Talking Tourism

Issue 608, May 14, 2020


Welcome to this week’s edition of Talking Tourism newsletter.

Image 1

$14.4 million package to support tourism industry and jobs

The State Government, through Tourism WA, has launched the $14.4 million WA Tourism Recovery Program to support tourism operators around the State to adapt and refocus their businesses in the COVID-19 landscape. The initiative includes two funding programs – the WA Tourism Recovery Fund and the Tourism Business Survival Grants. The Fund provides an initial $10.4 million in one-off cash grants for up to 1,600 individual small businesses around the State. The $6,500 grants will provide immediate support to eligible tourism operators, with annual taxable wages of less than $1 million, including accommodation, attraction, and tour and transport businesses.  More information on the Tourism Recovery Fund and the online application form can be found on Tourism WA’s corporate website. The second, $4 million Tourism Business Survival Grants package, will be available for tourism operators dealing with exceptionally difficult circumstances - with grants of $25,000-$100,000 available. More information on the Tourism Business Survival Grants package, including how businesses can apply, will be released shortly. Tourism WA’s Managing Director Brodie Carr and Tourism Minister Paul Papalia hosted a webinar for industry post announcement. You can view the presentation on our corporate website.


Adventure Awaits social media activity

Tourism WA has launched ‘Adventure Awaits’ on its social channels as a holding strategy, until a new intrastate campaign is launched. The social media activity will cement WA destinations at the top of people’s wish lists for when they can travel again by showcasing the incredible adventures, epic road trips and amazing tour operators who are ready to welcome people for a holiday when the time is right. Its launch follows the recent unveiling of ‘Western Australia Tourism - Our Story’, aligning with the brand strategy of The Spirit of Adventure. As part of ‘Adventure Awaits’, Tourism WA will be sharing stories from tourism operators across the State who have been preparing, innovating and perfecting their product for when they can welcome people again. We encourage tourism operators to engage with ‘Adventure Awaits’ on their own social channels. To find out how, visit our corporate website.


WA roadmap revealed for easing COVID-19 restrictions

The WA Government has released a four-phase roadmap to ease COVID-19 restrictions, with the first phase already in place. Phase 2 comes into effect on Monday, May 18 and allows cafes and restaurants to reopen with meal service (including within pubs, bars, clubs, hotels and casinos), limited to 20 patrons and in compliance with the four square-metre rule. Businesses will need to prepare a COVID Safety Plan before they re-open to protect staff and customers. More information will be available on this requirement next week via Regional travel restrictions have also been relaxed, with travel allowed between: South West, Great Southern, Wheatbelt and Perth-Peel regions; the Mid-West, Gascoyne and Pilbara regions (excluding the biosecurity zone); the Goldfields-Esperance region (excluding Biosecurity zone); and within Kimberley Local Government areas (the Commonwealth’s biosecurity zone remains in place). Read the WA Government media statement and find out more in the Phase 2 Frequently Asked Questions.


Brits tempted with a grand holiday to Western Australia

Western Australia was front and centre in Trailfinders’ promotions to its UK database last week. In a round-up of ‘incredible holidays for under a grand’ (£1,000), a 10-day fly/drive along WA’s Coral Coast highway was given top billing in a list that included iconic destinations like India’s Golden Triangle, Cape Town and South Africa’s wine lands and USA’s top cities. Trailfinders is Britain’s largest operator to Australia. Brits were also tempted by Lake Hillier’s extraordinary colours, which featured on the cover of a 12-page supplement on planning a dream Australian holiday in the Daily Mail. The special edition produced in partnership with Tourism Australia also highlighted the Kimberley, Ningaloo’s whale sharks and the Indian Pacific as not-to-be-missed experiences. Tourism WA’s 13-day virtual reality tour was featured as one of the top 10 virtual reality travel tours in UK newspaper the ‘i’, reaching an audience of over 200,000.


