10 May 2013

Longer summer, early Easter boosts visitor stays

2:11 pm on 10 May 2013

The number of visitors staying in New Zealand hotels, motels and backpackers surged in March, due to a lingering summer and early Easter holidays.

Official figures show that nights spent in short-term commercial accommodation rose a seasonally-adjusted 6.7% in March - the largest monthly increase since July 2009 and follows a rise of 2.4% in February.

The number of domestic travellers rose 8.7%, while international visitors rose 3.2%.

Statistics New Zealand manager Blair Cardno said great weather, an early Easter and an increase in tourists all contributed to the high number of guest nights.

All types of accommodation had an increase in patronage, particularly holiday parks.

Statistics show the national trend indicates that guest nights have been rising since May 2012.