LATEST FIGURES: Coast visitors staying longer, spending more
OVERNIGHT visitors have spent a record amount on the Fraser Coast according to the latest figures from Tourism Research Australia.
An estimated 740,000 people visited the region last year to September, spending $430.1million and up to $144 per night.
Fraser Coast Tourism & Events general manager Martin Simons said it was great to see the region following the trend of the State, and the entire country, in posting record results.
"The Fraser Coast is also performing well relative to other regions with the highest year-on-year growth in expenditure in the State and the second-highest percentage increase in total visitor numbers behind Townsville," he said.
Mr Simons said the increased spend was driven by a 6.9percent jump in total visitor nights to $3million, while the average length of stay to 4.1 nights was also marginally up.
"The big move was in holiday-maker nights which climbed 7.8percent to 1.9million with a stable average length of stay at 4.4 nights," he said.
The number of day-trippers was stable at 779,000 and their associated spending was $68million.
Fraser Coast Regional Council Mayor George Seymour said he wants to see the Fraser Coast as the holiday capital of Queensland.
"We don't want to be Gold Coast we don't even want to be Sunshine Coast, we want to be a relaxed place where people can come to the best beach in Australia and enjoy fantastic public spaces and make many fond memories," Cr Seymour said.
"I moved here after coming here on holidays.
"The people from Victoria staying here now in our caravan parks will be residents here in five years time.
"People come here and see that it is paradise and they make plans to move here."
He called the region an ideal holiday destination and a key part of the local economy.
"Fraser Coast is paradise whether it is whale watching, Fraser Island, WetSide Water Park there is a lot to do," he said.
"You can explore the history of Maryborough or go see the hinterland, you can go for a swim."