Conventions create new and repeat visitors and drive regional tourism, according to a landmark study by the Melbourne Convention + Visitors Bureau (MCVB), which examined the spending and traveling habits of 3,270 delegates from 87 countries attending eight conferences. The research showed that international delegates spent an average of AUD$4,134 during their stays in Melbourne, $2,205 in regional Victoria and $3,618 in other parts of Australia. Most significantly, 63 percent of respondents were first-time visitors to Australia, emphasizing the meeting industry's in attracting new visitors.
More than a quarter (27 percent) traveled with two other people who did not attend the conference, so accompanying persons generate significant economic impact as well. Three-quarters (75 percent) of respondents indicated that attending the conference had increased their likelihoods of returning to Australia to do business in the future, and 71 percent would consider returning to Melbourne for a holiday.