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8634.0 - Tourism Indicators, Australia, Sep 2000  
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This article was published in the September Quarter 2000 issue of Tourism Indicators, Australia (ABS Catalogue No. 8634.0)

INTRODUCTION

In September 2000 the ABS released detailed results for the 1998-99 Household Expenditure Survey (HES). The 1998-99
HES collected information on the income, expenditure and characteristics of households resident in private dwellings
throughout Australia. This article examines the results of the 1998-99 HES, with an emphasis on the socioeconomic and
geographic breakdown of tourism related data such as recreational spending and expenditure on holidays.

HOUSEHOLD CHARACTERISTICS

In the 12 months to June 1999, Australian households spent an average of $699 each week on goods and services,
representing a 16% increase since the previous survey conducted in 1993-94. Part of this increase can be attributed to
inflation - over the 5 years since the previous survey, the price of goods and services, as measured by the CPI, rose by
10%. Over the same period, Australian average weekly household income increased by 22% to $879, while average
household size was unchanged at 2.6 people.

HES collected information on the income, expenditure and characteristics of households resident in private dwellings
throughout Australia. This article examines the results of the 1998-99 HES, with an emphasis on the socioeconomic and
geographic breakdown of tourism related data such as recreational spending and expenditure on holidays.

Average Weekly Household Income and Expenditure - Graph

In 1998-99, the largest broad categories of household expenditure were:

  • food and non-alcoholic beverages, with average household expenditure of $127 per week, representing 18% of total household expenditure on goods and services;
  • transport, $118 per week, 17% of total; and
  • current housing costs, $97 per week, 14% of total.

As in 1993-94, these categories together accounted for around half of household expenditure on goods and services. The next highest category was recreation, representing 13% of the total.
    Average Weekly Household Expenditure on Goods and Services - Graph

    RECREATION

    Spending on recreational goods and services such as holidays, books, gambling and sports fees differed between households depending on characteristics such as income, household composition, size of household and location. In 1998-99, Australian households spent an average of $89 per week on recreation, representing 13% of their total weekly expenditure. High proportions of recreational expenditure related to:

  • Holidays- domestic, 18% of average weekly household recreational expenditure,
  • Holidays- international, 14%,
  • Books, newspapers, magazines and other printed material, 9%.

    Households in the lowest income quintile (the lowest 20% of 1998-99 households when ranked according to income) spent on average $37 per week (or 11% of average weekly household expenditure) on recreation, $52 less than the national average and $129 less than the $166 (or 14% of average weekly household expenditure) spent by households in the highest income quintile (the highest 20% of households when ranked according to income).

    Average weekly household expenditure on recreational goods and services was high in the two territories capital cities at $121. Of the States, expenditure was high in New South Wales ($92) and low in Queensland and Tasmania (both at $81 per week).

    HOLIDAY EXPENDITURE

    Australian households spent about a third of the average weekly recreation expenditure on domestic and international holidays for the year ending June 1999. Selected expenses on Australian domestic holidays, which predominately include a combination of transport and accomodation costs, averaged $16 per week, with Darwin ($31), Tasmania ($22) and Canberra ($20) averaging the highest weekly expenditure by region. Average expenditure on overseas holidays was lower at $12 per week, with Canberra ($20) and New South Wales and Western Australia ($13) averaging the highest.


    Average Weekly Household Expenditure - Graph

    When examined by household income quintile group for 1998-99, households in the lowest income quintile spent on average $8 per week, or 2% of total expenditure, on domestic holidays, which is four times less than the $32 per week, or 3% of total expenditure by households in the highest income quintile group. When it came to international holidays, households in the lowest income quintile spent on average $5 per week, or 1% of total expenditure, five times less than the $25 per week, or 2% of total expenditure by households in the highest income quintile.

                  Proportion of Total Expenditure Allocated to Holidays - Graph


    Further information can be found in Household Expenditure Survey, Australia: Detailed Expenditure Items, 1998-99 (Cat. no. 6535.0), by contacting Jan Gatenby on Canberra (02) 6252 6174, or the National Information Service on 1300 135 070.
    HOUSEHOLD CHARACTERISTICS AND EXPENDITURE, By Household Income Quintile Group(a)
    Gross income quintile
    Lowest
    20%
    Second
    quintile
    Third
    quintile
    Fourth
    quintile
    Highest
    20%
    All
    households
      Household Characteristics
      Upper boundary of income quintile group ($)
    300
    552
    884
    1,373
    ..
    ..
      Average weekly household income ($)
    160
    414
    712
    1,116
    1,996
    879
      Average number of persons in household
    1.52
    2.35
    2.75
    3.04
    3.33
    2.6
      Average Weekly Household Expenditure ($)
      Total goods and services expenditure
    343
    483
    648
    851
    1,171
    699
      Recreation
    37
    58
    79
    105
    166
    89
      Holidays - Australia (selected expenses)
    8
    11
    13
    15
    32
    16
      Holidays - Overseas (selected payments)
    5
    7
    10
    13
    25
    12
      Notes:
      (a) Average weekly household expenditure may be greater than average weekly income - refer to Household Expenditure Survey, Australia: Detailed Expenditure Items, 1998-99 (Cat. no. 6535.0) for further details.


    HOUSEHOLD CHARACTERISTICS AND EXPENDITURE, By State and Territory(a)
    State
    Territory
    Aust. (b)
    NSW
    Vic
    Qld
    SA
    WA
    Tas
    Darwin
    Canberra

      Household Characteristics
      Average weekly household income ($)
    917
    931
    779
    771
    881
    752
    1,196
    1,137
    879
      Average number of persons in household
    2.65
    2.66
    2.56
    2.42
    2.53
    2.49
    2.99
    2.56
    2.6
      Average Weekly Household Expenditure ($)
      Total goods and services expenditure
    740
    718
    649
    604
    676
    593
    906
    860
    699
      Recreation
    92
    91
    81
    84
    87
    81
    121
    121
    89
      Holidays - Australia (selected expenses)
    17
    17
    14
    13
    12
    22
    31
    20
    16
      Holidays - Overseas (selected payments)
    13
    12
    9
    12
    13
    7
    13
    20
    12
      Notes:
      (a) Average weekly household expenditure may be greater than average weekly income - refer to Household Expenditure Survey, Australia: Detailed Expenditure Items, 1998-99 (Cat. no. 6535.0) for further details.
      (b) Includes Northern Territory households outside Darwin.




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