Tourism contributes nearly $3 billion
                      to Auckland annually

                  TOURISM AUCKLAND
                                  - Very impressive

     The largest Regional Tourism Organisation (RTO) in New Zealand, Tourism
     Auckland, operates as a business unit. Its Visitor Information Centre
     operations (I-Sites) are self-funding and Councils only provide funding for
     destination marketing to augment funds raised by the Regional Tourism
     Organisation through cooperative marketing with the private sector. This
     paper provides an insight into the innovative operations of this very
     successful RTO.

     Details are also included of the recent extensive Auckland campaign in
     Australia as part of the Tourism New Zealand “What’s On” campaign.

                          With the compliments Norm White, Director
                                  Advance Tourism
                                      Mt Waverley Victoria
                             Ph (03) 9888 15732 Mob 0409 198 531

                                             4 May 2007

         Please feel free to make this paper available in full or in part to others who may be
            interested in a more successful tourism industry. If published, please provide
                               acknowledgment to Advance Tourism.
                                    Tourism Auckland – Very impressive

                                   TOURISM AUCKLAND
                 Tourism contributes nearly $3 billion to Auckland annually
Auckland is recognised by visitors to NZ as being New Zealand’s largest city but may not be aware that it
covers a far wider geographical area. As one means of lifting the profile of the wider area, Tourism
Auckland has produced an excellent 96 page A5 booklet, “The Auckland Guide”. This not only includes
destination information for localities in the region but it also includes 5 touring routes out from the city to
various parts of the Greater Auckland area including the City of Auckland, Manukau City to the south, and
North Shore City to the north. The total population of the region being 1.4 million (one third of the country’s
entire population).

The theme used to promote the wider area is carried through to the Tourism Auckland website, a splendid website, well worth a look. This is just the tip of the iceberg for Tourism
Auckland’s widespread operations.
Corporate Profile
Tourism Auckland has a Corporate Profile, a superb 4 page production with flap. The Corporate Profile
has been copied onto pages 2-3 of this report. It provides a great insight into the RTO’s operations.

The Vision Statement and the Statement of Intent for the RTO are set out in the Corporate Profile below.
Commercial operations
On page 4 of this paper are details of Tourism Auckland’s commercial operations. Tourism Auckland
operates as a business unit. It’s I-Site (Visitor Information Centre) operations are self-funding and
Councils provide funding for destination marketing to augment funds raised by the RTO through
cooperative marketing with the private sector.

Tourism Auckland’s marketing initiatives include
• I-Site Hot Deals
• International student programs

Further details are shown in the Commercial Operations section

Tourism Auckland Vision
            “Tourism Auckland will lead the development, positioning, and promotion of the
            Auckland region as a sustainable, distinctive, compelling and global quality
            destination in order to exceed the expectations of our key markets.”

Tourism Auckland statement of intent
            Tourism Auckland will seek to improve the region’s competitiveness as a visitor
            destination and maximize the long term economic, social, cultural, and
            environmental benefits of the visitor industry to the Auckland region by:
             •   Growing the value and influence of Tourism Auckland as a key sector catalyst
             •   Understanding the needs and expectations of our customers, and measuring
                 how well the destination delivers against those expectations
             •   Promoting the region as a sustainable, distinctive, compelling and high quality
                 global visitor destination
             •   Facilitating and catalysing the development of new tourism product that is
                 consistent with the ‘Story of Auckland’
             •   Promoting a sector wide              focus    on    economic,     social,    cultural,   and
                 environmental responsibility
             •   Challenging the tourism sector to realise profitability goals
             •   Benchmarking the quality of product and service delivery against global best

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                                  Tourism Auckland – Very impressive

                     Tourism Auckland Corporate profile
The Tourism Auckland Corporate Profile is an impressive document containing the following information.

What does tourism mean for Auckland?
            • Tourism was worth $2.55 billion to the regional economy in 2004
            • Tourism sustained 50,190 full-time equivalent jobs (10 per cent of total
              employment in Auckland)
            • Nearly one third of all international visitor nights in New Zealand in the year to
              March 2005 were spent in the Auckland region (32.8 per cent)
            • The average international visitor stay in Auckland is 7.8 nights – the longest
              stay of any region in the country.
Forecasts for growth
            The Tourism Research Council of New Zealand ( predicts that
            tourism in Auckland will grow faster than many other regions in the next five

            It estimates that:
            • International visitor nights spent in Auckland will grow by 34.6 per cent
              between 2004 and 2011
            • Domestic visitor nights spent in Auckland will grow by 7.3 per cent between
              2004 and 2011
            • Visitor spending in Auckland will increase by 46.9 per cent between 2004 and
              2011, the biggest growth in New Zealand

            In 2001, Competitive Auckland, a non-profit group of business leaders,
            commissioned research that estimated tourism would provide 44 per cent of the
            total economic growth in the Auckland region between 2001 and 2010.
What is Tourism Auckland?
            Tourism Auckland, as the region’s mandated destination marketer, promotes
            Auckland as a visitor destination. It is a charitable trust and is the largest of 29
            Regional Tourism Organisations in New Zealand. Tourism Auckland represents
            Auckland’s interests on key national and local tourism forums.