WA on show in Germany and France

Due to increased demand, Tourism WA is hosting various training webinars for Germany and France throughout May.  This includes a press webinar themed ‘People along the dream routes between Perth and Darwin’, which will pitch stories featuring the Coral Coast Highway, Warlu Way and Gibb River Road. In addition, the Aussie Specialist coffee break sessions will focus on WA’s top five beaches and Indigenous experiences, while the Aussie Specialist webinar will feature Perth and of the most popular routes in Western Australia - the Coral Coast Highway. A final Aussie Specialist webinar will be held at the end of May focusing on WA’s nature and wildlife.


India Host program for Western Australia

The India Host program, brought to you by Tourism Australia, Austrade and the Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC), begins for WA on May 19. The training provides industry with information to assist them in welcoming Indian visitors to the State. India Host consists of four modules - Culture Ready, Product Ready, Service Ready and Trade Ready. All modules are delivered via live 90-minute webinars, with the option to self-drive offline. ATEC is offering a 50 per cent subsidy for tourism operators to upskill, ready for the market’s return. To take advantage of this offer use promo code ‘ATEC’. To book, click here or email.


Register for Tourism Australia industry webinar

Tourism Australia is hosting a series of webinars on coronavirus each week. The next webinar will be held tomorrow at 7am (WST), May 15. Presenters include Chair of Tourism Australia and Experience Co, Bob East, who will talk about the state of the tourism industry, investment as well as challenges and opportunities ahead. Eva Seller, Tourism Australia’s Regional General Manager for Continental Europe, will provide an update on the state of play in Germany, France and Italy and John Hart, Executive Chairman of the Australian Chamber of Commerce – Tourism, will discuss the Tourism Restart Taskforce and give some insights into how businesses can approach reopening. Click here to register.


ATEC helps prepare your business for future success

The Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC) is running a Road to Recovery tourism tutorial series – a program designed to provide the tourism industry with tools to bounce back after the impacts of COVID-19. The 45-minute tutorials are free of charge and are hosted every Thursday at 12 noon (WST). Register here for next week’s tutorial, which will take place on Thursday, May 21, on the topic: Rebuilding your tourism experiences for the domestic market. The tutorials are run in addition to ATEC’s Build Back Better industry webinar series, which provides insights from panellists who discuss a range of industry-relevant topics and challenges. The next webinar will be held at 11am (WST) on Wednesday, May 20, on the topic The return of domestic tourism – are we ready? Register for the webinar here.


Applications open for Tourism Australia program

Tourism businesses can now apply for Tourism Australia’s Business Events Australia Advance Program 2020-21. The program has been adapted to be more accessible to help industry recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. The partner marketing initiative provides funding to marketing and distribution projects that aim to bring business events to Australia. Applications for the first round close on Monday, June 1. For more information, click here.


Information on COVID Safe App

The Australian Government has launched a new voluntary coronavirus app, called COVIDSafe. The app is an important public health initiative that will help keep the community safe from further spread of coronavirus through early notification of possible exposure. The health initiative uses technology to automate and improve what state and territory health officials already do manually. COVIDSafe will speed up the process of identifying people who have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with coronavirus, quickly stopping further spread of the virus in the community. The app can be downloaded from App stores.


COVID-19 Business Recovery Tool now available

Tourism Council WA has launched a COVID-19 Business Recovery Tool to help businesses identify strategies on how they will respond to various stages of COVID-19 restrictions being lifted. It will provide businesses with a recovery plan following the completion of the module. If you are interested in the Business Recovery Tool, please email Tourism Council WA.


COVID hotline and FAQs

The WA Government COVID hotline helps answer questions West Australians have on the current COVID-19 State of Emergency. The hotline number is 13 26 842 (or 13COVID) and operates from 7am to 10pm every day. The hotline includes a range of options for callers, including pre-recorded information and direction to appropriate websites or call centres for specific information. Tourism WA also has a dedicated coronavirus webpage and FAQ document that is regularly updated with relevant industry information, contact numbers and links.