7 Jun 2012

Tourism sector sceptical over positive figures

6:10 am on 7 June 2012

Tourism organisation are at odds over Government figures saying domestic tourism spending is at its highest in eight years.

A survey of 15,000 New Zealanders by the Ministry of Economic Development found spending jumped 11% to $9.95 billion for the year ending in March.

However, regional tourism organisations says the Government figures do not match up with reality.

AA Tourism chief executive Pete Blackwell, agrees, saying the past 12 months have been incredibly difficult for operators.

He says the Canterbury earthquakes have stopped a lot of activity through the gateway of Christchurch.

But the Tourism Industry Association says the earthquakes have actually caused domestic travel to increase.