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  • Renee Cluff

    Email Renee Cluff

    Cairns Airport passenger numbers show only a slight drop in total visitors

    Figures from Cairns Airport have put a question mark over claims of a struggling tourism industry in Tropical North Queensland.

    In January, international passenger numbers were slightly up compared with the same period in 2018, however there were fewer domestic visitors.

    Figures for the 12 months to January show the number of international arrivals was unchanged on the previous year, while domestic visitors were down 0.4%, a total of 11 thousand passengers.

    However, according to Tourism and Events Queensland, there was about a 10% fall in accommodation occupancy in January, as well as a drop in room revenue.

    Figures aren’t yet available for February, when the Townsville flooding occurred.

    The monsoon event didn’t affect Cairns but is being blamed for a drop in visitors.

    Tourism Minister Kate Jones will travel to the city next week to host a round table aimed at forming a strategy for growth in the sector over the next 12 months.

    CEO of Cairns Airport, Norris Carter, will be among those attending.

    “We welcome the Minister’s visit to Cairns next week and look forward to discussing ideas to increase tourism to Cairns and the broader region,” he said.

    Other groups involved in the talks include Tourism Tropical North Queensland, Cairns Regional Council and the Cairns Convention Centre.