Yesterday Tourism New Zealand presented the findings from a domestic sentiment study that tells us Kiwis' views on holidaying at home. The research was undertaken with New Zealanders aged between 18-75 years across the following segments: single-income with no children, double-income with no children, families with young children, empty nesters and new migrants (those who moved to New Zealand within past five years).
According to Statistics New Zealand, in 2019, New Zealanders spent $NZ 17.9 billion for domestic travel and only $NZ 9.3 billion for outbound travel. Analysts believe that it proves a high potential of the domestic market. The sentiment study conducted in June this year shows that New Zealanders recognise their country to be an exciting and fun holiday destination with 60% identifying New Zealand as having experiences that cannot be found elsewhere.
Despite the COVID-19 effects, the study shows that 64% of respondents intend to holiday within New Zealand in the next 12 months. Wherein 43% of respondents are going to spend more than they typically would on a domestic holiday. However, it mostly concerns accommodation, eating out and transport. When holidaying domestically, many New Zealanders choose not to spend as much on activities as they do overseas, because there are lots of free activities and also a perceived sense of over-familiarity or apathy towards paid domestic activities.
47% of respondents intend to take frequent domestic holidays rather than longer holidays. Weekend getaways and short trips up to 5 days will be in a high demand within the next 12 months. However, there is an appetite for longer trips, that can be unlocked with certain audience segments. 90% of respondents answered that they need to travel outside their region to feel like a holiday.
Key insights of the domestic sentiment study:
There is a strong demand for a domestic holiday, driven by both desire to support the economy and to see more of New Zealand - the economic impacts of COVID-19 might dampen the appetite for domestic travel for some.
For most New Zealanders, the feeling of being on holiday is not defined by boarding a plane to go overseas - it is more so about heading somewhere to relax and escape the daily routine.
There is a recognition amongst New Zealanders of the immediate, unique opportunity to experience a quieter New Zealand in the absence of international visitors - particularly known destinations hot-spots.
New Zealanders are keen to discover new places in the country where they can relax, sample tasty food, and see iconic landmarks.
Perceptions that domestic holidays are too expensive and lack value for money limit the desire for domestic travel: deals could stimulate demand short-term, but long-term a more sustainable solution is needed.
Weekend and short trips are more likely holidays New Zealanders will take, and to a great extent desire to take longer holidays is down to having enough annual leave.
The full presentation of the study's findings is in the video: