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Travel to and from Australia – by the numbers

5 August 20160 comments

New Zealand, Indonesia – including Bali – and the US were the top three most popular travel destinations for people leaving Australia in 2015-16, according to new figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

ABS Migration Analysis and Reporting Team manager Libby O’Toole said the same three countries were among the most popular travel destinations for Australians 10 years ago, along with the United Kingdom.

“Australians made 1.3 million short-term trips across the Tasman to New Zealand last financial year, 452,300 more trips than we made 10 years ago,” Ms O’Toole said.

Travel distinations2She said 1.2 million Australians visited Indonesia, 1.03 million visited the US (more than double the figure 10 years ago), 606,500 visited Britain and 547,900 visited Thailand.

“Short-term resident departures to Indonesia have increased more than five times over the last 10 years. At 1.2 million trips, this was the second most frequently visited country,” Ms O’Toole said.

In 2015-16, holidays made up 59 per cent of all journeys and the average amount of time people spent outside Australia was 23 days.

“Most international visitors come from New Zealand, with 1.3 million Kiwis taking short-term trips last financial year, over 246,400 more than 10 years ago,” said Ms O’Toole.

“Visitors from China followed as the second most popular source of travellers to Australia, with 1.2 million visitors. This was almost four times the number that came to Australia in 2005-06.”

Also visiting Australia in large numbers were Britons (699,000), Americans (657,000), Singaporeans (428,000), Japanese (381,000), Malaysians (356,800) and South Koreans (257,000).

Melbourne Lord Mayor Robert said a lot of the Chinese visiting Melbourne were relatives of students on study visas.

“Over the course of their study here, family visit on average three times and they stay 14 days,” Cr Doyle said.

“That’s an important part of the tourism economy, and that’s going to continue to grow because we see ourselves as an education destination.”

Laurie Nowell
AMES Australia Senior Journalist