Canterbury is the country’s most optimistic region, annual results from the Holiday Parks Association of New Zealand (HAPNZ) Business Confidence Monitor show.
The monitor reveals that Canterbury holiday parks were the most confident overall during 2013, supporting Commercial Accommodation Monitor (CAM) data that shows occupancy was up 3% and average length of stay up 6% on 2012 for Canterbury holiday parks.
The monitor, designed and run by Angus & Associates, has evaluated the confidence of Holiday Park members since 2012 – asking participants to indicate their confidence levels right now and looking ahead to the next 12 months.
“The Holiday Parks Business Confidence Monitor provides a consistent measure of the degree of optimism within the sector. It’s interesting to see Canterbury leading the way in confidence and it would be great to compare this to other parts of the tourism industry,” Angus & Associates’ Marketing and Brand Specialist, Nick Thompson, says.
Jackie Anderson of Christchurch TOP 10 Holiday Park commented: “Christchurch is to a degree emerging from the ‘earthquake bubble’ which we have experienced for more than three years. International guests are returning to the city although not yet back to pre-earthquake numbers. Another important component has been sports teams, events and school trips returning to Christchurch. Our traditional guests have returned and our traditional international markets are returning. We welcome their return and look forward to a business as usual 2014.”
Steve Fraser of North South Holiday Park commented “demand for all types of accommodation continues to be strong and at times we have been limited by capacity. The summer period has definitely been our busiest on record and forward bookings are up on last year.”
Fergus Brown, Chief Executive of HAPNZ, says: “we have found that the Business Confidence Monitor has provided us with very useful information over the year. It clearly indicates what our sector expects from the months ahead.”
Martin Snedden, Chief Executive of the Tourism Industry Association New Zealand (TIA), says: “TIA congratulates HAPNZ for carrying out this research which is strongly aligned with the outcomes of the Tourism 2025 growth framework – creating and using good insight to support better business decision-making. The Holiday Parks Business Confidence Monitor reflects what we are hearing from many TIA members who have seen an upturn in business through 2013. There are definite indications that tourism is rebounding in terms of both numbers and spend, and we look forward to this continuing.”
Business Confidence Monitor results also show a seasonal influence on Holiday Park confidence with optimism highest around the summer months. Larger parks with five or more employees are also more confident overall. On average for 2013, all regions except the Upper South Island reported greater increases than decreases in demand when comparing the current month to the same month last year, again reflected in the CAM results that show guest nights for 2013 were up on the previous year by 0.7% across the country.
The two most influential factors driving increased demand were the appeal of a holiday park’s region and the appeal of holiday parks in general. The most influential factors driving decreases in demand (when apparent) varied from global economic conditions and the international visitor market at the beginning of 2013 to weather conditions and the domestic visitor market as the year progressed.