The latest tourist figures are hopeful for the hospitality industry.
According to the latest international visitors survey, tourists are spending record amounts during their holidays in Australia, a fifth of which is spent on food and wine.
The results showed that tourists spend one in every $5 on eating and drinking – a 12.6% increase ($531 million) since December 2013.
The rise has coincided with a rigorous campaign by Tourism Australia – named Restaurant Australia – to establish the country as a food and wine destination.
Tourism Australia managing director John O'Sullivan, said: “Drawing attention to the people, produce and places that lie behind our country's exceptional food and wine experiences has been a major focus of Tourism Australia's global marketing activities for the past 18 months and, pleasingly, we're seeing the benefits of this work clearly reflected in these latest tourism figures.”
The Restaurant Australia campaign – responsible for attracting Rene Redzepi's Nomad to Sydney next year – has managed to beat its target of increasing annual spend two quarters earlier than hoped.
The major increase in spending is coming from Chinese and Indian tourists, who have increased their spending by 32% and 39% respectively. They are also arriving in greater numbers – Chinese visitor numbers rose by nearly 22% while Indian visitors were up by 20%.
The most popular state to visit remains NSW, although Victoria has now taken second place thanks to an 11% rise in arrivals, overtaking Queensland.