Australia is one of the most visited countries in the world, with people from all corners of the globe flocking to Oz to see the Sydney Opera House, take a walk on Fraser Island or take a trek in the Tasmanian wilderness.
Despite Australia being one of the most desired holiday destinations on the planet, Sydney has reported a 2% drop in occupancy in 2014. Sydney is without doubt synonymous with the Australian landscape, with many people holidaymakers confusing it as the capital city, so it’s a little disconcerting that tourists might not be visiting the city as much as they used to.
So, why has there been a decline in tourism? And what can we do to prevent it from damaging Australia’s tourism industry?
A survey by HRS, a hotel solutions provider, discovered that Sydney is the most expensive city to stay in, as the average hotel room price costs £143. This news also comes after reports that Sydney’s prices dropped by 12% in comparison with the same period in 2013. Also, as it is reportedly 39% more expensive than Melbourne, it’s no surprise that more and more travellers are choosing to visit other cities over the popular destination.
The cost of living in Australia has soared over the past few years, with many people opting to travel to cheaper destinations, such as the United States or Europe, as they currency exchange rate is just too appealing for backpackers, and many are being put off by OZ’s high prices – and who can blame them?
Most countries across the world are only just recovering from the recession, with places such as the UK still struggling with the cost of living and turning to debt management companies, despite the fact their economy is now flourishing. Australia’s tourism industry is dependent on UK travellers, amongst others, backpacking in the city, but the figures speak for themselves. If people can’t afford to travel, they won’t, and Australia may soon start paying the price for international debt.
Business investment may also be hitting Sydney, as house prices both here and in Melbourne have significantly grown in recent years. Sydney’s housing pricesrose a whopping 14.8% in July this year, which is the fastest growth in any Australian state or territory capitals. The average house price in Sydney is now a heart-pumping $811,837.
Lang Walker, a billionaire and founder of one of Australia’s closely-held developers, recently stated: “Sydney is a little too hot at the moment. Melbourne has gone through a period of intense growth and that’s plateaued off”. As a result, he is now looking to alternatively increase business investments in Southern Malaysia, taking a significant amount of money out of Australia, and lucrative tourism opportunities from international professionals.