Tourism

Australia could experience domestic tourism surge once state borders open, says analyst

With many of the country’s favourite international haunts indefinitely off limits to Australians into the near future, domestic tourism could see a surge in demand, according to one analyst.

Rheanna Norris, associate analyst at data and analytics company GlobalData, said the extension of international travel restrictions could boost domestic tourism in the short term.

“Australian destinations which were impacted by the bushfires earlier on this year will benefit,” Norris said.

“Residents are [being] told to ‘dream about their next Australian destination’ and domestic tourism across the nation will experience a surge in demand.

“Boasting a large variety of destinations, Australia’s impacted tourism industry should focus on attracting local residents, through making transport accessible to all visitor types and promote local destinations that are most in need of tourist dollars.”

It comes as Australia’s Minister for Tourism, Simon Birmingham, warned international travel restrictions put in place to arrest the COVID-19 pandemic in-country could remain after December.

“This is a time where, unfortunately, people can’t undertake holidays and they won’t be able to overseas for quite some time to come,” Minister Birmingham told the ABC’s News Breakfast.

“And there may be a slightly earlier point in time where it becomes feasible to think about domestic travel again.

“We’re not there yet, but certainly this time is a good time for a bit of dreaming, a bit of planning. Think about that Aussie break that you might take when we do finally get to the other side of this.”

The Three Sisters, Blue Mountains, NSW (iStock.com/kokkai)

His comments follow a consistent message from the federal government, which has repeatedly said the COVID-19 pandemic will affect Australia for at least six months.

Minister Birmingham said international travel restrictions had played “a key role” and would continue to play an important part in keeping Australia safe from the potentially deadly novel virus.

Furthermore, most of Australia’s cases of COVID-19 have come from overseas travellers, including more than 600 positive infections and 19 deaths from the Ruby Princess.

In other reports, Tourism Australia’s managing director Phillipa Harrison told ABC News it was “highly unlikely” domestic travel restrictions would lift before international.

“The process is likely to be gradual,” she said.

“So, our focus will most likely start with domestic travel; we’ll be strongly encouraging Australians to holiday at home.”

Port Douglas, Queensland (iStock.com/mvaligursky)

Separate to GlobalData’s predictions, the Australian Tourism Industry Council told ABC News a rush in bookings post-COVID-19 travel restrictions was unlikely, given Australia’s economy would struggle while unemployment rates were high.

“There will be green shoots and they could shoot quite quickly,” executive director Simon Westaway told ABC News.

“It’ll be for people that have the ability to do it — so retirees, people that are financially well-off and have got a propensity to do so and do really want to travel.”

Many who lose work may not be in a position to travel until they get back on their feet, he said.

“You’re obviously going to see households with an unemployed breadwinner unable to travel,” Westaway told ABC News.

Those that do venture out, however, will find local destinations open for business.

Westaway told the outlet the industry bounced back from the summer bushfires across Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia before being hit by COVID-19.

He expects the tourism industry to do the same again once COVID-19 restrictions ease.

Dove Lake, Cradle Mountain, Tasmania (iStock.com/Hans Harms)

The Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA) believes there may not be a mad rush for Australians to holiday at home either.

Speaking to ABC News, chief executive Jayson Westbury said Australians will cast their eye to an overseas adventure as soon as they can.

“Australians have an adventurous spirit and while some might think that the minute travel bans are lifted we might all think to holiday at home, I suspect the very opposite is likely to happen,” Westbury said.

“Of course, all that depends on if people have a job, have annual leave and have the money to take the holiday in the first place.”

Featured image: Francois Peron National Park (iStock.com/Francesco Ricca Iacomino)



SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Leave a Reply

Events

Spencer Travel conference goes off with a bang!

Don’t worry, it didn’t go off with a literal bang – although fireworks are always good fun at an event.

Share

CommentComments

Midweek Interview

Midweek catch-up with Sabre’s Darren Rickey

We caught up with SVP airline global sales at Sabre, who has been living it up in Barcelona and Southern France and honestly, we’re a little offended we weren’t invited.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Airbnb officially bans parties

The Airbnb party is officially gone! Now you’ll have to get pissed in a nearby park when you go on holiday.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

TFE to bring Collection brand to Sydney

Complete with an infinity pool featuring sweeping city views, the new property is touted as a destination in itself, however, we can’t confirm that until we’re offered a free stay.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Avalon Waterways offers double Qantas Point incentive

Satisfy your point-junkie clients by scoring them four points per dollar spent on their next luxury river cruise.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Air New Zealand sets roll out date for long awaited bunk-beds in economy class

Praise the travel gods! Passengers will soon have the option to lay down in cattle class and we’re so excited we’ve decided to take our afternoon nap early.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Qantas proposes scrapping bonuses if it is “harmed”

Qantas has copped some bad press lately, but the silver lining is it’s a great excuse for Alan Joyce to get a nice makeover!

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Boeing 737 MAX mid-air emergencies revealed in new investigation

Surprisingly the investigation came from the ABC and not from Air Crash Investigation, which kind of puts the show to shame a bit.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Western travel agents banned from booking Hajj pilgrimage

Those looking to complete Hajj will have to enter the Hajj lottery, which you are still astronomically more likely to win than the actual lottery.

Share

CommentComments

Wholesalers

Virtuoso uncovers key differences in how each generation travels

Meanwhile, Travel Weekly staff are conducting our own research to tap into the zoomer market by teaching the office dog TikTok dances. It’s not going well.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Royal Caribbean Group completes its comeback with all ships back at sea

To honour the milestone, all 63 ships in the group’s fleet sounded their horns at once, which most likely scared the sh*t out of nearby fishing boats and unsuspecting wales across the world.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Virgin teams up with Flight Centre for money-can’t-buy workshop

It’s the second time a Flight Centre partnership has come up this week and it’s only Tuesday! Skroo must be feeling extra convivial this week.

Share

CommentComments