Brisbane achieves record international tourism numbers


Brisbane’s tourism industry continues to gallop ahead with international visitor expenditure topping more than $2 billion and an additional 50,000 international visitors in the year to December 2016.

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said Tourism Australia’s latest International Visitor Survey showed Brisbane had attracted an all-time high of 1.194 million international visitors.

“These record tourism numbers are due to Brisbane’s ever-growing international profile, combined with a world-class major events calendar and an increase in quality hotel supply,” Cr Quirk said. 

“Overall Brisbane has seen a 25 per cent increase in international tourists visiting since 2012.

“The G20 World Leaders Summit gave Brisbane the chance to shine on the world stage and since then our international reputation has gone from strength to strength with key tourism markets showing strong gains.

“In early 2014, we were forgoing 121,000 visitors each year due to a lack of hotel supply - now Brisbane has thousands of new hotel rooms to meet the increased demand from major events and conferences.

“Since I announced an incentive to attract new hotels to Brisbane, hotel supply has grown by 4200 rooms, with 17 new hotels and a further 10 under construction.

“These new hotels alone are contributing an additional 2000 jobs to the city and allowing us to attract major world-class events, which previously our hotel supply did not allow.”

The latest tourism results showed strong gains, with Chinese visitors up 18.6 per cent, US visitors climbing 16.5 per cent, Japan rising 14.2 per cent, Korea up 34 per cent and Canada up 16.8 per cent.

Tourism Summit discusses future of industry

Tourism Summit Brisbane

With the city’s ongoing focus on attracting greater numbers of international travellers, around 150 tourism industry stakeholders came together at Brisbane’s innovation hub The Capital on 24 March for the Lord Mayor’s Tourism Summit. 

Cr Quirk and Tourism Australia Managing Director John O’Sullivan presented keynote addresses while the council’s Finance and Economic Development Chair, Krista Adams, joined a panel of tourism operators to discuss the future of the industry up to 2022. 

Attendees later broke into groups to identify gaps in need of filling to ensure the future success of Brisbane’s tourism, major events and conference sectors by 2022 and beyond. 

International Visitor Survey year-ended Dec. 2016 key results for Brisbane:

  • Brisbane Total Visitors – 1,194,000 - Record
  • Brisbane Overnight Visitor Expenditure – over $2 billion – Record
  • China – 220,000 up 18.6%
  • US – 94,000 up 16.5%
  • Japan – 38,000 up 14.2%
  • Canada – 29,000 up 16.8%