In 2015–16, domestic day trips increased 10.6% to 187.1 million trips, driving a subsequent increase in day trip expenditure, up 7.1% to $19.6 billion.
Why were they travelling?
Holiday trips (up 16.4%) drove the increase in domestic day trips, with the share of holiday trips increasing from 46% to 48% (or 90.1 million trips), and accounting for 55% of spend ($10.9 billion).
Growth in day trip travel included:
- Business – trips up 11.0% to 19.3 million trips, spend up 8.2% to $1.9 billion
- Visiting Friends and Relatives – trips up 4.2% to 52.6 million trips, spend up 3.6% to $3.8 billion
Where did they go?
New South Wales continued as a popular destination for domestic day travellers, accounting for 31% of both trips and spend. The strongest growth in domestic day trips occurred in the Australian Capital Territory, South Australia and Queensland.
Day trips by state
- NEW SOUTH WALES
- SOUTH AUSTRALIA
- WESTERN AUSTRALIA
- NORTHERN TERRITORY
- AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
- NSW 57.5 million
- VIC 47.2 million
- QLD 40.5 million
- SA 13.2 million
- WA 19.4 million
- TAS 5.6 million
- NT 1.6 million
- ACT 2.1 million
- NSW $6 billion
- VIC $4.5 billion
- QLD $4.5 billion
- SA $1.3 billion
- WA $2 billion
- TAS $581 million
- NT $170 million
- ACT $365 million
Day trips continued to be predominantly intrastate, accounting for 95% of all day trips and 91% of spend. The one exception, understandably, was the Australian Capital Territory, where intrastate travel accounted for just 13% of trips and 15% of spend. The physical size of the Australian Capital Territory region means that day trips are most likely to be outside of the region. On the opposite end of the scale, Western Australia is so vast with its main population centres isolated from the rest of Australia, that day trips for Western Australia residents were almost entirely intrastate.
What were their travel preferences?
The primary mode of transport remained self-drive vehicles, accounting for 172.9 million trips (92% of all day trips), with air travel accounting for 2.0 million trips.
Day trip travellers most commonly engaged in social events such as:
- Eating out/dining at a restaurant – 86.9 million trips
- Visiting friends and relatives – 62.8 million
- Going shopping for pleasure – 33.8 million.
Outdoor and nature activities such as going to the beach and visiting national parks were also common activities, accounting for 22.5 million and 10.6 million trips, respectively. Additionally, 6.3 million trips resulted from people attending a festival, fair or cultural event.
The largest spend items for day trip travellers were food and drink ($6.7 billion), transportation ($5.1 billion) and shopping ($4.9 billion).
What tourism activity is forecast for domestic day trips?
FIVE YEARS TO 2020-21
The latest tourism forecasts indicate that domestic day trips are expected to increase 3.7% per annum to 224 million by 2020–21, with spend expected to increase 6.2% per annum to $26.4 billion, an increase of $6.8 billion.