Tourism funding increase positive for the region

Hamilton & Waikato Tourism is set to receive an injection of funding from its local government partners to further boost tourism in the region.

From July 2015 the local regional tourism organisation (RTO) which is tasked with marketing the Waikato tourism attractions to domestic and international visitors, will receive $1,215,000 annually from the seven councils (Hamilton City, Waikato, Waipa, Matamata Piako, Waitomo, Otorohanga and South Waikato Districts), an increase from $810,000.

Hamilton and Waikato Tourism CEO Kiri Goulter commends the decision and says all parties involved are pleased with the outcome. “The result is testament to the commitment of the city and region to tourism, which currently brings in $1b of visitor expenditure each year - the fifth highest in New Zealand.”

The RTO, which was created in July 2011, operates on a public/private partnership model with the industry contributing over $400,000, alongside the region’s councils each year, to marketing activities which benefit not only their businesses but the wider region.

As a key economic driver for the region, the Waikato tourism industry generates 6 million visitor nights each year and creates over 7,700 full-time jobs.

Although successful marketing campaigns to international and domestic markets over the last four years have positioned the region in a very positive light, Ms Goulter says there is plenty more to be achieved.

“The city and region has an exciting future ahead with iconic attractions such as Waitomo, Hobbiton Movie Set, Raglan and Hamilton Gardens as well as emerging new products and developments including Hamilton city’s river plan, high performance sport, cycleways and developing Hamilton as a business events hub”.

Receiving the increased funding will allow us to increase our domestic marketing and business events activities as well as broaden our scope into destination management, in turn creating great economic benefit for our communities,” she says.

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Contact: Kiri Goulter

Phone: 07 843 0056

Email: kiri@hamiltonwaiakato.com