Study: New Zealand RVers are Big Spenders

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February 28, 2012 by   - () Leave a Comment

Map shows the plethora of camping options (indicated by red dots) on the North Island of New Zealand. National parks are shaded in green. Map courtesy of

New figures reveal that visitors overnighting at holiday parks and campgrounds in New Zealand contribute more to the nation's economy than many other types of travelers.

The average holiday park visitor spends a total of $3,693 on their New Zealand experience. This outlay puts them just behind the luxury travelers who prefer to stay at exclusive lodges ($3,836) and well ahead of hotel guests ($3,001), according to

And it is almost $1,300 or 52.6% ahead of the overall average total expenditure of visitors to New Zealand ($2,420).

Holiday Accommodation Parks Association of NZ (HAPNZ) Chief Executive Fergus Brown says the figures disprove the common perception that holiday parks attract low value visitors.

"In fact they have a very similar average total spend to guests staying in resorts and luxury lodges. Visitors staying in holiday parks stay in New Zealand longer and most importantly visit a wide range of locations throughout provincial New Zealand, often outside of the main tourism routes," Brown says.

"Our own research shows that our visitors spend money on an enormous range of goods and services, in addition to tourism activities and attractions. They shop locally, buying groceries, petrol and personal items, bringing extra income to local businesses."

Brown also notes that a large proportion (almost 70 percent) is spent after holiday park guests arrive in New Zealand, rather than being prepaid offshore.

To improve New Zealand's net economic growth, the government has said it wants the tourism industry to focus on attracting high quality visitors.

"These figures demonstrate that holiday park visitors, whether travelling by campervan or car, are among our greatest value market segments. It's crucial that we target them in our international marketing efforts. We will be working with Tourism New Zealand to ensure that this important sector isn't overlooked," Brown says.

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