The data that the visitor tracking project team has collected allows us to investigate tourist behaviour which may cause concern around safety, such as travelling long distances during the dark hours. As we break our data down into different demographic groups we can see whether particular groups of tourists are more likely to undertake this behaviour. This sort of information can then be helpful for the formulation of tourist information campaigns and for decision-making around infrastructure provision.
A number of tourists recruited to our project were recorded on the roads (including major highways) between the hours of 11pm and 6am. Between 2 am and 4 am only a couple of tourists were generally recorded on the road but after 4 am the number increased and by 6 am up to 20 tourists were reported on the road. Almost all tourists on the road after midnight were Australian residents but some overseas tourists were driving between 11 pm and midnight.
As well as times travelled after dark we will also be examining speeds at which tourist are travelling at these times. We are getting indications from the data that tourists (like locals) like to get around as quickly as possible. Rest assured however: we are not looking to identify individuals but rather to observe differences between groups such as younger and older tourists and tourists who are Australian residents and those from overseas. However, you’ll have to say tuned for a future blog on that topic as we need to clean up the data a bit more to get a more accurate idea of the travel speeds!