Melbourne Cup Carnival Keeps Victoria Ahead Of The Pack

31 January 2018

The Melbourne Cup Carnival continues to show why it is the ‘race that stops a nation’, delivering record visitor numbers and an economic windfall to Victoria.

Minister for Tourism and Major Events John Eren hailed the results of the 2017 Melbourne Cup Carnival economic impact study, released today by the Victoria Racing Club.

The home-grown event injected a record $444.5 million into our economy – up 4.1 per cent from 2016.

More than 82,000 visitors flocked to Flemington from outside Victoria, with a massive jump in the number of visitors from North America (up 95.3%), Asia (up 60.8%) and Europe (up 11.7%).

The report proves it’s not just racing fever bringing visitors to Melbourne, with many staying longer to enjoy more of our state.

Visitors booked 269,050 beds, which equates to nearly $40 million spent on accommodation – up 14.6 per cent.

With frocks and hats on colourful display again last year, racegoers spent big on shopping with nearly $57 million splashed on retail and fashion.

From those on the turf to those watching from home, last year’s Melbourne Cup broadcast into 163 territories across the globe, with a staggering 7.03 million views generated across Chinese social media platforms.

The four days of the Melbourne Cup Carnival are the four most attended anywhere in Australia – and that generates big numbers for local businesses and traders.

The report proves that the benefits of this event are felt right across our state, creating jobs for more than 20,000 staff and contractors who made it possible.

It’s why the Andrews Labor Government is working to boost visitor spending through our Victorian Visitor Economy Strategy to $36.5 billion by 2025, creating even more jobs in the sector.

Quote attributable to Minister for Tourism and Major Events John Eren

“This report shows how important major events are to our economy – keeping our tourism numbers healthy, which delivers more jobs for Victorians and that is what it is all about.”

Quote attributable to Minister for Racing Martin Pakula

“The Melbourne Cup Carnival injects hundreds of millions into the economy, creates thousands of jobs and attracts visitors from all over the world.”

Quote attributable to Victoria Racing Club Chairman Amanda Elliott

These dollars filter right through the economy to sectors such as tourism, retail and fashion, hospitality and accommodation. Many jobs are created and supported state-wide through the business of Cup week.”

2017 Fun Facts:

  • Broadcast into 163 territories worldwide
  • Live national coverage for the first time into the USA through a partnership between the VRC and Fox Sports 1 US
  • Live streamed to a global audience on Twitter for the second year, reaching 1.6 million global total unique viewers
  • #MelbourneCup Twitter hashtag reached number one in five countries
  • 39 million total Snap views on Snapchat
  • 16 international horses competed, including seven from Ireland, four from the UK, and two from Germany
  • Cruise ship passengers attending the Carnival increased from 7,971 in 2016 to 8,720 in 2017, contributing nearly $11 million in value added impact
  • The purchase of 326,864 individual fashion items including 50,664 pairs of shoes, 48,585 dresses, 15,474 suits and 55,739 hats and fascinators
  • $27.1 million in spending on meals, food and beverages, and $44.8 million on wagering

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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