Guest nights fall in March without Easter

A late Easter holiday is likely the cause for a 4.0 percent drop in guest nights spent in commercial short term accommodation in March 2019.

“Guest nights fell across the country in March this year compared with last year, when Easter occurred partly in March,” said Melissa McKenzie, accommodation statistics manager, Stats NZ.

Guest night numbers in March 2019 showed a 3.7 percent increase when compared to March 2017, which also had a mid-April Easter.

Compared to 2018 however, both international and guests spent fewer nights in commercial accommodation, down 5.7 percent and 2.5 percent respectively.

Other factors which Stats NZ believes could have caused the decrease were events in the South Island like the Nelson fires, the Christchurch mosque attacks, and damage caused by flooding.

Total guest nights rose 1.2 percent in March 2019 from February 2019.