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3401.0 - Overseas Arrivals and Departures, Australia, Jun 2009  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 04/08/2009   
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FEATURE ARTICLE: INTERNATIONAL MOVEMENTS — 2008–09


ALL MOVEMENTS

In the year ended June 2009 there were a record 23.8 million crossings of Australia's international borders by travellers (original series). This represents 1,100 crossings per 1,000 Australian population. The majority of movements were short-term (96%). Short-term movements have a duration of stay in Australia or absence from Australia of less than one year. Ten years ago (1998-99) there were 15.4 million crossings by travellers, representing 818 crossings per 1,000 Australian population.

Just over half of the total movements in 2008-09 were arrivals to Australia (12.0 million). They were comprised of 5.8 million Australian residents returning after a short-term absence from Australia, 5.5 million visitors arriving for a short-term stay and 662,300 permanent and long-term arrivals.

Just under half of the total movements in 2008-09 were departures from Australia (11.8 million). They were comprised of 5.8 million Australian residents departing short-term, 5.6 million visitors departing Australia after a short-term stay and 326,200 permanent and long-term departures.

A traveller may cross Australia's borders many times in a year and each movement is counted in these statistics. See the 1st paragraph of the PERMANENT AND LONG-TERM MOVEMENTS section in the MAIN FEATURES.


Short-term visitor arrivals

Trend estimates

Trend estimates provide the best method to analyse the underlying direction of the short-term visitor arrivals series. Over the ten year period ending June 2009 trend estimates, while showing monthly fluctuations have recorded long-term growth. Between the beginning of 2007 and mid 2008 the series was relatively stable but has fluctuated from June 2008. The high point in the series was January 2007 (473,500 movements) while the low point was in June 1999 (369,900 movements).

Seasonally adjusted estimates

Irregular impacts on the short-term visitor arrivals series are demonstrated by the seasonally adjusted series. The graph below shows that over the ten year period ending June 2009 a number of large variations were evident for short-term visitor arrivals to Australia. Major events that have coincided with decreases in the seasonally adjusted series include the terrorist attacks in the United States of America on 11 September 2001 and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in mid-2003. The increase in movements in September 2000 reflects the large number of arrivals at the time of the Sydney Olympic Games.

SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS, Australia
Graph: SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS, Australia


Original estimates

In original terms, 5.54 million short-term visitors arrived in Australia in the year ended June 2009. This was lower than the record 5.64 million in the year ended June 2007. Ten years ago (1998-99), 4.29 million short-term visitors arrived in Australia.

The following table shows, for selected years, the top ten source countries (based on 2008-09) for short-term visitor arrivals. For 2003-04 and 2008-09 New Zealand was the largest contributor to short-term visitor arrivals to Australia (20.0% in 2008-09). Japan was the top contributor in 1998-99 (16.9%) but its contribution is in decline (7.3% in 2008-09). Of the top ten source countries, short-term visitor arrivals from China recorded the strongest growth over the period with contributions of 1.9% in 1998-99 and 6.5% in 2008-09.

SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS, Australia - Financial Years

1998-99
2003-04
2008-09
Number
Proportion
Number
Proportion
Number
Proportion
Source countries(a)
'000
%
'000
%
'000
%

New Zealand
718.9
16.8
926.1
18.3
1 105.5
20.0
UK, CIs & IOM(b)
483.1
11.3
686.4
13.6
658.7
11.9
United States of America
393.7
9.2
430.1
8.5
451.6
8.1
Japan
725.8
16.9
687.5
13.6
403.7
7.3
China
81.6
1.9
216.9
4.3
358.1
6.5
Singapore
244.5
5.7
252.6
5.0
278.4
5.0
Malaysia
128.1
3.0
175.3
3.5
195.1
3.5
Korea
88.4
2.1
215.8
4.3
193.2
3.5
Germany
129.8
3.0
141.0
2.8
158.7
2.9
Hong Kong
138.7
3.2
132.2
2.6
149.9
2.7
All other countries
1 155.4
26.9
1 193.3
23.6
1 588.4
28.7
Total
4 288.0
100.0
5 057.2
100.0
5 541.1
100.0

(a) Top 10 source countries based on original estimates.
(b) United Kingdom, Channel Islands and Isle of Man.


