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Sunday, May 11, 2014

NSW is Australia's Number One Destination

#imm #ate14

Following the success of international marketing campaigns, landmark airline partnerships and a robust major events calendar, Destination NSW Chief Executive Officer, Sandra Chipchase, today shared details of NSW's tourism and major events leadership.

“NSW is number one for visitors, visitor nights and visitor expenditure. Our huge array of festivals and events in regional NSW and Sydney, the infrastructure investments, and our fantastic new tourism products and experiences - and the way these are promoted both locally and overseas - are all driving strong results for our State,” Ms Chipchase said.

According to the latest International Visitor Survey (IVS) results for year end December 2013, NSW achieved its highest number of international visitors, nights and expenditure since 2005.

“From December 2012 to December 2013, NSW welcomed three million international visitors who stayed 72.8 million nights and spent $6.7 billion, giving our State the greatest share of international visitors to Australia,” Ms Chipchase said.

“In addition to our strong focus on increasing air services to Sydney from China, India, Singapore and Malaysia, our co-operative marketing campaigns, publicity activities and securing the right mix of major events, has resulted in a huge increase in interest and visitation to the State. These results prove Sydney continues to lead Melbourne and Brisbane in visitor numbers, nights and expenditure.”

Destination NSW has also, in partnership with Sydney Airport, secured a new Qantas A380 service between Sydney and Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW), Texas for six non-stop services between DFW and Sydney per week.

Growth markets supported by new air services, partnerships and campaigns

According to the December 2013 IVS results, NSW saw growth in visitor numbers from priority markets, including India, which grew 22.8 per cent, Hong Kong grew 13.4 per cent, China grew 12.4 per cent, and the United Kingdom grew 8.4 per cent. NSW maintains its position as the China market's top destination of choice in Australia.

To support increased air services and partnerships with airlines including Qantas, China Southern and China Eastern Airlines, Scoot and AirAsiaX, Destination NSW has developed highly targeted international marketing campaigns.

“We developed the first international campaign targeting the Visiting Friends and Relatives market in India, a campaign entitled Jhappi Time, which translates to 'Hug Time' in Hindi,” Ms Chipchase said.

“Australian-Indian Bollywood director Anupam Sharma, filmed the campaign which portrays Sikh and Hindu families reuniting with loved ones studying and working in Sydney.

“The integrated campaign supports industry partners and travel wholesalers to promote 'Jhappi Time' travel packages and airfare offers to Indian travel agents and visitors.

Australia's Event Capital

The Sydney and NSW Events Calendar continues to drive visitation and receive acclaim, with NSW named Australia's Best Event State at the annual Australian Event Awards.

“NSW is Australia's home of major events and we're proud that in addition to being named as the Best Event State, Vivid Sydney, which is owned and managed by Destination NSW, was named the Australian Event of the Year.

"Last year's festival attendance was unprecedented with over 800,000 attendees, and it is testament to the popularity of Vivid Sydney and the significant marketing, promotion and travel packaging activity delivered by Destination NSW for this 'only in Sydney' winter event,” said Ms Chipchase.

NSW's major events strategy has already seen many highlights for 2014. Sydney hosted the Major League Baseball Opening Series between the L.A. Dodgers and the Arizona Diamondbacks which saw more than 107,000 people attend over four days. More than 29,000 of whom travelled from interstate or overseas.

“Securing first-run musicals is also a key component of our major events strategy and reinforces Sydney's position as Australia's live performance capital. In 2014, we have seen the world premiere of Strictly Ballroom The Musical and we also announced the Australian premiere of Matilda the Musical for 2015,” Ms Chipchase added.

Infrastructure investment

A number of significant infrastructure developments are underway in Sydney which will benefit tourism and major events greatly.

Royal Randwick Racecourse has been transformed with the $170 million development of a new six-level grandstand and impressive racing facilities which are already attracting international attention. Royal Randwick recently hosted 'The Championships', a new thoroughbred event that is one of the world's richest racing carnivals, attracting horses, trainers and racegoers from around the globe.

In the Sydney CBD, Barangaroo is a major new development located on a 22-ectare site on the western harbour foreshore. It is destined to become the city's financial and business hub, reborn as a thriving public, residential and commercial precinct, complete with a waterfront promenade, running the length of the site.

Incorporating a major new Headland Park, Barangaroo is one of the world's most ambitious and significant waterfront redevelopments. Over time, 23,000 people will live and work at Barangaroo, while 33,000 people are expected to visit Barangaroo each day by 2020.

“Business events remain an important market for the State, with about a third of all business travellers to Australia visiting NSW, according to Tourism Research Australia (TRA).

“As development begins on the new International Convention Centre Sydney, Destination NSW continues to work closely with Business Events Sydney to deliver conferences and exhibitions for the interim Sydney Exhibition Centre @ Glebe Island and to secure lucrative, international incentive travel programs.

“A highlight of this partnership is securing the rights to host the Pro-Health China Annual Conference in September 2014, the first time the Pro-Health Annual Conference will be held outside of Asia. Around 4,500 delegates are expected to attend the conference which is estimated to inject $22.5 million into the NSW economy.

“We are delighted to see the strong performances being achieved by Sydney and the State and Destination NSW is committed to ensuring NSW remains Australia's destination of choice,” Ms Chipchase said.

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