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Record fall in Kaikoura guest numbers

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 16/02/2017

The economic hit that Kaikoura has taken in the wake of November's devastating earthquake is highlighted in the latest visitor accommodation numbers.

The district recorded a record 41 per cent drop in guests night in November to 17,000 at its hotels, motels, backpackers and campgrounds, Statistics NZ says.

With the 7.8-magnitude quake striking on November 14, the figure represents half a month of disruption.

It compares with the 30,000 guest nights recorded for November 2015.

Business indicators senior manager Neil Kelly says half the accommodation providers surveyed were closed for the second half of the month after access to the town was cut.

"Some establishments that stayed open hosted earthquake recovery workers," he said.

"Of those that closed, some expected to reopen shortly, and some expected to remain closed for many months."

Guest nights also dropped in nearby Hurunui district in November, by 12 per cent compared with 2015.

Despite the falls in Kaikoura and Hurunui, total guest nights in Canterbury were up 1.5 per cent.

Mr Kelly said accommodation providers in Wellington might also have been affected by the earthquake and subsequent storm.

Guest nights in the city were down 8 per cent from November 2015 - the largest fall in two years.

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