Events such as the Australian Open and Melbourne Cup draw thousands of visitors to the country each year – but are hotels capitalising on the attention given to major Australian cities? New stats on the back of the 2017 Melbourne Cup suggest that interest in Australian events is bigger than ever.
According to statistics released by the Victorian government, the 2017 Melbourne Cup was broadcast in 163 territories worldwide, with live national coverage for the first time in the USA through a partnership with VRC and Fox Sports. 1.6 million viewers across the globe watched on via a Twitter live stream, 39 million viewed snaps on Snapchat, and the hashtag #MelbourneCup trended on Twitter in five countries, proving that interest in Australian sporting events is certainly continuing.
The minister for tourism and major events, John Eren, hailed the results of the 2017 Melbourne Cup Carnival economic impact study, released today by the Victoria Racing Club. The home-grown event injected a record $444.5 million into our economy – up 4.1 percent from 2016.
Not only did it inject into the sporting and events industries, but there was also a significant pay off for accommodation providers. More than 82,000 visitors flocked to Flemington from outside Victoria, with a massive jump in the number of visitors from North America (up 95.3 percent), Asia (up 60.8 percent) and Europe (up 11.7 percent).
“These dollars filter right through the economy to sectors such as tourism, retail and fashion, hospitality and accommodation. Many jobs are created and supported state-wide through the business of Cup week,” said Victoria Racing Club chairman Amanda Elliott.
The report proves it’s not just racing fever bringing visitors to Melbourne, with many staying longer to enjoy more of our state – which is good news for hoteliers. Visitors booked 269,050 beds, which equates to nearly $40 million spent on accommodation. This is up by a significant 14.6 percent. Cruise ships also saw an influx in visitors, with ship passengers attending the carnival increasing from 7,971 in 2016 to 8,720 in 2017, contributing nearly $11 million in value added impact.
“This report shows how important major events are to our economy – keeping our tourism numbers healthy, which delivers more jobs for Victorians and that is what it is all about,” said Mr Eren.
From those on the turf to those watching from home, last year’s Melbourne Cup broadcast into 163 territories across the globe, with a staggering 7.03 million views generated across Chinese social media platforms.
While events across the country draw big crowds and overnight visitor numbers, the four days of the Melbourne Cup Carnival are the four most attended anywhere in Australia, and that generates big numbers for local businesses and traders.
The report proves that the benefits of this event are felt right across our state, creating jobs for more than 20,000 staff and contractors who made it possible.