New Zealand's popularity causing tourist problems

International travel agents say New Zealand is becoming harder to sell.

The problem is our popularity - and it's a problem that's not going away.

The 100 percent pure campaign is still front and centre when it comes to selling New Zealand.

But with tourist numbers at an all-time high - 3.5 million last year - that's becoming more difficult.

Otmar Lind is one of 400 international buyers at TRENZ, our largest tourism expo.

He sells Kiwi packages throughout Europe, and says he's changed the way he sells them because of overcrowding.

"We try and convince our customers not to go in January or February," he says.

Some of our key attractions are at capacity and infrastructure has been under strain in popular spots.

But tourists injected $14 billion into our economy last year and there are calls for more of that to be spent on providing a better experience.

"There's a particular issue with regional New Zealand where there's a small ratepayer base and lots of visitors so we need new answers to help out those regions," says Tourism Industry Aotearoa CEO Chris Roberts.

Auckland Airport's chief executive wants the Government to invest $1 billion over the next decade.

"I think there's an opportunity to spend more. The growth has come on much faster than anyone expected," says Auckland Airport CEO Adrian Littlewood.

The minister for tourism, Paula Bennett is speaking on Thursday and everyone at the Expo is expecting, or at least hoping for a pre-budget surprise.