Tourism Australia's domestic tourism campaign

Tourism Australia's domestic tourism campaign
By admin

While outbound tourism has been hitting record highs, domestic tourism has been the poor relation, as Australians flock overseas to make the most of the strong dollar. To put it into perspective, the latest Tourism and Transport Forum (TTF) statistics estimate that international departures will increase 5.4% this year, while domestic nights will creep up just 0.5%. With both markets up on last year’s figures, the numbers are hardly disappointing per se. But on the flipside, the TTF only expects domestic tourism to produce “modest growth” of around 0.3% per year for the next decade.

Tourism Australia, by contrast, has been quick to point to the latest national statistics, which show that domestic overnight trips grew 4% in the last quarter of 2011. Domestic spend was also up 2.3% and overnight spend registered growth of 1.6% over the same period.

The figures are commendable on the back of difficult market conditions, but still remain “well below” 2007-2008 levels, according to the latest IBISWorld forecast. And like the TTF, its expectations are equally bleak.“The domestic tourism market will remain in limbo as it loses its strategic focus and its connection with travellers, who now prefer to travel overseas instead,” the IBISWorld Tourism in Australia report said.

Stepping in

Flying in the face of the negative forecasts, Tourism Australia remains resolute. In fact, it has every confidence that domestic travel will step up to become a $70 billion market by 2020. But with the domestic travel market currently valued at around $63 billion and the years passing, Tourism Australia has intervened with a $5 million push to encourage Australians to take more holidays at home.

The push comes as Tourism Australia launched the second phase of its global marketing campaign in Shanghai earlier this month. Following on from the There’s nothing like Australia campaign, which launched in 2010, $250 million has been thrown behind various digital and social media promotions to encourage affluent travellers to visit our shores. A series of new TV ads have entered the mix, along with print and online advertising materials which will initially target those in China, the UK and the US. The campaign will also run in Australia to push more Australians to holiday in their own backyard.

Measuring the success

Naturally, Tourism Australia remains confident the campaign will hit the right chords and translate to firm bookings. Others, however, are more sceptical of its potential for success.

Industry expert and senior lecturer in tourism at the University of Technology Sydney, David Bierman, believes the campaign will strike an emotional chord among the Australian public. But, like the previous Oprah campaign, which is yet to deliver quantifiable results, he said it is unlikely to affect our spending habits. “These campaigns certainly make us feel good about our country, but when we think about the dollars, we’re quickly reminded: ‘gee, it’s good to go overseas’,” he said.

Bierman commended the campaign’s imagery for its potential to encourage interest from Chinese visitors, but was less enthusiastic about its potential to resonate among the Australian public. “This campaign will pull nicely at the heart strings, but not so well at the wallet,” he said.

Regardless of the campaign’s success, Bierman said any softening of the Australian dollar could see domestic travel gain more momentum. It may only be incremental in the short term, he said, but it could be just what’s needed to lure to the visitor numbers that Tourism Australia craves.

Email the Travel Weekly team at

Latest News

  • Aviation

FLIGHT REVIEW: The Qantas Boeing 787 Dreamliner business class

There are only a few airlines that make you feel right at home as soon as you board and fewer safety videos that leave you with a proud tear in your eye. Call it clever branding, but it really hits home! Highlighting the talented Qantas employees around the world all while promoting their broad international […]

  • News
  • Technology
  • Travel Agents

Traveltek offers travel agents new rapid deploy cruise website

Traveltek has developed an affordable and convenient solution for cruise booking websites, tailored to meet the needs of travel agents. Created with, the easy-to-deploy, customer-facing ‘out of the box’ cruise solution is available as a fully bookable website or a search-only widget and is designed for small businesses with a specific focus on growing […]

  • Tour Operators
  • Travel Weekly TV

What sets Eclipse Travel apart with Africa expert Hilary Dubyk: Travel Weekly TV

Join Hilary and Nancy on the couch in the weeks episode and learn a little more about why Hilary loves ‘the Mother Continent’ so much and why she thinks the expedition cruise space is one of the most exciting to watch in 2024. Hilary is an absolute Africa specialist who has found a home in […]

  • Destinations
  • Tourism

Surge in Australians visiting Japan

The number of Australians visiting Japan in the first quarter of 2024 increased by 46.3% compared to the same period in 2019, new data released by Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) shows. Visitor numbers in March alone were up a staggering 87.4% compared to March 2019. “These figures are fantastic to see and confirm what […]

  • Cruise
  • Luxury
  • News

Seabourn announces Western Kimberley Traditional Owners as Godparents of Seabourn Pursuit

Seabourn has named Western Kimberley Traditional Owners, the Wunambal Gaambera, as Godparents of the ultra-luxury purpose-built Seabourn Pursuit. It is the first cruise line to appoint Traditional Owners as godparents of a ship. Seabourn Pursuit embarks on its inaugural season in the Kimberley region this June. The naming ceremony will take place on Seabourn Pursuit’s […]

  • Luxury

Malolo Island Resort opens brand new Spa

Fiji’s Malolo Island has added another string to its bow – opening its $1.3 million day spa on Thursday, 18th April 2024. (Lead Image: matriarch Rosie Whitton with spa staff) Located at the edge of the resort’s luscious patch of tropical rainforest, the new “Leilani’s Spa” adds another level of elevated experiences to Malolo’s already […]