Talking Tourism

Issue 607, May 7, 2020


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

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Share your virtual WA experiences with us and the world

Tourism WA has launched a Virtual WA hub on The hub brings together immersive content to keep WA’s amazing experiences at the top of consumers’ minds and provide inspiration for when they can travel again. Thanks to technology and the entrepreneurship of WA’s tourism industry, the Virtual WA hub features nature, wildlife, food and beverage, events and cultural experiences that can be sampled from the comfort of your living room. These experiences are showcased via live streamed events, interactive tours or attractions, virtual reality footage of awe-inspiring landscapes or natural phenomena, and other assets allowing travellers to get a feel of a holiday in WA. If you have immersive or interactive virtual experience content on your website or social media channels, Tourism WA can link to these from our Virtual WA hub. Find out how you can get involved here.


Tourism WA marketing webinar a success

Tourism WA’s Managing Director Brodie Carr was joined by Executive Director of Industry, Aviation and Partnerships, Anthony Hayes, last week to present a webinar on Tourism WA’s marketing plan to help the industry recover. ‘Project Rebound’ gave a broad overview of plans, including how Tourism WA is making the most of its popular social media channels while the world is in various stages of lockdown. The presentation outlined plans to initially ignite intrastate marketing, with a new campaign to launch as soon as West Australians are given the ‘green light’ to seek their own adventure within WA. The presentation can be viewed on Tourism WA’s corporate website.


Tourism WA’s Industry Support Team update

Tourism WA’s Industry Support Team, in collaboration with key partners, has so far contacted more than 500 tourism operators across Western Australia. With a shift towards recovery planning, the ongoing calls will focus primarily on marketing and the recently released Narrative Project. If your business is yet to receive a phone call and would like to speak to someone from the Industry Support Team, please email us.


The best of Australia to be live streamed across the country

Tourism Australia will be transporting the country’s incredible tourism offerings into the living rooms of Australians, with a curated live program of virtual travel experiences to inspire them to dream about their next Aussie holiday. Live From Aus will kick off on Friday, May 15 with a special one-hour broadcast at 7.30pm on The Project on Network Ten. ‘The Love Australia Project,’ supported by Tourism Australia, will be headlined by some of the nation’s favourite tourism and entertainment personalities, who will help shine a spotlight on our unparalleled offerings. For the weekend of May 16 and 17, Tourism Australia will be going live with exclusive new travel experiences, broadcasting every hour to a potential audience of more than 13 million from across Australia and around the world. An ongoing streaming program on Tourism Australia’s digital and social media channels will begin on May 18. For more information read the story on Tourism Australia’s website.


WA national parks open to local campers

Western Australia’s national parks, reserves and State forests are now welcoming locals for camping after some restrictions were lifted from midday, May 1. The change applies to most of the 268 campgrounds managed by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) and includes camping in huts along the Bibbulmun Track and Munda Biddi Trail. Online bookings are now open via DBCA’s online campground booking system. RAC Parks and Resorts' nine venues in WA are also open to local travellers. Intrastate travel restrictions remain in place, meaning people can only visit and camp within their regional boundaries. Campers will need to maintain social distancing and good hygiene. More information is available in the Minister for Environment’s media statement.


11,000 German travel agents get a taste of WA

One of the largest tour operators in Germany, FTI Touristik has launched an in-house, video training course, targeting 11,000 German travel agents. Moderated by German TV presenter Mary Amiri, the course features four clips showcasing WA’s regions and a variety of extraordinary experiences our beautiful State has to offer. The clips are a part of the largest sales campaign any State Tourism Organisation has ever launched in Germany.


2020 Qantas Australian Tourism Awards cancelled

The Qantas Australian Tourism Awards will not take place in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Australian Tourism Industry Council (ATIC) made the decision after careful deliberation, with the move meaning that while individual state and territory awards programs may continue, any Gold Award achievers will not be entered into the national program. The Australian Tourism Award program is delivered as part of the Quality Tourism Framework, and while they are deferred ATIC will continue to deliver other business development programs, including a recently launched COVID-19 Business Recovery module. The awards scheme will return in 2021, with the gala celebration event anticipated to be held on the Sunshine Coast in early 2022. Read the media release for more information.


City of Busselton introduces new support program

The City of Busselton has introduced a new Business Support Program to provide two types of grants to local businesses impacted by COVID-19. This includes a one-off Small Business Support Grant of $5,000 per applicant to support initiatives such as website design and development; digital marketing; advertising/marketing and; business strategy creation. The Economic and/or Community Development Support Grants will provide projects up to $25,000 and are available to businesses, industry associations and not-for-profit and community organisations to help them adapt to a different operating environment. For more information, visit the City of Busselton’s website. The site also includes a new Supporting Local Businesses and Economic Recovery page.


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.


City of Fremantle to promote local businesses

The City of Fremantle would like to help promote local businesses that are operating in the area. Please email the City of Fremantle with information on how your business is trading, including any details on offers, promotions or virtual events that you would like the City of Fremantle to share. Local businesses are also encouraged to tag @visitfremantle on Facebook and Instagram, and could be featured on the Visit Fremantle website.


Qantas flight cancellations extended

Qantas has released a detailed market update, extending its international flight cancellations, previously scheduled to resume next month, until the end of July. Domestic and trans-Tasman flight cancellations will also now be in place until the end of June, although the carrier says it has the ability to add some capacity if restrictions ease in the coming weeks. The carrier has secured a further $550 million in debt funding, secured against three of its wholly-owned Boeing 787-9 aircraft. You can find more information here.


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 14, on the topic: Leading Remote and Virtual Teams. 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 Industry Leadership.


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 9am (WST), May 8, and will focus on domestic tourism: what we know so far, insights and sentiment, Tourism Australia’s strategy and approach, and its new marketing initiative which will help Australians, and the world, to dream and plan their next Australian holiday. Click here to register. 


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.


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.


Friday Fizz with Freo Dockers legend

The regular Friday Fizz online Zoom meetings, which started earlier this month, have proved a hit with the tourism community. They’ve been an important outlet for people to get together regularly, share stories and socialise, and have been a good reminder that we’re all in this together. This week, former Fremantle Docker Matthew Pavlich will join Friday Fizz for a drink and a chat. In these uncertain times, there's no better time to come together and show support for one another. Places are limited, so get in quick to secure your spot by registering here.