They want it to rain men in NZ - man-drough
Trip Start Jan 30, 2007
632Trip End Dec 31, 2011
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Come hither, men - Tourism NZ uses 'man drought' as drawcard
Forget about extravagant ad campaigns marketing New Zealand with images of lush bush, beautiful beaches, and fabulous food - the new drawcard is our shortage of eligible young men.
Tourism New Zealand has launched a new marketing strategy in Britain promoting the nation's much-touted "man drought" as the perfect reason for British men to visit.
Statistics New Zealand this month said the Kapiti coast, north of Wellington, had just 89 men for every 100 women in the 15-39 age group, that Napier, Rotorua and Gisborne were also short of men, and that an imbalance was showing up in the major cities.
Britain's Independent newspaper reported Tourism New Zealand had sent out an unashamedly forthright press release touting the facts.
"It has been revealed that the women of New Zealand have a far more difficult job than Brits when it comes to finding Mr Right as they are currently experiencing a widespread `man drought'," runs the release.
Instead of focusing on New Zealand's traditional tourism assets, the board exploited a study which two years ago showed New Zealand women graduates aged 25-30 outnumbered by a third the similarly qualified men here.
"The situation has now reached such a level that experts claim a 32-year-old woman has as much chance of finding a partner her age as an 82-year-old," the newspaper said.
A Tourism New Zealand spokeswoman admitted the press release was unorthodox.
"I guess it is an unusual approach, but the population numbers speak for themselves, and it is a genuine problem," she said.
"It is a bit tongue-in-cheek but people are really worried about the issue.
"It's not trying to mock the country, but it is a light-hearted approach. You never know, it may well persuade some people to come and visit the country. If I was a guy, I might think about heading over there if I was single and looking for a girl."
But British men were less than impressed with the prospect of taking themselves to New Zealand in search of some loving.
Keith Burton, 28, of Prestonpans, near Edinburgh, said: "I haven't given up hope of finding a girl over here yet. It seems an admission of surrender to travel thousands of miles around the world on the off-chance you'll meet your true love there."
Fred Dutton, 32, of Edinburgh, said: "When I visited New Zealand a few years ago the only birds I met were some pesky parrots and they kept stealing my belongings. It made me wonder what the women were like."
New Zealand women outnumber men by 35,000 in the 20 to 45 age group.
Demographers say several factors are causing the increasing gender gap, including the Kiwi tradition of OE, or overseas experience. More young men leave New Zealand than women, and the men stay away longer.
In addition, more men die in their 20s, from accidents, suicide, illness and conflict, and immigration figures show that more women arrive in New Zealand than men, filling jobs such as nursing.