Domestic air travellers reach record numbers
More people are flying domestically in Australia than ever before, with a record 55 million passengers carried on more than 600,000 flights in the year to June 2011.  Total domestic passenger numbers increased by three million, a rise of 5.8 per cent compared to the previous year, with the number of available seats up six per cent to over 70 million. Domestic passengers racked up a 63 billion kilometres of air travel – an increase of seven per cent. This was despite the impact of the Chilean volcanic ash cloud, which caused major disruptions to flights. Learn more.
Domestic tourism on the rebound
Domestic tourism in Australia has rebounded from the natural disasters in the early part of 2011, according to data released by Tourism Research Australia today.  The National Visitor Survey shows overnight trips for the June quarter 2011 rose by eight per cent while nights rose by five per cent and spending by 12 per cent. Read the full media release.

TWO sets of government figures today reveal the befuddling contradiction that is Australian domestic tourism. On the one hand, more people are flying in Australia than ever before, with a record 55m passengers carried on more than 600,000 flights in the year to June 2011.   Total domestic passenger numbers increased by 3m, up 5.8% over the previous year. But on the other hand the trips are shorter than ever before, thereby negating the impact of increased air travel.

The latest Tourism Research Australia statistics show in the year to June 2011 that the number of overnight trips taken by Australians was 68.9m, 4% higher than the previous 12 months. Yet despite this finding, supported by the aviation figures above, the  amount of time Australians spent away from home remained static at  260m nights. In other words, their trips were shorter. Spending also remained flat with an increase of 1% to $43bn despite encouraging signs in the last quarter. You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink.

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