It’s Everyone’s Business

We all share and enjoy the benefits of tourism on the Sunshine Coast…it’s what we love, about where we live.

Sunshine Coast residents have their say on tourism

The tourism industry is prominent for the Sunshine Coast region. The area’s 396,000 residents welcomed 3.9 million overnight visitors in the year ending December 2018, with tourism contributing 15 per cent of the region’s gross regional product.

The Social Indicators research undertaken by Tourism and Events Queensland monitors local community views on tourism. Sunshine Coast residents were surveyed with a focus on understanding their sentiment towards tourism, their local area, and the impacts of tourism on their local area. During the 2017 study, 300 Sunshine Coast residents were surveyed.

In the study, the first words that come to residents’ minds when thinking about the Sunshine Coast paint a picture of a quiet, relaxed, seaside community. Commonly used words were beautiful, beaches, peaceful, quiet, relaxed and friendly. The study reflected this strong affinity with 54 per cent of respondents choosing the statement as best describing how they feel about living in their local area – “Really like it, can’t think of anywhere else I would rather live”. 

View the 2017 Social Indicators Research

Regional tourism role

As the official tourism organisation for the region; Visit Sunshine Coast (VSC), with strong tourism member participation and community support, aims to build a unified and sustainable tourism industry that improves economic, social and environmental outcomes.

The Social Indicators research is one tool to inform and guide VSC planning. Overall, residents recognise a positive impact from tourism, though sentiment has softened around questions relating to disruption, parking or impact on environment.

Therefore, VSC is committed to targeting high value travellers – ie. increased tourism expenditure per visitor – as opposed to mass tourism numbers. This has led to a targeted focus on domestic and international travellers, education, consumer event and business event visitors mid-week to offset peak holidays, while balancing out visitation year-round. VSC is also dedicated to putting the Sunshine Coast’s natural assets at the centre of the region’s promotional strategy to ensure the delivery of long-term sustainable and competitive tourism outcomes for everyone.

View Strategic Plan 2018-2022

Benefits of tourism

  • Tourism contributes 15% of the region’s gross regional product
  • Tourism supports over 23,000 local jobs
  • Tourism expenditure valued at $3.3 billion
  • Greater cultural diversity
  • Festivals and events attract visitors and raise awareness
  • Increased regional profile
  • Increased local pride
  • New infrastructure

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Fast facts

  • Population 396,000 Sunshine Coast residents
  • 3.9 million total overnight visitors up 8.2%
  • 3.7 million domestic overnight visitors up 8.6%
  • 311,000 international overnight visitors up 3.6%
  • Over 7 million day trippers up 13.6%

    Top 10 international source markets:
  • New Zealand
  • United Kingdom
  • Asia
  • Germany 
  • USA 
  • Scandinavia
  • France 
  • Canada 
  • Netherlands 
  • Switzerland

(To year end Dec 2018)

View snapshot of latest visitor statistics