What does the Australian dollar have to do with tourism rates?

The Asian visitor market is boosting Australian tourism.

The Asian visitor market is boosting Australian tourism.

Recent reports on Australia's tourism industry all suggest the same thing – the market is not expected to die down any time soon. This is very favourable news for anyone considering undergoing tourism training in the next few years.

IBISWorld puts the nation's total tourism market at a value of $117.2 billion in 2014-15, thanks largely to international travellers heading downunder to take advantage of the weakening dollar. What's more, growth is expected to continue over the following five years to reach total revenue of almost $129 billion in 2019-20.

So what does the Australian dollar have to do with luring holidaymakers to our shores? The impact on exchange rates varies across demographics, according to Tourism Australia, with international holiday travellers more influenced by the strength of the dollar compared to locals visiting friends and families and business travellers.

Those holidaymakers aged 50 and older are most responsive to changes in the dollar value, says Tourism Australia, while exchange rates affect youths considering travelling to Australia the least. Interestingly, travellers' country of origin also has a bearing on whether or not they will visit Australia with a strong or weak dollar. Travellers from Singapore, Hong Kong and Korea are particularly responsive to exchange rate movements, says Tourism Australia.

IBISWorld has also commented on this trend, saying the majority of visitor growth expected this financial year will come from our neighbours including China, Singapore, India and Malaysia.

"With non-traditional tourism markets now driving growth across the sector, savvy businesses are expanding their services in a bid to attract the growing number of Asian tourists seeking luxury experiences during their stay," IBISWorld industry analyst Ryan Lin says.

The increasing number of inbound visitors from Asia is encouraging tourism operators to adapt services to suit the requirements of new visitor groups. China looks set to continue to make their mark on Australian tourism, becoming the second-largest source of visitors to Australian in 2013, according to IBISWorld.

The falling Australia dollar has been attracting inbounds tourism since mid-2013, IBISWorld reports. It's not just holidays that people are travelling for, either. Business, education, employment and visiting friends and family are all popular reasons for visiting Australia, with, the Great Barrier Reef, Uluru and the Kimberley all being promoted as ideal holiday destinations for global travellers.