WELLINGTON, Sept. 27 (Xinhua) -- New Zealand's tourism recovery is on its way with international visitor arrivals reaching the highest level since the borders were closed in March 2020, Tourism Minister Stuart Nash said on Tuesday.
For the first time since March 2020, the number of overseas visitor arrivals exceeded 100,000, with 134,200 visitors in July, according to the statistics department Stats NZ, a strong sign that the tourism sector is bouncing back, Nash said.
"We know tourism operators have had it tough, but these figures present a light at the end of a long tunnel," he said, adding the 134,200 overseas visitors that arrived in July nearly doubled that of the month prior.
The growth in total airline capacity is estimated to reach nearly three quarters of 2019 levels by the end of the year, the minister said.
Queenstown continues to lead the tourism recovery, buoyed by a strong ski season, with winter arrivals this year reaching at least 90 percent of the same period in 2019.