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New Zealand tourism minister says only wealthy tourists are welcome in the country

New Zealand Tourism Minister Stuart Nash said the country should only target wealthy tourists, not $10 a day travelers. The Guardian writes about it.

The Minister of Tourism of New Zealand expressed his dissatisfaction with tourists who want to save money while traveling.

“As for the direction of our marketing move, it will certainly be focused on high-quality tourists. We will welcome backpackers, but we are not going to target people who write on Facebook how they travel around our country on $10 a day eating instant noodles,” he said.

In 2020, Nash already said that New Zealand would be “shamelessly” targeting rich people and aiming to attract just such tourists. They, as the minister said, “fly business class or premium economy, rent a helicopter, go on a tour to the Franz Josef Glacier, and then eat in an expensive restaurant.”

According to Professor James Higham of the University of Otago and tourism expert, the assumption that “wealthy people” contribute more to New Zealand’s development than travelers on a smaller budget is not supported by research. In addition, according to him, rich tourists cause more damage to the environment than other travelers.

Before the pandemic, the tourism industry contributed 9.3% of GDP to the New Zealand economy.

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