A record 6.1 million people from around the globe traveled to Australia last year, according to a survey released by Tourism Research Australia on September 3, 2014. This was an 8% increase in the number of visitors who traveled to Australia during the previous year. Although Australia was an attractive travel destination for people from many countries and regions in the world, record numbers of visitors traveled to Australia from China, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the United States. Not only did a record number of tourists visit Australia last year, but they spent a record $30.1 billion during their trip to the “land down under.” This was, of course, a nice boost to Australia’s healthy economy. Visitors from just two countries – China and the United Kingdom – accounted for 29% of tourist spending in Australia last year, with 17% coming from Chinese visitors and 12% from British tourists. Tourism Research Australia also reported that the average stay by visitors to Australia last year was 26 nights, with many of them visiting family or friends in Australia and others traveling on holiday or for business.
Australia remains one of the world’s top tourist destinations, due to its beautiful beaches, laidback lifestyle, friendly people, happening cities (such as Sydney, Melbourne and Gold Coast), spectacular scenery (e.g., Great Ocean Road, Uluru, Great Barrier Reef, etc.), and increasingly cosmopolitan character resulting from sustained immigration to Australia (over 25% of Australia’s population was born overseas). In fact, many of the same factors that attracted 6.1 million tourists to visit Australia last year also motivated approximately 200,000 foreign nationals from all over the world to immigrate to Australia in 2013. A similar number of people are expected to be authorized for immigration to Australia in 2014. Many of the 200,000 foreign nationals who will immigrate to Australia this year will be approved through the General Skilled Migration (GSM) Program which offers Australian permanent residency to qualified overseas workers with good English language abilities and the education, occupation, jobs skills, and experience needed in Australia. Whether you travel to the “land down under” for vacation or business, or you immigrate to Australia to live and work long-term, you’ll discover that Australia is truly one of most incredible countries on Earth!