When 1998-99 and 2008-09 were compared, the peak age group for all short-term visitor arrivals remained the 25-29 years age group (contributing 12.6% and 11.3% respectively). People are currently travelling at an older age with the proportion travelling over 50-69 years age group increasing from 24.4% in 1998-99 to 26.7% in 2008-09. Conversely, the proportion travelling in the 25-49 years age group decreased from 50.0% in 1998-99 to 45.1% in 2008-09. The median age of all short-term visitor arrivals was 37.7 years in the year ended June 1999 compared with 38.4 years in the year ended June 2009.

SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS, Australia - Financial Years

1998-99
2003-04
2008-09
Number
Proportion
Number
Proportion
Number
Proportion
Age group (years)
'000
%
'000
%
'000
%

0-4
75.5
1.8
96.4
1.9
121.1
2.2
5-9
95.1
2.2
122.7
2.4
127.8
2.3
10-14
133.2
3.1
162.5
3.2
171.7
3.1
15-19
224.8
5.2
274.3
5.4
336.5
6.1
20-24
392.2
9.1
485.4
9.6
569.4
10.3
25-29
542.3
12.6
567.8
11.2
623.7
11.3
30-34
452.5
10.6
532.5
10.5
502.8
9.1
35-39
406.2
9.5
465.3
9.2
471.0
8.5
40-44
374.8
8.7
462.8
9.2
447.1
8.1
45-49
370.4
8.6
436.0
8.6
457.1
8.2
50-54
362.1
8.4
420.0
8.3
456.4
8.2
55-59
291.1
6.8
372.7
7.4
410.7
7.4
60-64
229.1
5.3
277.3
5.5
360.2
6.5
65-69
165.6
3.9
189.9
3.8
253.3
4.6
70-74
101.6
2.4
107.8
2.1
134.0
2.4
75 and over
71.7
1.7
83.9
1.7
98.4
1.8
Total
4 288.0
100.0
5 057.2
100.0
5 541.1
100.0



For male visitors arriving for a short-term stay the peak age group moved from the 30-34 year age group in 1998-99 (11.6%) to the 25-29 years age group in 2008-09 (10.6%). For females the peak age group remained the same, the 25-29 years age group (13.9% in 1998-99 decreasing to 12.0% in 2008-09). The median ages of males and females increased to 39.2 years and 37.3 years respectively in the year ended June 2009. In the year ended June 1999 the comparative medians were 38.7 years and 36.3 years respectively.

SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS, Australia - Age and Sex
Graph: SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS, Australia—Age and Sex


More males than females arrive for short-term stays in Australia but the disparity between the numbers is decreasing. The short-term visitor arrival sex ratio (the number of male arrivals per 100 female arrivals) was 108 males in 1998-99 compared with 104 males in 2008-09. The highest sex ratios were recorded in the 35-39 years age group in 1998-99 (151 males) and the 40-44 years age group in 2008-2009 (142 males). The lowest sex ratios were in the 20-24 years age group (1998-99, 75 males) and the 15-19 years age group (2008-2009, 83 males).

SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS, Australia - Sex ratios at age
Graph: SHORT-TERM VISITOR ARRIVALS, Australia—Sex ratios at age


In the year ended June 2009, short-term visitor arrivals to Australia stated the main reason for journey as holiday (47%), followed by visiting friends and relatives (23%) and business (11%). While the main reasons for journey in the year ended June 1999 were the same, the proportions were different; holiday (53%), visiting friends and relatives (20%) and business (10%). The median duration of stay for all short-term visitor arrivals has remained the same in both 1998-99 and 2008-09 (11 days).

New South Wales was the intended state of stay for 39% of all short-term visitors to Australia in the year ended June 2009. The other destinations were Queensland (26%), Victoria (19%), Western Australia (10%), South Australia (3%) and Tasmania, the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory (1% each). In 1998-99, the intended state of stay proportions for all short-term visitor arrivals were mainly similar. Differences were recorded for New South Wales (41%), Queensland (29%), Victoria (15%) and South Australia (2%).


