Total guest nights have fallen for a fifth successive month led by fewer international visitors staying hotels, motels, backpackers and holiday parks.
The latest accommodation survey from Statistics New Zealand shows guest nights for short term accommodation totalled 3.1 million for March. This was down 0.8 per cent on the same month driven by a 3.6 per cent fall in international guests.
International guest nights have fallen for the last five months compared with the same period a year ago.
Industry and labour statistics manager Blair Cardno said the number of international guest nights was down for both the North and South Island.
Northland and Otago recorded the largest regional falls for international guests.
"Domestic guest nights rose in the North Island, but were offset by a fall in international guest nights," Cardno said.
South Island guest nights were down 2.3 per cent compared with March 2011, while North Island guest nights rose just 0.2 per cent.
Bay of Plenty and Northland had the largest decreases of any region, while Auckland had the largest increase.
The trend for South Island guest nights continues to decline, with North Island and national guest nights also showing provisional declines, Cardno said.