Market Segments

9 May 2013

Visitors to NSW can be segmented in multiple ways including area of interest, demographics and purpose of trip. To better understand each of these segments, Destination NSW regularly produces profiles on different segments that exist in the NSW visitor economy.

Road trippers to NSW

NSW road trippers are defined as fully independent overnight Holiday visitors to NSW who had at least 2 stopovers on their trip. They travelled by car or van.

Road trippers to NSW (PDF 344 kb)

NSW Visiting Friends and Relatives (VFR) Host Research

The VFR segment accounts for more than a third of international and domestic overnight visitors to NSW. The NSW Visitor Host research investigates the role of the VFR hosts in influencing VFR travel and their hosting expenditure, and estimates the total contribution of the VFR segment to the NSW visitor economy.

NSW VFR Host Research (PDF 519 kb)

Domestic VFR

The Domestic Visiting Friends and Relatives visitors are Australian residents, aged 15 and over, who visited NSW for the primary purpose of ‘visiting friends and relatives’.

Domestic VFR Travel to NSW December 2015 (PDF 876 kb)

NSW Visitor Information Centre (VIC) Visitor Profile

The NSW VIC visitor profile factsheet provides insights into domestic and international visitors who visited VICs in NSW for the year ended March 2016. The factsheet reports on visitation levels, visitor origin, activities undertaken, accommodation and transport.

NSW Visitor Information Centre Visitor Profile Snapshot March 2016 (PDF 542 kb)

Domestic Caravan and Camping Travel to NSW

Domestic caravan and camping visitors are Australian residents, aged 15 and over, who have taken a trip in NSW and stayed at least one night in a caravan park or commercial camping ground, at a place 40 kilometres or more from their home.

Domestic Caravan and Camping Travel to NSW Snapshot (PDF 331 kb)

Domestic Youth Travel Snapshot

Domestic youth travellers are visitors to NSW aged 15 to 29 years. They account for 84% of all international and domestic youth overnight visitors to the State. The Domestic Youth research investigates their travel motivations, perceptions and experiences in regional NSW.

Domestic Youth Travel Snapshot (PDF 1MB)

Domestic Youth Research

International Youth - Travel

International youth travellers are overseas visitors to Australia for a period of no longer than 12 months, who visit NSW and are aged 15 to 29 years. They come to NSW for the purpose of holiday/ leisure, visiting friends and relatives, education, employment, business or other reasons.

International Youth Travel Snapshot (PDF 365 kb)

International Students

International students are any international visitors who come to NSW for the purpose of education. This market is typically characterised by a long length of stay, which in turn results in a high average spend per visitor.

International Students Snapshot (PDF 644 kb)

Working Holiday Makers

Working holiday makers (WHMs) are visitors who intend to work while they are holidaying in Australia. While the number of WHM visitors is smaller than many other market segments, their long length of stay means that they account for a significant proportion of total visitor nights spent in NSW.

Working Holiday Makers Snapshot (PDF 222 kb)

International Backpackers

The backpacker market accounts for a significant proportion of visitors to NSW. This snapshot provides key statistics relating to this important market segment as well as information on how backpacker visitation to NSW has changed over time.

International Backpackers Snapshot (PDF 766 kb)

Aboriginal Tourism

NSW has the largest Aboriginal population in Australia, and is an ideal location for international and domestic visitors to learn and engage with the world’s oldest culture. These publications provide information on international and domestic participation in Aboriginal tourism in NSW, including who is participating, where they are from and which Aboriginal tourism activities attract high levels of participation.

Please note: International Aboriginal tourism visitor statistics are sourced from the International Visitor Survey. A new survey question in 2015 provides state-specific data for international visitors participating in Aboriginal tourism activities in Australia. Aboriginal tourism data to NSW from 2015 onwards should not be compared with data in previous factsheets on Aboriginal tourism to NSW.

Aboriginal Tourism in NSW Snapshot - December 2019 (PDF 879 kb)

Food and Wine Tourism

Food and wine experiences have become key drivers of destination choice amongst many domestic and international visitors. Many regions in both NSW and Australia feature food and wine experiences as a core tourism product that is integral to the success of the local tourism industry.

Wine Tourism to NSW December 2019 (PDF 411 kb)
Food Tourism to NSW December 2019 (PDF 374 kb)
Food and Wine Research 2015 (PDF 1.2 MB)

Cultural and Heritage Tourism

Cultural tourism is a niche market segment with a focus on heritage and the arts. It includes activities such as going to the theatre, attending  concerts, visiting an art show and watching an Aboriginal performance.

Cultural and Heritage Tourism to NSW December 2022 (PDF 912 kb)

Nature Tourism

Nature tourism is a market segment based around outdoor and nature experiences. It includes activities such as visiting national parks, whale or dolphin watching, visiting botanic gardens and going to the beach.

Nature Based Tourism in NSW December 2022 (PDF 943 kb)


Event Tourism to NSW year ended December 2018 (PDF 527 kb)

Sports, entertainment and business events are significant generators of value to the NSW economy and this report puts a perspective on their contribution.It includes market shares and profile of event visitors to the State.

Short Breaks

Short breaks are an important part of the domestic and international tourism market to NSW. This fact sheet provides insights into short break visitors including information on who takes short breaks, where they go and what they do.

Short Breaks Factsheet (PDF 1 MB)

Over 55s Travel

As the over 55s market continues to expand in line with Australia’s aging population, it presents an opportunity for tourism in NSW. This document outlines the size, behaviour and needs of this highly important market segment.

Over 55s Travel Snapshot (PDF 524 kb)

Cruise Ships

Sydney is Australia’s premier cruise port and it continues to grow as a major international cruise destination. The Sydney Cruise Ship passenger survey sought to gain an understanding of the demographic profile, and travel and spend behaviour of passengers and crew of ships visiting Sydney. The survey was conducted during the peak travel period in 2014.

Sydney Cruise Passenger Survey 2013-14 (PDF 1 MB)

NSW Family Market

This document profiles NSW families and their travel behaviour in relation to their trips within Australia and overseas, and makes comparisons of domestic trips taken by Sydney families vs Regional NSW families.

NSW Family Market Snapshot (PDF 1 MB)

Accessible Tourism

New research profiles domestic overnight visitors to NSW who identified themselves with disabilities or long term health condition. This snapshot identifies the size and travel behaviour of this important market segment.

Domestic Overnight Visitation to NSW by Persons with Disabilities (PDF 1 MB)