Short-term resident departures

Trend estimates

Trend estimates provide the best method to analyse the underlying direction of the short-term resident departures series. From April 2009 and onwards the trend estimate series for short-term resident departures has been suspended. For further information please see the SUSPENSION OF TREND ESTIMATES (SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES) series in the NOTES section of the KEY FIGURES. Prior to this period (April 2009) the trend estimate series has, in the main, recorded strong long-term growth from June 1999. The high point in the series, ending March 2009, was August 2008 (485,900 movements) while the low point was in June 1999 (267,500 movements).

Seasonally adjusted estimates

The seasonally adjusted series allows for the analysis of irregular impacts on the series. During the ten years ending June 2009 the seasonally adjusted estimate has mainly recorded strong growth. During the period commencing late 2000 and ending late 2003 movements remained relatively stable, with two exceptions coinciding with September 11 in 2001 and the emergence of SARS in mid 2003. Additional factors that may have contributed to short-term resident departures remaining stable during this period include the low Australian dollar in 2000, the bombing in Bali in October 2002 and the anticipation and commencement of military action in Iraq in early 2003.

SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES, Australia
Graph: SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES, Australia


Original estimates

In original terms, a record 5.8 million residents travelled overseas for short-term visits in the year ended June 2009. This compared with 5.7 million in the year ended June 2008. Ten years ago (1998-99), there were 3.2 million residents departing Australia short-term.

The following table shows, for selected years, the top ten destination countries (based on 2008-09) for short-term resident departures. While the proportion decreased for New Zealand when 2003-04 (18.8%) and 2008-09 (16.3%) were compared, it remained the largest contributor to short-term resident departures from Australia for each of the selected periods. Indonesia's contribution fell between 1998-99 (10.9%) and 2003-04 (6.9%) reflecting the Bali bombing in 2002 but increased again by 2008-09 (7.5%) notwithstanding the second Bali bombing in 2005. Australian resident departures increased to Thailand (up from 4.3% in 1998-99 to 6.5% in 2008-09) and China (up from 2.6% in 1998-99 to 4.6% in 2008-09).

SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES, Australia - Financial Years

1998-99
2003-04
2008-09
Number
Proportion
Number
Proportion
Number
Proportion
Destination countries(a)
'000
%
'000
%
'000
%

New Zealand
477.4
15.0
739.2
18.8
955.3
16.3
United States of America
323.9
10.2
342.1
8.7
500.0
8.6
Indonesia
349.0
10.9
271.1
6.9
436.0
7.5
UK, CIs & IOM(b)
306.0
9.6
351.4
8.9
420.2
7.2
Thailand
137.5
4.3
153.8
3.9
378.4
6.5
China
81.8
2.6
150.2
3.8
268.0
4.6
Fiji
104.2
3.3
161.4
4.1
220.9
3.8
Singapore
133.8
4.2
148.4
3.8
213.7
3.7
Malaysia
111.9
3.5
126.0
3.2
205.2
3.5
Hong Kong
142.7
4.5
140.1
3.6
200.1
3.4
All other countries
1 020.4
32.0
1 353.2
34.4
2 045.5
35.0
Total
3 188.7
100.0
3 936.8
100.0
5 843.2
100.0

(a) Top 10 destination countries based on original estimates.
(b) United Kingdom, Channel Islands and Isle of Man.


When 1998-99 and 2008-09 were compared the peak age group for all short-term resident departures remained the 45-49 years age group (10.9% and 10.1% respectively). Australian residents are travelling overseas at an older age with the proportion travelling in the 50-69 years age group increasing from 24.7% in 1998-99 to 29.0% in 2008-09. Conversely, the proportion travelling in the 25-49 years age group decreased from 51.1% in 1998-99 to 45.9% in 2008-09. The median age of all short-term resident departures was 39.8 years in the year ended June 1999 compared with 41.1 years in the year ended June 2009.

SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES, Australia - Financial Years

1998-99
2003-04
2008-09
Number
Proportion
Number
Proportion
Number
Proportion
Age groups (years)
'000
%
'000
%
'000
%

0-4
93.3
2.9
118.1
3.0
198.8
3.4
5-9
96.3
3.0
121.3
3.1
181.5
3.1
10-14
114.1
3.6
145.0
3.7
205.7
3.5
15-19
138.4
4.3
174.1
4.4
259.2
4.4
20-24
216.0
6.8
248.3
6.3
396.5
6.8
25-29
318.1
10.0
353.2
9.0
528.9
9.1
30-34
307.7
9.7
413.5
10.5
507.9
8.7
35-39
324.8
10.2
375.8
9.5
534.0
9.1
40-44
332.5
10.4
412.8
10.5
521.2
8.9
45-49
346.7
10.9
404.5
10.3
592.6
10.1
50-54
327.8
10.3
386.3
9.8
571.1
9.8
55-59
219.2
6.9
333.7
8.5
493.5
8.4
60-64
141.7
4.4
195.9
5.0
395.7
6.8
65-69
98.1
3.1
122.0
3.1
233.7
4.0
70-74
64.2
2.0
67.1
1.7
124.1
2.1
75 and over
49.5
1.6
65.2
1.7
98.7
1.7
Total
3 188.7
100.0
3 936.8
100.0
5 843.2
100.0



For male Australian residents departing overseas for a short-term stay abroad the peak age group remained the 45-49 years age group (11.7% in 1998-99 decreasing to 10.7% in 2008-09). For females the peak age group, while being lower than that for males, remained the same at the 25-29 years age group (10.9% in 1998-99 decreasing to 9.7% in 2008-09. The median age of males and females increased to 42.1 years and 39.8 years respectively in the year ended June 2009. In the year ended June 1999 the comparative medians were 41.0 years and 38.1 years respectively.

SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES, Australia - Age and Sex
Graph: SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES, Australia—Age and Sex


The disparity between the number of Australian male and female residents departing Australia for short-term stays abroad is decreasing. The short-term resident departures sex ratio (the number of male departures per 100 female departures) was 117 males in 1998-99 compared with 113 males in 2008-09. The highest sex ratios were recorded in the 35-39 years age group in 1998-99 (144 males) and the 40-44 years age group in 2008-09 (136 males). The lowest sex ratios were in the 15-19 years age group (75 males per 100 females in 1998-99 and 85 males per 100 females in 2008-09). The age group 75 years and over has seen considerable change with the sex ratio increasing from 77 males in 1998-99 to 107 males in 2008-09. The following graph illustrates, for short-term resident departures, the sex ratios at each age group.

SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES, Australia - Sex ratios at age
Graph: SHORT-TERM RESIDENT DEPARTURES, Australia—Sex ratios at age


In the year ended June 2009, short-term resident departures from Australia stated holiday (52%) as the main reason for journey, followed by visiting friends and relatives (25%) and business (12%). While the main reasons for journey in the year ended June 1999 were the same, the proportions were different; holiday (46%), visiting friends and relatives (24%) and business (16%). During the 2008-09 period the median duration of stay was 15 days compared with 16 days in 1998-99.

The largest contributors to short-term travel overseas in the year ended June 2009 were the most populous states. Residents of New South Wales contributed the highest proportion of travellers (36%), followed by Victoria (24%), Queensland (18%), Western Australia (14%), South Australia (5%), the Australian Capital Territory (2%), and Tasmania and the Northern Territory (1% each). In 1998-99, the state/territory of stay proportions for all short-term resident departures were mainly similar. Differences were recorded for New South Wales (40%), Queensland (15%) and Western Australia (13%).

In terms of the rate of movement for short-term resident departures (the number of movements per 1,000 state or territory population) there was considerable variation across the states and territories. Western Australia had the highest movement rate (362 movements per 1,000 population) followed by the Australian Capital Territory (325), New South Wales (295), Victoria (264), Queensland (243), the Northern Territory (235), South Australia (165) and Tasmania (126). Overall, the Australian movement rate was 270 movements per 1,000 population.

STATISTICAL SIGNIFICANCE

The above presentation of movements in estimates does not take into account whether the change in movement is statistically significant. Care should be taken when interpreting the impact of numeric and/or percentage change. Please see the Standard Errors section of this issue for more detail.


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