We're a region that visitors love - let's build on that together.

Are you involved in the Visitor Industry or considering starting a business in the Whanganui region?

Whanganui & Partners is your ultimate resource for all things related to the Visitor Industry sector for our piece of paradise. Whether you’re a hospitality professional, accommodation provider, experience curator, or any other Visitor Industry enthusiast, we’ve got you covered. Trust us to be your reliable partner on this journey, offering practical tools and expert insights to drive your success. As Whanganui’s Economic Development Agency, we are dedicated to supporting your ambitions and fostering a thriving Visitor Industry ecosystem. 


Read about our strategic direction for Whanganui’s Visitor Sector  

Our Destination Management Plan (DMP) sets the strategic direction for Whanganui’s Visitor Industry sector, aiming for sustainable growth and preserving our cultural and natural assets. It emphasises placing the river at the heart of visitor experiences, while also developing new tourism products for the region. We recognise the significance of our heritage and art assets and aim to raise awareness through increased marketing efforts. 


To expand our visitor market, we need to reach beyond neighbouring regions and raise awareness through media engagement and public relations. This requires enhanced leadership, management, and resource allocation within the Regional Tourism Organisation (RTO). We encourage tourism operators to improve their capabilities and enhance the quality of the tourism experience, aligning with initiatives like Qualmark and the Tourism Sustainability Commitment. 


Whanganui boasts rich built and physical assets, but the pressing need lies in improving the quantity and quality of visitor accommodation. By complementing these physical assets with a diverse array of experiences, we can encourage domestic visitors to explore more and extend their stays. With a unified vision and high-quality experiences, Whanganui has the potential to establish a powerful reputation and foster a thriving tourism economy. 


Implementing this destination management plan will lead to increased visitor satisfaction, higher spending, positive word-of-mouth, and a sense of pride in what Whanganui has to offer residents and visitors alike. Let’s work together to unlock the full potential of our remarkable destination. 


Read the Whanganui Destination Management Plan


Stay connected: Join our Visitor Industry community  

Keep your finger on the pulse of what’s happening in the Visitor Industry space for Whanganui. We have a few ways to keep in touch with our team and with the wider Visitor Industry. 


Join our Visitor Industry Facebook group 

We have a Visitor Industry Facebook page where you can connect with others in the industry, share ideas, seek advice, and stay updated on industry news and events. 


Sign-up for our e-newsletter  

Our Strategic Lead – Visitor Industries rounds up what’s happening in the Visitor Industry space every few months, to put on your radar. This includes what’s on, industry updates, and notifications about upcoming workshops and projects. Sign up if you’re interested in staying informed. 


Important resources for your business 

We’ve compiled a list of helpful resources that would be useful for your business below.  


Leverage opportunities of working with your Regional Tourism Organisation 

Our Strategic Lead – Visitor Industries is the lead for Whanganui’s Regional Tourism Organisation. We’ve created an informative guide that provides information on how your business can work closely with the organisation, how to be ready for PR famil opportunities, and a trade-ready checklist.  Learn how to navigate this space and reap the benefits by reading our How to work with your RTO guide.


Amplify your business with Amplify funding  

Amplify is a one-off grant of up to $4,000 to help you realise a particular goal for your business. 


Amplify supports what you need behind the scenes to make your work resilient. Our dedicated Amplify Grant page provides valuable information on how to access Amplify Funding and take your Visitor Industry venture to new heights. 


Get digital savvy with Digital Boost  

In today’s digital age, having a strong online presence is essential for the success of your tourism business in Whanganui. That’s where Digital Boost comes in. This program is funded through the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment (MBIE) and is designed to empower you with the digital skills and tools needed to thrive in the digital landscape. Whether you’re looking to improve your website, enhance your social media strategy, or master online marketing techniques, Digital Boost has you covered. 


Book a call with our Growth Advisor   

Ready to level up your business? We have a Business Growth Advisor who works at Whanganui & Partners and delivers the Regional Business Partners programme. This programme is aimed towards businesses that are small to medium and are keen to strengthen and grow their business to the next level. Our Growth Advisor is able to take a birds-eye-view at your business in its entirety, and based on your needs, they’ll connect you with the right resources, people, and training to help move your business forward. Your first step in accessing this programme is signing up online on the Regional Business Partners programme website, then you’ll be able to set up a meeting with our in-house Growth Advisor. 


Interested in data? Read our most up-to-date monthly Visitor Dashboard or check out our Economic Dashboards

It’s no surprise that we love data. We produce an economic dashboard each month that provides information about the district’s performance and benchmarks on relevant indicators. We also develop a monthly Visitor Industry dashboard that provides comprehensive data and insights on visitor numbers, accommodation occupancy rates, key market segments, and much more. Leverage this valuable information to make informed business decisions and capitalise on emerging opportunities.  You can read about these in the monthly Visitor Industry e-newsletters.


List your business on Whanganui’s Official Discovery Guide

Broaden your reach and visibility by featuring your visitor industry business on Whanganui’s Official Discovery Guide. This official guide is a trusted resource for tourists planning their visit to Whanganui, showcasing all the local tips, secrets, and hidden gems in Whanganui across categories like Eat & Drink, See & Do, Shopping, Art & Design, and Outdoor.


Your listing will not only provide potential visitors with information about your business but also give them the ability to build their itineraries, making it easier for them to include your business in their Whanganui experience.


To get your business listed, simply  fill out our online form, providing all the necessary details about your business. Our team will review the information and get back in touch if we have any other questions.


By featuring your business in our discovery guide, you are not only boosting your visibility but also contributing to the promotion of Whanganui as a diverse and vibrant tourist destination.


Talk to us about your business   

Connect with our Strategic Lead – Visitor Industries  

About Whanganui & Partners

We work to promote Whanganui as a destination to live, visit, work, study and invest.

Our activities also include supporting new and existing businesses, bringing events to Whanganui and providing the latest economic data, analysis and commentary on the Whanganui district.

Our Partners

Our relationships form an intrinsic part of our culture and how we work as an organisation. Along with our partners, we help with the facilitation of guidance or expertise. We lead in consultation with a range of partners and stakeholders and work with them to realise the full potential of Whanganui.

Our partnerships lead to better outcomes for our businesses and community.

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