Tourists staying in for dinner

File picture

GISBORNE food-lovers are being urged to support local establishments, after new statistics reveal visitors are favouring bottle stores and supermarkets over the town’s bars and bistros.

Latest regional tourism estimates, provided by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, show visitors last month spent $9m across the district, the majority of that in the retail sectors.

Visitors spent $2m on food, alcohol and beverages in the retail sector. That was double the amount they spent across the region’s food and beverage service sector, and USSCO Bar and Bistro co-owner Christine Boyce said the figures demonstrated the importance of local support.

“These figures are not really surprising. This winter has been particularly quiet, more so than previous years.

“I understand people don’t have a lot of spare money, and for many, going out for dinner is not a priority. But it is hard to maintain staff and overheads without enough patronage.

“I think it’s important people continue to support the local hospitality trade as much as they can so it doesn’t become unsustainable for business owners to provide quality establishments in Gisborne.”

Activate Tairawhiti tourism general manager Adam Hughes said it was important to make sure tourists experienced the region’s hospitality and service sectors.

“Our view will always be that it’s really important for the visitor economy that people are out and about and experiencing our region’s hospitality, and we have an amazing offering. Our work will and does have a heavy focus on ensuring that people are out there experiencing not only our bars and restaurants but also our tourism providers and wineries.”

Over the course of the month, another $2m was spent in the other retail, with a further $2m being spent on fuel. On top of that, visitors spent $1m each on accommodation and other tourism products.

Mr Hughes said that showed the regional tourism organisation was on the right track in its renewed focus on bringing more tourism products to the region.

Total visitor spending for the year has now risen to $165m, up $7m on the same time last year.

“That’s awesome, it’s great that it’s moving in the right direction,” Mr Hughes said.

GISBORNE food-lovers are being urged to support local establishments, after new statistics reveal visitors are favouring bottle stores and supermarkets over the town’s bars and bistros.

Latest regional tourism estimates, provided by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, show visitors last month spent $9m across the district, the majority of that in the retail sectors.

Visitors spent $2m on food, alcohol and beverages in the retail sector. That was double the amount they spent across the region’s food and beverage service sector, and USSCO Bar and Bistro co-owner Christine Boyce said the figures demonstrated the importance of local support.

“These figures are not really surprising. This winter has been particularly quiet, more so than previous years.

“I understand people don’t have a lot of spare money, and for many, going out for dinner is not a priority. But it is hard to maintain staff and overheads without enough patronage.

“I think it’s important people continue to support the local hospitality trade as much as they can so it doesn’t become unsustainable for business owners to provide quality establishments in Gisborne.”

Activate Tairawhiti tourism general manager Adam Hughes said it was important to make sure tourists experienced the region’s hospitality and service sectors.

“Our view will always be that it’s really important for the visitor economy that people are out and about and experiencing our region’s hospitality, and we have an amazing offering. Our work will and does have a heavy focus on ensuring that people are out there experiencing not only our bars and restaurants but also our tourism providers and wineries.”

Over the course of the month, another $2m was spent in the other retail, with a further $2m being spent on fuel. On top of that, visitors spent $1m each on accommodation and other tourism products.

Mr Hughes said that showed the regional tourism organisation was on the right track in its renewed focus on bringing more tourism products to the region.

Total visitor spending for the year has now risen to $165m, up $7m on the same time last year.

“That’s awesome, it’s great that it’s moving in the right direction,” Mr Hughes said.

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