Billions world-wide share in reef's story


A potential 2.9 billion people world-wide have heard the news of the world's first rideshare submarine within a week of launching on the Great Barrier Reef.

Tourism and Events Queensland, in a unique partnership with rideshare giant Uber, aim to showcase the diversity and vibrancy of the Great Barrier Reef from new angles by launching the unique tourism experience which runs for an exclusive four-week period.

The launch has seen almost 150,000 people from around the world rush to enter the competition to win a trip to the Great Barrier Reef to experience scUber themselves.

Tourism and Events Queensland Chief Executive Officer Leanne Coddington said the campaign is about telling the story of the reef.

"The Great Barrier Reef is the world's largest coral reef and Australia's greatest natural wonder," Ms Coddington said.

"This campaign gives us the opportunity to balance perceptions of the reef and tell the many positive stories about the reef's diversity, resilience, world-leading management and the part that tourism plays in inspiring visitors to understand the value of the reef and become advocates," she said.

"To have generated more than 3,500 articles for people around the world to read a positive story about the reef is exactly what we hoped to achieve.

"Great Barrier Reef experiences are also being marketed through key distribution partners in our key western markets to support the campaign and encourage people world-wide to experience the Great Barrier Reef and Queensland themselves.

"After achieving such phenomenal awareness of the campaign within the first week and now with the first ever 'on-demand' customers commencing their trips this week we now look forward to seeing more stunning images start to flow over the next three weeks of the campaign - showing the world just how beautiful and thriving the reef is."

The reef also stands to benefit with projects to help reef conservation set to benefit from the campaign, as well as the scUber itself recording data to go towards reef research.

Uber is donating $100,000, as well as the equivalent value of every scUber ride taken, to Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef to support their conservation projects. The scUber campaign has also been carbon offset by Uber.

Uber's Regional General Manager Australia and New Zealand Susan Anderson said the focus of this partnership is to showcase the wonder and beauty that exists on the Great Barrier Reef through a unique form of movement.

"The opportunity to raise awareness for this Australian - and global - icon, was one we felt passionate about," Ms Anderson said.

"The sustainable protection of the Great Barrier Reef is of global importance and we hope with the launch of scUber, people from all over the world will be inspired to also help protect it."

Three days after watching the launch of scUber on the Australian news, avid diver Terry Purcell surprised his wife of 32 years with the once-in-a-lifetime experience, being successful as the first people to book the experience via the Uber app. Terry's mission was to show his wife the underwater world that he passionately loves.

"You can't put a cost on this. For my wife to be able to see the reef at 12 metres below sea level and to see the bottom of a true coral atoll like I do when I dive was just magic," Mr Purcell said.

There is still time to enter the competition at - entries close 1:59pm AEST Saturday 1 June.

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