Tourism New Zealand is encouraging agents to highlight travel in the shoulder seasons - from March to May and from late September to November - to clients, with a number of advantages in doing so.

The tourist office's regional manager, UK & Europe, Danielle Genty-Nott, said: "There are many advantages in travelling to New Zealand at these times including the fact that it is less crowded and many hotels offer a number of deals and promotions, making it better value for money not to mention that it is a beautiful time of the year to visit."

In terms of emerging trends, Genty-Nott says that they like to think they are driving the trends rather than the other way round by highlighting the destination's numerous advantages including the plethora of outdoor activities available including walking and cycling trails as well as the destination's gastronomy and cultural offerings.

Overall, the destination reports an increase in UK visitors in the last few years and says that this continues to steadily increase, along with the average length of stay (between 28 and 32 days) and the average spend (currently NZ$6,000) per person.

Genty-Nott said: "One trend that is interesting to see is that repeat visitors continue to increase, with first-time visitors coming here as young backpackers and then returning when they are in their mid-40s with their families. We are still focusing on the youth market as this is where demand is the strongest, but we are also appealing to those aged 55-plus - the 'active boomers' as we refer to them as we see a significant pick-up in the coach and cruise industry demand from this market. As well as these two markets, agents should also think about selling to their discerning clients as we have a number of luxury property openings that will whet their appetite.

Meanwhile, the destination is looking forward to a calendar of events in the coming years, with two major events scheduled for 2017: World Masters Games being held in Auckland in April 2017 and the British & Irish Lions Tour, which heads to New Zealand for the first time in 12 years in June 2017.


For further information visit stand AS355 and www.traveltrade.newzealand.com

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