Nungesser was in New Zealand last week, leading a delegation that then moved onto the Travel South roadshow
He sees big potential in the New Zealand market, not least because he feels the friendliness of the people in both destinations provides a natural synergy.
When it comes to triggers, the myriad of events is something that gives the New Zealand trade extra selling opportunities.
These range from the high profile Jazzfest through to events focused on ducks, crawfish, oranges, king-cakes and almost anything else imaginable.
Nungesser also emphasises the strong sporting culture of the state – including a growing interest in rugby union that has seen the formation of the New Orleans Gold and its move into a stadium retrofitted specifically for the sport in winter.
‘Rugby is starting up in a lot of schools and colleges as well,’ he adds.
Delegation member Jennifer Berthelot, director of communications with the Louisiana Office of Tourism, says movie tourism is another common denominator between New Zealand and Louisiana.
‘Visitors can see places that feature in movies like Interview with the Vampire, Steel Magnolias, 12 Years a Slave, Green Book, Where the Crawdads Sing and more.’
She says road trips are another attraction, including trails that revolve around food – even a gas station eats trail.
The delegation’s visit included an intimate dinner with New Zealand travel trade (think southern style food with a Kiwi slant) at Our Land is Alive, Cordis Auckland.