Good time to upgrade our tourism treasures

Today’s announcement of $61.7 million in upgrades to Australia’s natural and heritage assets will go a long way to help stimulate interstate visitation, with tourism operators banking on a strong domestic market in the coming months.

“Our natural and heritage assets are a critically important part of our tourism offering. Ensuring that they are looking at their very best, and information facilities are highly valued by our visitors, will serve to replenish the devasted tourism industry,” Australian Chamber Tourism Chair John Hart said.

ABS figures for August 2020 showed tourism shed about 140,000 jobs compared to the previous year, with payroll jobs in accommodation and food service for September down a massive 20 per cent.

“Although domestic tourism cannot hope to replace the $45 billion in revenue generated by international visitors, ensuring Australia’s great assets are at their shining best will go a long way to attracting Aussies to see more of their own country,” Mr Hart said.

“We know that as soon as more of the domestic border closures are lifted, Tourism Australia will do a great job in selling this important message.

“However, this investment and the encouragement for Australians to get out there and enjoy their country should not reduce the momentum building to open out national border to visitors from low risk countries including New Zealand. Accommodation and hospitality businesses in our cities are desperate to see a return of our high yield international tourists, and through important COVID Safe practices, this can be done with minimal risk.

“Let us hope over the next month we see all internal border restrictions gone and the first flights from countries that have also done well to tackle the COVID menace.”

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