NZ guest nights rise to a record for May as accommodation sector continues to thrive
By Tina Morrison
July 11 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand guest nights rose in May to a reach a record level for the month, driven by higher
local stays across the country and more international tourists in the South Island.
Total guest nights in May rose 1.6 percent to 2.54 million from May last year when they grew 7.3 percent, Statistics New
The country's accommodation sector is booming, helped by record levels of tourism and migration. The growth in total
guest nights in May was driven by more domestic guest nights spent in accommodation across New Zealand, and more
international guest nights in the South Island. Together these increases offset a fall in international guest nights in
the North Island.
“This month’s increase builds on the stronger guest night growth we saw last May,” Stats NZ accommodation statistics
manager Melissa McKenzie said. “May is typically one of the quieter months for accommodation providers, as we head into
cooler months,” McKenzie said. “This contrasts with the summer peak, when nearly twice as many guest nights are spent in
Guest nights in the South Island increased 4.1 percent to 971,000, while the North Island continued to record the
highest number of guest nights, edging up 0.2 percent to 1.57 million. Domestic guest stays increased 2.5 percent to
1.49 million while international guest nights lifted 0.4 percent to 1.05 million.
Hotels were the biggest beneficiary of the increase, with stays up 3.6 percent to 1.05 million, while motel stays lifted
1.3 percent to 801,000 and holiday park nights were up 1.7 percent to 361,000. Backpacker nights dropped for a fifth
straight month, down 3.7 percent to 333,000. The data doesn't include hosted and private accommodation.
The occupancy rate across accommodation types lifted to 37.5 percent in May from 37 percent a year earlier.