Visit South Burnett president Jason Kinsella

February 6, 2024

More than five million people visited the South Burnett region in 2023, according to statistics released by local tourism organisation Visit South Burnett (VSB).

The data, collected by research company Roy Morgan for Southern Queensland Country Tourism (SQCT), estimated there were 5,151,974 visitors to the South Burnett between January 1 and December 26, 2023.

More than half (53 per cent) stayed 2.6 nights on average and spent an average $141 per night, equating to $385,007,017 tourism dollars.

VSB president Jason Kinsella – from Moffatdale Ridge Winery – said it was pleasing to see a solid increase in daily visitor spending as this was bringing dollars to the wider business community.

“I welcome the release of the latest visitor numbers and believe it vindicates South Burnett Regional Council’s decision a number of years ago to place their faith in industry to deliver destination marketing in the South Burnett,” Jason said.

“I am pleased to see these numbers reflect our own statistics, which have shown solid growth year on year since the inception of VSB.”

The SQCT figures showed tourism numbers across the region were up 35.4 per cent from 2022.

“I think this is a real tribute to the depth of tourism product available in our region and the excellent level of service our members are delivering to visitors,” Jason said.

“As a tourism operator myself, this is a great result and gives us the confidence to invest in future expansion.”

The figures show about 83 per cent of visitors to the South Burnett come from within Queensland, with 53 per cent of the rest coming from NSW.

VSB also shared statistics collected daily by volunteers from the South Burnett Rail Trail Users Association which showed a 25 per cent increase in visitors staying at the Wondai free camp (6107) and a 31 per cent increase at the Wooroolin free camp (3815) from 2022 to 2023. 

Extrapolating from data collected during a Western Downs study into grey nomad spending in 2008 (ie. $88 per night stay), visitors at the two free camps would have spent more than $870,000 in the region over the past 12 months.

[Disclosure: SBO CEO Dafyd Martindale is on the management committee of the South Burnett Rail Trail Users Association]


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