From Cruise Ships to Louis Vuitton: Adelaide's October 2023 Visitor Economy Report

Last updated 06 Dec, 2023

October marked a robust period for the city's visitor economy, as revealed in the latest Visitor Economy Report analysed by the Adelaide Economic Development Agency. This overview highlights key findings, shedding light on the factors contributing to the city's success in attracting visitors and sustaining growth.

For a detailed look of metrics and insights, download the October 2023 Visitor Economy Report here.

Major Highlights:

  • Cruise Ships Return: October witnessed the return of cruise ships to Adelaide's shores, contributing to the city's overall strong visitor economy performance.
  • School Holidays Impact: The momentum from September's school holidays extended into October, further boosting tourism.

Key Events:

  • OzAsia Festival and Harvest Rock: These standout events drew substantial crowds, solidifying Adelaide's appeal as a cultural and entertainment hub.
  • Diverse Portfolio of Events: Smaller yet impactful events such as Feast Festival and ADL Fashion Week added vibrancy and generated significant activity.

Accommodation Trends:

  • Positive Hotel Occupancy: October's hotel occupancy exceeded 2022 levels, even with a 7% year-to-date increase in supply.
  • Business Event Influence: Well-attended business events like the Australian International Education Conference contributed to hotel occupancy, with October hosting 22 events attracting over 32,000 bed nights.

Business Events Outperformance:

  • Consistent Growth: Business event attendees consistently outperformed the previous year, with October ranking as the third strongest month of the year.
  • November Outlook: The forecast anticipates another strong month for business events in November.

Short Term Rental Accommodation (STRA) and Visitor Information:

  • STRA Booking Surge: Airbnb and VRBO bookings surged, surpassing April levels, with an average stay of four nights during October.
  • Increased Enquiries: Visitor Information Centre reported increased inquiries, with visitors predominantly originating from Europe, the UK, and New Zealand.

OzAsia Festival Impact:

  • Impressive Attendance: OzAsia Festival, held from 19 October to 5 November, attracted over 180,000 attendees across 190 diverse events.

Expenditure Insights:

  • Night-Time Expenditure Decline: Despite positive indicators, night-time expenditure fell below 2022 levels, primarily due to reduced discretionary spending.
  • Segment Decline: Both dining, entertainment, and retail experienced declines, although retail showed two consecutive months of month-on-month growth.
  • Luxury Segment Boost: Louis Vuitton's opening in Rundle Mall coincided with the highest day of spending in the luxury and specialised goods category.

Future Outlook:

  • Strong Forward Hotel Bookings: Despite uncertain macroeconomic conditions, forward hotel bookings remain strong, driven by upcoming business events and concerts.
  • New Year's Eve Considerations: However, New Year's Eve hotel booking numbers are reported to be lower than other states.

To find out more about how working with AEDA can benefit you as a tourism operator, check out the Working with AEDA document or see more here.