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Rugby World Cup lures New Zealand holidaymakers to the United Kingdom
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  21 October 2015

International Travel and Migration: September 2015  –  Media Release

New Zealand residents took 235,600 overseas trips in September 2015, up 7 percent from September 2014, Statistics New Zealand said today. Most of the increase was to Australia and the United Kingdom.

"The Rugby World Cup kicking off in September coincided with a large increase in New Zealand residents holidaying in the United Kingdom," population statistics manager Joel Watkins said. "The number of holidays to the United Kingdom nearly doubled from September 2014."

New Zealand residents took 2.38 million overseas trips in the September 2015 year, up 6 percent and a record number.

Australia contributes over 1.30 million to annual visitor arrivals 

In the September 2015 year visitor arrivals totalled 3.04 million, up 9 percent from the previous year. Australia contributed 1.30 million visitors, China 327,900, and the United States 237,300.

Visitor arrivals to New Zealand numbered 217,000 in September 2015, up 12 percent from September 2014.

Annual net gain of migrants continues to rise

New Zealand had a record net gain (more arrivals than departures) of 61,200 migrants in the September 2015 year. The annual net gain in migrants has been setting new records for the last 14 months. India contributed 12,900 to the net gain, China 8,500, the Philippines 4,700, and the United Kingdom 3,700.

The record annual permanent and long-term net gain of migrants in the September 2015 year resulted from 118,900 migrant arrivals, and 57,600 migrant departures.

Of the migrant arrivals in the September 2015 year:

  • 24,700 were from Australia, with two-thirds being New Zealand citizens
  • 14,100 were from India, with three-quarters having student visas
  • 13,400 were from the United Kingdom, with most having work visas or New Zealand citizenship
  • 10,700 were from China, with about half having student visas.

Seasonally adjusted figures showed a net gain of 5,600 migrants in September 2015.

See the International Travel and Migration: September 2015 commentary and tables for more information.


For media enquiries contact: Kim Dunstan, Christchurch 03 964 8700,
Authorised by Liz MacPherson, Government Statistician, 21 October 2015

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