Domestic tourism August 2022
Tourism Research Australia’s (TRA’s) monthly snapshots estimate tourism activity in the related month. TRA also produces quarterly and annual summaries.
This report compares the month of August 2022 with the pre-pandemic month of August 2019.
Up 30% on August 2019
Down 1% on August 2019
Nights spent on trip
Up 2% on August 2019
August 2022 showed improved domestic travel after a COVID-impacted 2020 and 2021. Overnight spend (up 30%) and nights away (up 2%) were up on pre-pandemic levels. However, overnight trips remained slightly down by 1%.
The increase in spend when compared to August 2019 saw:
- increased average spend per trip (up 31%)
- increased travel for holiday purposes (trips up 16%)
- increased spending across all major expenditure items. The largest increases were on:
- accommodation (up 51%)
- food and drink (up 33%)
- petrol (up 37%).
Breakdown of results
In August 2022:
- there were 8.5 million overnight trips. This was down 1% compared to August 2019
- visitors spent 31 million nights away. This was up 2% compared to August 2019
- spend was up 30% ($1.9 billion) to $8.1 billion compared to August 2019
- there were strong spend results in all state and territories. The highest increases were in Queensland (up 64% or $967 million, compared to August 2019)
- visitor numbers have almost returned to pre-pandemic levels. They were down only 1% compared to August 2019. Travelers were spending more money on average and taking longer trips. The average spend per trip was up $226 (31%) to $959 compared to August 2019.
COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions have impacted September and October 2021. Early data shows domestic overnight trip rates were significantly up. This was for September and the first 3 weeks of October 2022. However, trip rates were slightly down on pre-pandemic levels.
The October 2022 trip rate shows 34.3% of NVS respondents interviewed in weeks 1-3, took one or more overnight trips. This was for the preceding 28 days (the reference period). The return date was in September for some of these trips.
The trip estimate of 8.5 million for August refers to overnight trips returned from in that month.
Purpose of travel
August 2022 saw strong expenditure results for holiday and visiting friends and relatives. Business expenditure was slightly down on pre-pandemic levels. The number of overnight trips for holiday purposes was up. However, visiting friends and relatives and business trip numbers were down.
In August 2022, Australians:
- spent $4.7 billion while traveling for holiday purposes and took 3.4 million trips. Spend was up 65% compared to August 2019.
- spent $1.2 billion while travelling to visit friends and relatives took 2.6 million trips. Spend was up 15% compared to August 2019.
- spent $2.0 billion while travelling for business purposes and took 2.0 million trips. Spend was down 8% when compared to August 2019.
Business expenditure continues to recover. This was down 8% on pre-COVID August 2019. The number of business trips was also down 18% compared to August 2019.
Business travel is of particular importance to the visitor economies of Australia’s capital cities. It enables value-added events such as conferences, seminars and trade fairs.
Interstate and intrastate visitors and spend
August 2022 saw strong results for interstate travel continue. Overnight spend was up on pre-pandemic levels. However, overnight trips and nights away were down slightly.
In August 2022, Australians:
- took 2.8 million interstate overnight trips. This was down 3% or 101,000 on the 2.9 million trips recorded in August 2019
- spent $4.8 billion. This was up 25% or $949 million on August 2019.
The strongest growth in interstate spend compared to 2019 was in:
- Queensland – up $453 million or 51%
- South Australia – up $127 million or 83%.
Intrastate trips performed well when compared to August 2019. In August 2022, Australians:
- took 5.7 million intrastate overnight trips. This was on par with the number of trips in August 2019
- spent $3.4 billion on intrastate overnight trips, up 37% or $910 million on August 2019.
Domestic day trips
Australians took 15.9 million day trips and spent $2.4 billion in August 2022.
Compared to a pre-COVID August 2019 this was a:
- 25% decrease in day trips
- 5% decrease in spend.
National Visitor Survey results monthly data tables