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Cricket, family ties drive Indian arrivals in Australia to record high

Some 302,900 Tourists from India headed Down Under in 2017, up 15% from a year earlier


Sydney Opera House
Sydney Opera House. Photo: Wikipedia

Chinese and jumped to a record last year as growing middle-class wealth in the world’s most populous nations fuels the travel bug.

Almost 1.4 million visitors from mainland traveled to Australia last year, a 13 percent increase from a year earlier, according to the Tourists from India climbed to 302,900 over the period, a 15 percent advance from a year earlier.

“While much of the focus has been on Chinese tourism, Indian visitors are coming Down Under in their droves,” said Ryan Felsman, a senior economist at the securities unit of “Most are coming to visit family members studying in and pilgrimages to the Ground and Bradman Museum in Bowral are also a priority.”

The Asian century is increasingly coming to pass as economic modernization in the region’s two giants brings hundreds of millions of new consumers keen for overseas travel. Australia’s pristine coastline, sparkling harbor and the vast Outback showcased in actor Paul Hogan’s 1986 comedy proved a magnet for U.S. and Japanese tourists late last century.

The decline in the currency from its 2011 peak during the mining boom has made Australia attractive to visitors again and local operators are scrambling to refurbish outdated tourism infrastructure or build new facilities to cope with the influx.

Chinese visitors are also expanding their horizons, with trips to the island state of Tasmania soaring 40 percent in the year through September. There are now increasing calls for direct flights between mainland and the state capital, Hobart, according to Felsman.

and India’s growing and more affluent middle class are attracted to Australia’s clean and unique environment, high quality restaurants and hotels, fresh food, safe cities, museums, art galleries and warm weather,” he said.

First Published: Mon, February 19 2018. 14:46 IST