How is it funded?
            Tourism Auckland’s annual budget is currently about $2.01 million. It receives
            most of its funding from Auckland City (75 per cent), and Manukau City is
            another major contributor (15 per cent). North Shore City also supports Tourism

            Tourism Auckland also works in partnership with tourism operators in the
            Auckland region, which contribute a further $2 million of cash and “in-kind” per
            annum to marketing initiatives on a project-by-project basis.

            Tourism Auckland’s seven visitor information centres earn commissions on
            reservations made on behalf of visitors and turn over more than $10 million
            annually on a break-even basis.

Advance Tourism                                    2
                             Tourism Auckland – Very impressive

How does Tourism Auckland market the region?
         Tourism Auckland’s primary focus is domestic and international marketing. It
         continually works with industry partners to increase visitor numbers, encourage
         them to stay longer and do more. Tourism Auckland’s marketing activities include
         a comprehensive visiting media programme to increase positive media coverage
         of the region. Tourism Auckland advertises to Auckland residents and the rest of
         New Zealand, encouraging visitors and use of the region’s tourism assets.
         Overseas, Tourism Auckland works to educate travel agents and tour wholesalers
         on the benefits of visiting Auckland. This activity focuses on New Zealand’s major
         markets of Australia, the United Kingdom, the United States, Japan and Asia.

         Tourism Auckland operates seven visitor information centres – at the Auckland
         Airport domestic and international terminals, at SKYCITY in Victoria St, at Princes
         Wharf, on Waiheke Island (at Oneroa and Matiatia Wharf) and on Great Barrier
         Island. These centres serve more than one million visitors annually.

         Tourism Auckland works with individuals and groups seeking to add to Auckland’s
         tourism infrastructure, offering expertise, advice and industry contacts. It attracts
         major events to the region, and promotes others that are already being held
         here. This includes operating an events calendar on the Tourism Auckland

         Tourism Auckland also markets the region as destination for conferences and
         business incentive travel. This market is important for the spending and status it
         brings to the region. Tourism Auckland’s Business Tourism Bureau works with the
         local industry to coordinate collective marking initiatives, seek leads and prepare
         bids for large meetings.

         Specific markets, such as cruise ship passengers and backpackers, are targeted
         through joint venture marketing. Tourism Auckland works especially closely with
         the government agency Tourism New Zealand.

         International students are targeted by Study Auckland, which is part of the larger
         organisation but is also funded through membership of schools throughout the

         Tourism Auckland publishes an annual planner used by conference organisers,
         wholesalers, travel agents and others to help them plan their clients’ visits to
         Auckland. It also publishes a regular newsletter to keep the industry, locally and
         internationally, aware of new products and Tourism Auckland initiatives.

         Tourism Auckland also publishes a range of visitor guides, including the “Auckland
         Official Guide” and “Auckland Office Guide Map”. All publications refer the travel
         trade and the public to the Tourism Auckland website,
Working with the tourism industry
         Tourism Auckland holds quarterly updates for local tourism operators, ranging
         from small attractions to large hotels. These half-day seminars provide
         networking opportunities, market intelligence and business coaching.

         Regular forums with special interest sectors are also held. Market research is
         made available to industry partners and they also have access to Tourism
         Auckland’s photo library for promotional purposes. Tourism Auckland is actively
         involved in new product development and capability building of existing

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                                    Tourism Auckland – Very impressive

                             Tourism Auckland operations

Visitor Information Centres
Tourism Auckland operates 7 Visitor Information Centres known as I-Sites, the NZ branding for accredited
Visitor Information Centres. They are located at
• Auckland City, main I-Site, located at Princes Wharf, terminal for all the cruise ships,
• Auckland City, Sky City atrium,
• Auckland International Airport
• Auckland Airport Domestic Terminal
• Waiheke Island – two locations, Matiata Wharf and Oneroa township, and
• Great Barrier Island.

The I-Sites have to trade profitably as they receive no subsidies. Councils only provide funding to assist
with destination marketing. Commission earnings from sales of industry products is the top priority.

