Venture Southland is focused on investigating the travel patterns of visitors to the region and using this information to support tourism infrastructure decisions.
Digital devices and navigation applications are providing unprecedented information on visitor travel patterns, direction of travel, points of interest, duration of stay, point of entry and exit from the region and for international visitors the port of arrival and departure.
GeoZone, a tool used by businesses to connect with tourists who may be in close proximity to them is used by many tourists throughout New Zealand. Venture Southland purchases raw data from GeoZone to investigate free independent travelers’ (FIT) travel patterns, including travel route and direction of travel.
The GeoZone application results incorporate:
- Domestic and international visitors and visit patterns
- Total number of unique users in the region over the month
- Total number of unique users in the region by language
- Data visualisation of the routes that tourists took and direction
- Average length of time spent in the region by users
- Location of reference points in the region (heat map style)
- Average distance travelled per day in Southland, in comparison to other regions i.e. in Auckland users travelled 123kms/day, in Southland 156kms/day
- Arrivals into the Southland region by location, by days of the month
- Location of users when they tapped on 'things to do‘
To successfully develop tourism products accurate insight into the travel patterns of FIT market is required.
The Milford Sound visitor movement project was one of the first projects Venture Southland utilised GeoZone data for, analysing tourist movements on the Te Anau–Milford Sound Highway. This analysis identified the routes taken to and from Milford Sound, revealing that 40% of free independent travelers’ using the GeoZone app were travelling via the Southern Scenic Route.
The more information that can be gathered via digital devices and navigation apps, such as GeoZone, the more closely aligned tourism products can be developed within the region. This all contributes to increasing visitors numbers and promoting Southland as a place to visit, work, live and invest in.