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New Zealand Just Had a Record Year for Tourism — Thanks to Hobbits

Excerpt from Sydney Morning Herald

Feb 01, 2014 6:00 am

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Visits from Australia, the U.S., China, Germany, and other nations grew this year. Wait until the finale of the film series next year for even better numbers.

— Jason Clampet

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Films in "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy helped New Zealand double its tourist spending in under five years.. Thomas Becker / Flickr


… In addition to a bumper year, December also recorded the highest number of arrivals in any month with 381,000 clearing immigration controls.

Tourism NZ chief executive Kevin Bowler says the growth for the year was driven by traditional long-stay markets and the biggest source of tourists – Australia.

The number of American tourists visiting was up 21.3 per cent on a year earlier while the number of arrivals from Australia, Canada and Germany also grew strongly.

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