For the July – September period total Queenstown guest nights were up 5.8 percent to 810,615 - up from a total of 766,481 in 2013.
The winter results show a small decline in guest numbers, a decrease of -1.4 percent over the same period in 2013, however the average length of stay rose from 3.08 nights in 2013 to 3.30 nights, meaning visitors were spending longer in the resort.
International visitors made up 65 percent of Queenstown’s winter visitors, with international guest nights for the quarter totalling 530,002 and domestic nights were 280,613. International guest nights were up 6.1 percent over the same three month period in 2013 and domestic guest nights up 5.1 percent.
Destination Queenstown CEO Graham Budd said the growth in guest nights for the winter season was pleasing, particularly following a slightly slower start to the ski season due to snow conditions.
“We have enjoyed strong rates of growth in winter over the last couple of years and our promotion of winter and ski messaging, particularly in the Australian market, continues to pay off. The overall guest night increase is due to average stay nights increasing, so people staying longer, which is a trend we’d like to see continue.
“July is traditionally our peak winter month so we expect a strong performance then, but it’s great to see the effect of increased scheduled flights and flight capacity, enhancements at the ski areas and New Zealand and Australian school holidays all combine to deliver a great winter season overall.
“This is the third year we’ve seen incremental guest night growth for our core ski season so we’re pleased with the results,” said Mr Budd.
For the individual month of September 2014, guest nights rose 8.3 percent to 210,427 and the average length of stay rose from 2.82 nights to 3.08 nights. Year-end September 2014 also showed strong growth with guest nights up 8.5 percent to 2,952,161. International guest nights rose 8.7 percent to 1,930,558 and domestic guest nights rose 8.2 percent to 1,021,603.
The September 2014 Commercial Accommodation Monitor report for Queenstown is available on the Destination Queenstown website.