Talking Tourism

Issue 597, March 5, 2020


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

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James Kwan (front) pictured with his son, Edwin (image supplied by Kwan family)

Vale James Kwan

The Western Australian industry is mourning the passing of tourism pioneer, James Kwan, who sadly died on Sunday. Tourism WA Chairman Nathan Harding said James would be remembered as a pioneer in Australian tourism. “James paved the way in developing important inbound tourism markets including Malaysia, Singapore, China and India through his Wel-Travel business, which he founded in 1988,” he said. “James was extremely generous with his knowledge of tourism and went out of his way to help others grow their businesses. He was a measured and pragmatic man, with a sense of humour and a genuine love of our State.” James served on the ATEC National Board and was a founding member of ATEC’s Asian Tourism Advisory Panel (now Market Advisory Panel). He was also known for his willingness to mentor young and aspiring members of the tourism industry. Tourism WA extends its heartfelt condolences to James’ wife, Theresa, son Edwin and the extended Kwan family.


Tourism WA ramps up domestic marketing on east coast

Tourism WA has been actively marketing our State on the east coast, through various domestic campaigns with existing partners, including Jetstar and Virgin. Both airline campaigns offered sale airfares to Perth, using Tourism Australia’s ‘Holiday Here This Year’ tagline to encourage holidaymakers from key interstate markets to travel to WA. The additional $4.85 million in funding from the State Government meant Tourism WA was able to amplify this activity to have a greater impact. Tourism WA is also currently running a Road Trips campaign in New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland, in partnership with Sunlover Holidays. This campaign includes TV ads on the Nine Network, press ads in Traveller, Escape and Delicious magazines, as well as social and digital advertising. Tourism WA is currently negotiating significant deals with major partners to encourage people to holiday within WA.  Stay tuned, details to follow soon.


WA scores double feature in Wotif Awards

Albany and Margaret River have made it onto a top 10 list of Australian towns compiled by leading online travel site The 2020 Wotif Aussie Town of the Year Awards are now in their third year and recognise trending destinations for travellers for the year ahead. Wotif’s awards are based on a location’s affordability, accommodation offering and demand as well as traveller reviews on Coming in at number seven, Albany received plaudits for its rich history and fantastic family appeal, while at number nine, Margaret River was recognised for its wine, beaches and having a “sense of adventure”. Read more here.


Nominations open for Top Tourism Town Awards

Nominations are now open online for the GWN7 Top Tourism Town category of the Perth Airport Western Australian Tourism Awards, presented by Tourism Council WA and sponsored by Tourism WA. This category recognises and rewards towns in Western Australia that demonstrate a strong commitment to encouraging tourism and increasing visitation to their destination. There are two awards in the 2020 program; the GWN7 Top Tourism Town Award and the GWN7 Small Tourism Town Award. Nominations are accepted from accredited visitor centres on behalf of a town. The winners and medallists will be announced at the WA Tourism Conference dinner on Wednesday, August 19. Visit the Tourism Council of WA website for more information.


New address for Tourism WA

As of Monday, March 23, Tourism WA will be located at new offices on Level 10, 1 William Street Perth. Our last day of operation at our current Mill Street address, is Friday, March 20. Visitors to our new offices will be able to access the lift from the ground floor and travel to our reception on level 10. Limited casual public parking bays are available at 1 William and the nearby Perth Convention Centre also offers paid public parking. More information on City of Perth parking can be found here. The premises are also conveniently across the road from the Elizabeth Quay Bus and Train Station. Please note that the office move will not affect Tourism WA staff emails and phone numbers which will remain the same.


COVID-19 update

The State Government is moving forward with its plans to prepare for and manage impacts as a result of COVID-19. Yesterday advice was issued that government funded non-critical international travel for public sector employees and ministerial staff is banned until further notice, effective immediately. Tourism WA and the Department of Jobs, Science, Tourism and Innovation is working through the implications of this ban and its impacts on our operations. A Critical Incident Management team has also been set up to continue to help manage the effects of COVID-19. The Tourism WA corporate website has links to more information.


ATE20 in Melbourne still going ahead

Tourism Australia had advised that ATE20 in May is still going ahead. Tourism Australia is following advice from the World Health Organisation and Australia’s Department of Health. Full risk assessments are carried out for all Tourism Australia events, including ATE20. Tourism Australia will continue to monitor the situation and will put in place additional health and safety measures where required. All registered delegates will be kept fully up-to-date on any developments, particularly as these may impact future travel plans.


Beware of scam email alert

An organisation posing as Tourism WA has been sending emails from the email address, promoting key messages around road trips in its subject line. Please do not click on any links in this email as it could result in your IT systems being compromised. We have reported this scam email to the ACCC and we recommend you seek advice from Consumer Protection or your local Small Business Development Corporation if you require support.




Visit Tourism WA’s corporate website for a comprehensive list of workshops, conferences and other events that may be of interest to WA’s tourism industry. To list or update your industry event, email


Register for ‘China Host’ tourism workshop

March 10: Ensure you’re ready for China when the market recovers and returns. Come along to ‘China Host’, a full-day workshop, proudly sponsored by the City of Perth and delivered by the Australian Tourism Export Council. This workshop will include a China market update, a product case study and other topics including understanding Chinese travellers, online distribution and Alipay. Click here to secure your spot.


Registrations close soon for North West workshops

Tourism Council WA will be holding tourism training workshops in Kununurra this month, covering topics including social media and digital marketing, customer service, and strategic marketing. Registrations close 5pm Tuesday, March 12 – to view the full schedule and to register, click here.


Skål International Perth networking lunch

March 12: Skål International Perth invites people working in the tourism industry to their upcoming networking lunch from 12pm on Thursday, March 12 at Fraser Suites Perth Private Function Room. The cost is $65 for guests and $55 for Skål International members including a two-course lunch with drink on arrival. The event includes a raffle with fantastic prizes with proceeds going towards Skål International Perth Travel & Tourism Scholarships. You can can register and make payment here. The Skål International Perth 2019 President’s report can be viewed here.


Destination Australia 2020 – resilience and recovery

March 12: Tourism Australia is hosting the sixth annual Destination Australia conference at Adelaide Oval. The conference brings together an incredible line-up of experts to address the themes of resilience and recovery. Now, more than ever, is the time for the tourism industry to pull together, support each other and show the world that Australia remains a safe, welcoming and world-class destination. Register now to secure your spot.


Registrations close soon for AFL tourism workshop

March 17: Hear from Tourism WA on the agency’s 2020 AFL Marketing Campaign; Optus Stadium on how the tourism industry can gain access to AFL visitors; and social media expert Meg Coffey on how to leverage social media to reach AFL followers at Tourism Council WA’s AFL Tourism workshop in Perth. Registrations close soon. For more information and to register, click here.


Register now for regional industry networking events

Registrations are now open for the Tourism Council WA’s Tourism Connect industry sundowners taking place in Kununurra on March 18 and Albany on April 1. Tourism Council WA invites members and the wider tourism industry to attend a Tourism Connect event for an evening of networking with key tourism players and industry colleagues, to hear the latest lobbying and industry news. To see the full schedule and to register, click here.


Register for Adventure Travel World Summit 2020

October 6-9: The Adventure Travel Trade Association is holding an Adventure Travel World Summit (ATWS) 2020 in Adelaide in October. During the multi-day event, delegates will have an opportunity to network with adventure-based tour operators and media from around the world, advance their professional development and knowledge of adventure travel trends, and help promote their company’s adventure product to the adventure travel industry’s influencers and decision makers. To register and for more information please click here.