Horse Trekkers Combine to Build International Profile
A group of New Zealand
horse trekking operators have launched an
international marketing initiative which aims to promote New Zealand as
premier trekking destination.
Ridenz.com is an Internet portal providing direct access to New Zealand's
top trekking attractions, which have previously been promoted domestically
as Horse Riding - the Best of New Zealand.
Ridenz.com spokesman Rob Stanley, of Hurunui Horse Treks, says the
co-operative approach to marketing aims to promote New Zealand as a riding
holiday destination to the international market, rather than promoting
individual operators. More than 60 countries offer similar horse trekking
experiences and the group aims to increase New Zealand's profile.
The new initiative was unveiled at the international horse riding expo,
Equitana, in November and has been well received. Australia has been
identified as a key market.
"Our own survey during Equitana in 1999 showed that 24% of visitors
stand intended to travel overseas for a riding holiday," says Stanley.
"Adventure tourism operators are not eligible for any form of direct
Government export assistance, so we have decided to do it ourselves. The
partners in Ridenz.com all have a proven record of commitment to the
industry through active involvement in the development of the Quality
Tourism Standard for Horse Trekking and the National Certificate in Horse
The group is spread throughout New Zealand and offers a wide choice in
treks -- suitable for novices through to expert riders - and a range of
terrain and options. All have a track record in promoting high
environmental management standards.
Ridenz.com will also be promoted through 1200 retail travel agents and
industry principals including VIN centres. The group hopes to increase
direct bookings from overseas clients, many of which come via commission
"This initiative reflects the maturity of the adventure tourism industry
and builds on the collaborative effort that produced the Quality Tourism
Standard for Horse Trekking, for the Adventure Tourism Council. It also
shows that horse trekking and adventure tourism are premium experiences
that are making an important contribution to the tourism industry and
New Zealand economy."