There has been a 5.3 per cent drop in the numbers of Indian visitors to New Zealand in 2019, according to the latest release from the Stats NZ. 

In the year ending October 2019, a total of 65, 162 visitors from India visited New Zealand. In contrast, 3622 more people had travelled to New Zealand in 2018. 

This was very much in the general trend of a gradual drop in the number of visitors from Asia visiting New Zealand as the growth in annual visitor arrivals also dropped to its lowest level in seven years.

China continued to be the number one Asian source country sending temporary visitors to New Zealand. However, in 2019, China also witnessed a 9.3 per cent drop in the number of visitors choosing to travel to New Zealand. 

Only Australia (up 52,800) and the US (up 22,800) were the major source countries that had defied the general trend and send additional visitors. 

However, importantly, NZ Stats said that part of the observed drop in visitor arrivals from Asia, including China, is due to an increase in the number of visitors whose country of residence was not stated.

A whopping 94, 717 visitors refused to state their arrival source country in 2019 – a 327.4 per cent increase from 22,160 people in 2018 who refused to state their port of origin. 

Numbers drop for the first time after five years of continuous increase 

The drop in the numbers of Indian visitors in 2019 is the first instance after continuously increasing for the last five consecutive years. 

In 2015, 44,112 visitors from India travelled to NZ, registering a maximum increase in 2018, and reaching to a high of 68, 784 – an increase of 10,080 visitors from 2017. 

“Holiday” is the biggest purpose for a short-term visit to NZ

“Holidays,” followed by “visiting friends and relatives,” were the two most common purposes for Indian travellers visiting New Zealand, which was following the general trend of global visitors travelling to New Zealand. 

However, the number of Indian travellers visiting for both these purposes witnessed a drop. 

In contrast, there was a 37 per cent increase in the number of Indian visitors travelling for the purpose of “business” in New Zealand in 2019. 

This was again, as per the overall trend of global tourists visiting New Zealand for the purpose of “business” (up by 10.2 per cent). 

Among the list of the source countries sending holiday-makers to New Zealand, India was at the thirteenth position. 

However, in the list of source countries from where people stated “meeting friends & relatives” as their main purpose of visiting NZ, India was at fifth position.