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The latest figures from Paymark show overseas visitors are using their credit cards to travel and enjoy Kiwi hospitality around the country, contributing to a modest increase across all card spending in September.
Foreign card spending during the month rose 29.4 per cent on last year, with an extra 254,000 transactions worth $32 million. This brought the total value of all foreign card transactions for September to $154 million.
The value of all transactions through Paymark’s network for the month grew 3.4 per cent (year-on-year), a rate lower than that experienced across the first eight months of the year.
Simon Tong, Paymark CEO, says that the figures show an injection of RWC-related spending contrasting with more moderate general growth rates but warns that other influences need to be factored into the total equation before judging the RWC impact.
“Our figures show what is being spent via electronic transactions around the country, but as we have heard from a number of our merchants, tourists are using cash for a lot of their purchases. Also pre-paid bookings and other agent bookings need to be considered as part of the total spending picture as well.
“From our perspective, since the Rugby World Cup began there has been a pattern showing pockets of spending as tourists travel the country eating, drinking and enjoying the Cup. This has been a huge bonus for some regions, particularly amongst hospitality merchants,” says Simon Tong.
Nelson, Waikato and Southland’s hospitality sectors all enjoyed large increases on the day of local games and the next day – up 45 per cent, 34 per cent and 26 per cent respectively from the same days last year. On other days in these regions, the hospitality spend has increased at 11 percent, 7 per cent and 14 percent respectively.
In other regions such as Otago and Auckland/Northland, the picture was similar but the game-time surge was relatively less obvious (15 per cent and 14 per cent), albeit the dollars involved in Auckland/Northland were greater ($9.5 million increase in hospitality spending on the days of an Auckland/Northland game and on the next day). Between games hospitality spending growth dropped back to 6 percent in both regions.
In other parts of the country, the overall change in spending both in the hospitality sector and across retail sectors in general is modest.
“At a national level, spending within other sectors did not change significantly: some spending increased, some decreased but there appeared little change elsewhere that could be related to the RWC. Overall the general situation remains tight,” concludes Simon Tong.
|Region||Last Year||Current Year||Volume Difference||Last Year||Current Year||Value Difference|
|(growth rate this time last year)||4.0%||3.6%|