17 October 2008
NZ tops UK tourism charts again
New Zealand has won itself yet another tourism award as voted by British travellers, and the Government has publicly congratulated national tourism operators for providing a world-class tourism destination for international visitors.
The Guardian, the Observer and guardian.co.uk asked their readers of their favourite long-haul destination in the recent annual Reader's Travel Awards, and for the second time New Zealand reigned supreme as their number one destination.
Tourism Minister Damien O'Connor congratulated the New Zealand tourism industry for its continued application to creating a world-renowned tourism destination, and that it was on track to meeting the goals set out in the New Zealand Tourism Strategy 2015.
"Of note is that this win comes in the face of flattening visitor numbers from the UK, New Zealand's second-largest tourist market. There were just under 290,000 visitors from the UK in the year to August 2008, down 4 per cent on the previous year," Mr O'Connor said.
Tourism New Zealand recently released a tourism campaign in the UK aimed at drawing more people to New Zealand over its summer months. The $7.3 million campaign is the first of its kind for Tourism New Zealand, as it uses the real experiences of travellers in the country as testimonies to create a sense of immediacy for viewers.
This year, New Zealand won several other awards, including the top country for tourism in the Conde Nast Traveller Readers' Awards 2008 (UK) and ‘Country of the Year 2008’ by Australian travel show Getaway, while Tourism New Zealand won a Gold Award in the Designers Institute of New Zealand's Best Design Awards for its inflatable rugby ball venue. Famed travel guide the Lonely Planet also named New Zealand in the top choice in Lonely Planet’s 2009 ‘best of’ travel guide.
Many international visitors to New Zealand do not have to apply for a tourist visa to holiday in the country. Australian citizens have visa-free entry to New Zealand, while British citizens can holiday in the country for up to 6 months on a Visitor’s Permit. Nationals from countries part of the visa waiver agreement with New Zealand can visit the country for no more than three months without needing to apply for a New Zealand tourist visa.
The New Zealand Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their New Zealand visa application.
Article by Jessica Bird, New Zealand Visa Bureau.