I-Site Hot Deals
Tourism Auckland has introduced a range of 14 packages, some with sightseeing tours or cruises, some
include admittances to attractions, some feature a restaurant visit and some include accommodation. This
very successful innovation has proved a WIN/WIN/WIN for customers, tourism businesses and I-Site
commission earnings

The program is designed to
• Build yield,
• Provide customers with savings,
• Introduce more business for tourism enterprises,
• Contribute to the local economy, and
• Earn commissions for the Auckland I-Site.

In NZ, details can be obtained by freecall 0800 AUCKLAND. Details are also available by email from or website

The Auckland Guide
On page 1 of this paper, reference is made to the Auckland Guide, a 96 page A5 booklet chock full of
destination information and details of 5 touring routes from the city to the outer areas of the Greater
Auckland region.

This guide is only available from I-Sites by email request or can be downloaded from the website

These guides are so popular that consumption over the last 3 months was nearly 200,000.

International students
An interesting market segment developed by Tourism Auckland is international students.

Study Auckland is a division of Tourism Auckland that was established as an initiative of Auckland City in
conjunction with New Zealand Trade and Enterprise. While the initial focus of this business unit was
student safety and well being, and advocating for quality standards relating to private teaching entities,
more recently the focus has shifted onto positioning Auckland as a global quality learning destination,
particularly in Asia.

Study Auckland is essentially a Tourism Auckland – private sector joint venture exercise. Not only does
this program attract students for extended stays, but it also seeks to promote educational continuity and to
encourage families and friends of students to visit while students are in NZ. Students come for primary,
secondary and tertiary education. Further details are shown on

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                                     Tourism Auckland – Very impressive

This is a splendid website and the message is clear - Auckland wants visitors and Auckland want to give
them every opportunity to spend their money. This website certainly reflects that Tourism Auckland is a
business unit not just a promotional agency.

There is a strong business ethos throughout the organisation and a strong market focus. This comes
through, not only from the website, but from talking to the staff.
Website well worth a visit
The website is comprehensive. The home page has an empathy for and is “talking” to the customers.
Home page features are
• An emotive welcoming message
• A clever device “What’s On in Auckland. Come on over Australia!” This is an icon to a special website
  about being in Auckland in Autumn complete with a package offering
• Next to it is another icon direct to a webpage of great package deals in Auckland
• The I-site Hot Deals are listed on the navigation bar on the left
• The I-Sites are promoted by hyperlink direct to further details
• Underneath I-Sites is “Tourism Research”. Click on “read more” and there are 61 pages of fascinating
  statistical data. While this may not be of interest to many travellers, it will certainly be of interest to the
  industry particularly prospective private sector investors
• Next comes details of some coming events in Auckland
• For Tourism Auckland members there is a webpage about tourism industry benefits and marketing
  opportunities for 2007. Quite interesting.
• Study Auckland webpage is shown on the lower section of the navigation bar.
This is a joint venture between Tourism Auckland, the NZ Ministry of Tourism and Tourism New Zealand
and 5 other Regional Tourism Organisations.

The Monitor provides quarterly snapshots of the regions involved and enables Tourism Auckland to gauge
visitor satisfaction and identify key areas in need of improvement for the Auckland region. This research
has emphasized the importance of ‘world class city environments and urban infrastructure’ in delivering
customer satisfaction, there by reinforcing the need for close working partnerships between destination
marketing entities and local government.
Tourism Auckland in conjunction with the Tourism New Zealand “What’s On” campaign had an extensive
campaign in Australia during March and April. This included Auckland specific TV commercials with a
heavy schedule of prime-time slots in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne. The TV adverts had images that
Australians would not typically associate with Auckland such as dolphins, islands, horse riding and sailing.

This was supported on 4th March by a 32 page New Zealand magazine with an Auckland section which
was inserted into leading Sunday papers Sunday Telegraph Sydney, Sunday Herald Sun Melbourne,
Sunday Mail Brisbane and Sunday Mail Adelaide. These papers have a wide reach into Queensland,
NSW, Victoria and SA. The magazine featured specific activities, attractions, dining and shopping.
Additionally Auckland deals and packages were offered.
Tourism Auckland’s business focus is illustrated by this message as part of the signature on emails
          “We’ve got Auckland all packaged up!
          Call 0800 AUCKLAND or visit for fantastic travel deals.”

      Tourism Auckland, a great example of an entrepreneurial Regional Tourism
   Organisation which is working closely with its industry members to target business
                    results, not just generic promotional activities.
                           Congratulations Tourism Auckland

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