South Australia’s visitor economy hits more than $5.7 billion – highest level on record

15 June 2016

Leon Bignell MP
Minister for Tourism

South Australia’s visitor economy has hit a record high $5.73 billion –with the state closing in on its target of $8 billion by 2020.

The National Visitor Survey data, released today, coincides with news the State Government’s Adelaide Hills Best Backyard television commercial has won a prestigious award at the 11th Film, Art and Tourism Festival in Poland.

The Festival is one of the biggest film festivals of tourism, ecology and art in the world. The Adelaide Hills Best Backyard commercial is the second ad to receive such international acclaim - following the Barossa. Be Consumed ad winning multiple awards including the Grand Prix Award at Cannes and the world's best tourism film of 2014 at the Festival of Festivals in Vienna.

Today’s National Visitor Survey data reveals domestic expenditure has reached $4.8 billion and follows on from last week’s International Visitor Survey results showing international expenditure is also at an all-time high of $954 million.

A record number of interstate and intrastate visitors – almost 5.95 million - stayed more than 21 million nights –in the 12 months to March 2016.

Visits to regional South Australia are up 6.7 per cent to 3.7 million, accounting for 61 per cent of all domestic visitor nights. Our regions have also been the leader for growth in day trips, which have increased by 14 per cent.

Across the state, overnight trips have risen by 6.3 per cent to more than 5.9 million, with day trips up by 6.2 per cent to 12.4 million.

The new data shows a rise in visitors from New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland.

The Adelaide Hills Best Backyard commercial was produced to promote the region, its products and experiences. To watch the award winning commercial visit

Expenditure in the Adelaide Hills has reached $120 million, with tourism directly employing an estimated 1100 people.

The National Visitor Survey results are released by the Federal Government each quarter.

They follow the recent release of the International Visitor Survey figures, with spending at an all-time high and visitor numbers to South Australia up by 7.6 per cent to a record 410,000.

Quotes attributable to Tourism Minister Leon Bignell:
Today’s results are outstanding. The State Government’s $35 million investment in the State Budget is returning incredible dividends. It’s also terrific to have another South Australian campaign to be acknowledged on the international stage.

This international recognition speaks volumes about our ability to market South Australia to the rest of the world.

We are working tirelessly to get more people to visit South Australia. The State Government secured national television programs The Project and The Today Show to broadcast live from South Australia - and this means our world class experiences and events are being continually seen in millions of households interstate.

Last year we were named the Best Events State in the nation and events like the Santos Tour Down Under continue to put SA on the map.

The Convention Centre and Adelaide Oval are attracting record numbers of delegates, sport fans and concert goers.

With the state’s premium food and wine and stunning lifestyle, there really is no better place to visit than South Australia.

Back to top
ATDW-Online Visitor statistics, South Australia Restaurant Australia