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3401.0 - Overseas Arrivals and Departures, Australia, Jun 2012 Quality Declaration 
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 03/08/2012   
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3 August, 2012
Embargoed: 11.30 am (Canberra time)
Bon Voyage: Aussies leave in the millions - highest on record

Australian residents made a record eight million short-term trips overseas in 2011-12, according to the latest figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

This is up from 7.4 million trips in 2010-2011, and more than double the numbers from ten years ago.

The most popular destination for Australian residents going overseas on short-term trips (under a year) was New Zealand, with over 1.1 million trips across the Tasman occurring in the last financial year.

The next most popular destinations were Indonesia (911,000 movements), the USA (819,000), Thailand (600,000) and the UK (487,000) . These top five destinations alone, accounted for just under half of all short-term resident departures for the year.

The most frequently cited reason for journey was for a holiday, making up over half (57%) of all short-term resident departures. Other common reasons were visiting friends and relatives (23%) and business (10%).

During 2011–12, Australian residents on short-term trips stated their average time overseas was 14 days.

Short-term visitor arrivals on the other hand, recorded 6.0 million movements in 2011–12. Although the highest on record, this has remained relatively stable over recent years.

Up until 2006-07 it was generally the case that there were more short-term visitors arriving in Australia than short-term residents departing. However, the opposite has been true since 2007–08, and in 2011–12 there were 2.1 million more short-term residents departing Australia than short-term visitors arriving.


Further information can be found in Overseas Arrivals and Departures, June 2012 (cat. no. 3401.0) available for free from the ABS web site <>.

Media Note:
  • Short-term visitor arrivals are overseas visitors who intend to stay in Australia for less than 12 months.
  • Short-term resident departures are Australian residents who intend to stay abroad for less than 12 months.
  • Figures in this Media Release are based on original series.
  • Please ensure when reporting on ABS data that you attribute the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or the ABS) as the source.

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