Tourism Electronic Card Transaction spend for September 2021 released

November 02, 2021

This article was produced by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE). The content you find below is exclusive to the Tourism Evidence and Insights Centre.

Domestic TECT spend in the year-ended September 2021 was up 22% from 2020

Domestic tourism electronic card transaction (TECT) spend was up 22% in the year-ended September 2021 compared to the same period last year. Domestic TECT spend was also up 14% on pre-COVID levels in the same period in September 2019. While the year-on-year change showed an increase, while monthly domestic spend showed a decrease.

Monthly domestic TECT spend for September 2021 was down 34% on September 2020. The decrease can be attributed to highly restricted travel into and within Auckland and the rest of the country being in Alert Level 3 in the first week of September.

As expected with the border closure, international spend in the year-ended September 2021 was down on previous years. International spend was down 63% on 2020 and 72% down on 2019. Spend in September 2021 saw a 25% decline on September 2020.

All regions saw strong annual growth in domestic spend, but monthly spend fell

Domestic TECT spend increased in all regions in the year-ended September 2021 compared with the same periods in 2019 and 2020 (as shown in Table 1).

Table 1: Percentage change in domestic tourism electronic card spend for the year to September 2021 compared to previous years

Region

Percent change in domestic spend from Year to September-2020

Percent change in domestic spend from Year to September-2019

Tasman

45%

38%

Marlborough

38%

34%

West Coast

37%

39%

Nelson

34%

23%

Otago

28%

31%

The impact of alert level restrictions was reflected in double-digit decline in the domestic TECT spend for all regions for September 2021, compared to the same month in 2019 and 2020 (as shown in Table 2). Auckland saw the sharpest decline in domestic spend (down 67%) in September 2021, compared to the same month last year. This is due to Auckland being in Alert Level 4 for most of September 2021 and then in Alert Level 3 for the rest of the month.

Table 2: Percentage change in domestic tourism electronic card spend for the month September 2021 compared to previous years

Region

Percent change in domestic spend from September-2020

Percent change in domestic spend from September-2019

Auckland

-67%

-72%

Otago

-33%

-3%

Waikato

-31%

-20%

Wellington

-30%

-27%

Gisborne

-30%

-10%

The regions with the highest increase in domestic spend, both at the annual and monthly level, also saw some of the largest falls in international spend. They also had a high reliance on the international tourism market pre-COVID-19.

Caution in using the TECT data

We recommend users do not add domestic and international totals together. They should be used separately. This is due to electronic card transactions (ECTs) in each market representing a different proportion of total tourism spend, meaning they are not additive. More information can be found here.

We have included the TECTs in the new Tourism Evidence and Insights Centre (TEIC)

TECT data is now available in the new TEIC in the form of interactive graphs. As well as visualising the data, you also have the ability to customise the graphs and can download them and the related data. Pivot tables are still available in the usual link to the TECT website.

The latest TECT data can be found in the Sustainable Tourism Explorer in the reliance on tourism section of the region area. Breakdowns include: