Aussies return to local holidays as international travel shrinks


After ten tumultuous months for Australian tourism, there is pent up demand for travel, said Tourism Australia — so get out and book your next Aussie holiday.

That’s the message from the national tourism body which today launches a week-long $5 million campaign “Holiday Here This Year” to inspire people to take a domestic break and provide much-needed support to the businesses and employees that make up the nation’s $152 billion tourism industry.

“Our country is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world and this year is an opportunity for Australians to discover why,” Tourism Minister Dan Tehan said.

“Domestic tourism is worth $100 billion to the Australian economy and our tourism industry supports more than 621,000 local jobs.”

Tourism Australia research taken in the first week of January shows consumer confidence is at an eight-month high since last May, with more than half of all Aussies considering or planning domestic travel this year.

But converting as much of this demand as possible into actual bookings is the challenge, the national body said.

Tourism spend in Australia is expected to fall by 38 per cent this financial year — a loss of almost $55 billion.

“This campaign is all about capitalising on this pent up demand by providing those people with all the content and inspiration they need to convert this desire and yearning for a holiday into actual bookings,” Tourism Australia managing director Phillipa Harrison said.

“We’re calling on people to make the most of the remaining weeks of summer and experience some of our incredible tourism offerings and in doing so, help give back to operators and communities across the country who need our support more than ever.”

The tourism industry welcomed the campaign saying there has never been a more critical time to encourage Aussies to take a break in their own back yard.

“The ongoing and tragic uncertainty around State borders means locals are reluctant to book a holiday now no matter how much they crave some time off,” said Margy Osmond, chief executive officer of the Tourism and Transport Forum.

“The prospect of having to rush home or organise refunds has meant many Australians feel it is easier to just stay at home rather than face the border closure risk. We need to work hard to encourage them to book and get out and about in this fabulous country.”

Buy your local News Corp paper every day this week for tips on saving for your next local holiday, family-oriented getaways, booking unique food and wellness experiences and travelling with pets.



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