Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Visitors return to the Whitsundays after Cyclone Debbie

Visitors return to the Whitsundays after Cyclone Debbie
September 27, 2017

A joint marketing campaign between Tourism and Events Queensland and Flight Centre, Virgin Australia and Infinity Holidays is helping to drive a return of visitors from across to the Whitsundays in the aftermath of Cyclone Debbie.

The marketing push following the devastating Category 4 storm, included $1 million worth of support to sell Queensland destinations interstate as well as a targeted advertising campaign across TV, radio and social media.

Announcing the results on World Tourism Day, Queensland Tourism and Major Events Minister Kate Jones explained that the money had been well spent.

Minister Jones stated “the number of people who booked a trip to the Whitsundays through Flight Centre in June increased 18% while in July there was a massive 44% increase.

“The numbers are just as impressive in terms of room nights with accommodation booked through Infinity Holidays increasing 10% in May and 17% in June.

“In July, that figure grew even further to an increase of 52% year-on-year for the number of room nights booked through Infinity Holidays.”

Flight Centre Head of Customer Experience Darren Wright said the company was impressed by the results, advising "Australians are very supportive of our regional tourism markets so we knew it would only be a matter of time before people started flocking back to the beautiful Whitsundays for their holidays.

"These figures show an incredibly strong resurgence for the region and prove that even during winter, you can't beat a Queensland holiday.”

Minister Jones said the digital aspect of the campaign was also strong, with digital advertising recording nearly six million impressions and reaching more than 2.8 million people.

She added “advertising on Facebook generated an extra 2.8 million impressions, reaching nearly 850,000 people.

“Following Cyclone Debbie we knew how important it was to send the message that the region was open for business and was still one of the best places in Australia to visit for a holiday.

“The best way to support our tourism industry was to take a holiday at home and encourage others to do the same so they too could enjoy the unique and unrivalled experiences on offer throughout Queensland.

“Tourism in the Whitsundays alone is worth $1.6 billion and supports more than 7000 local jobs which is why it was so important the Palaszczuk Government acted quickly and decisively after Cyclone Debbie.”

Tourism Whitsundays Chief Executive Craig Turner said the results were great news for the Whitsundays, commenting “these are fantastic results off the back of these marketing campaigns and they really speak for themselves.

“We are very grateful to Minister Kate Jones for her support of the Whitsundays and also our trade partners Flight Centre, Virgin Australia and Infinity Holidays and of course Tourism and Events Queensland, who we work side-by-side with.

“The Whitsundays might have experienced an extreme weather event in March but looking out the window now you would never know.

“Our tourism operators have been absolutely fantastic in the ensuing months, getting out there and doing what they do every day, delivering the same excellent service and experience.

“The Whitsundays offers a premium Great Barrier Reef experience, including being able to see the iconic Heart Reef, as well as island and mainland experiences, so we really do have it all when it comes to holidaying in Australia and it is very heartening to see Australian holidaymakers coming to region and supporting us”.

Islands redevelopments fast-tracked 
Further backing for the recovery of the Whitsundays has seen two holiday island projects gain special status with the Queensland Government granting special status to the $100 million Hayman Island project and a $65 million repair and refurbishment of Daydream Island.

The Queensland Office of the Coordinator-General has been working closely with the proponents of the Hayman Island project - Mulpha Australia Limited - and the Daydream Island Resort and Spa to ensure the resorts are up and running next year.

Commenting on the projects, Minister Jones advised “Hayman Island project works include the removal of debris and damaged infrastructure, redevelopment of the resort’s accommodation and staffing village, and extensive replacement of exotic species landscaping.

“The repair and refurbishment of Daydream Island will include removing debris and damaged infrastructure and redeveloping the resort’s accommodation, dining, recreational, reception and facilities.

“A desalination plant is also in the works to improve security of water supply, and creating a safe harbour through the development of existing rock wall protection.

“These projects are among $14 billion in new tourism infrastructure for Queensland in the pipeline right now.”

Mulpha Australia Limited Chief Executive Greg Shaw welcomed the announcement, adding “this is an important step on restoring Hayman Island Resort to it’s iconic luxury resort status following the impact of Tropical Cyclone Debbie.

“Hayman is recognised as a one of the greatest luxury experiences in the world and is one of Australia’s most recognised and highly awarded tourism assets.It is an integral part of the Whitsundays tourism economy and will again provide an enormous boost to the local economy on reopening in late 2018.

“We are working hard on Hayman’s restart, and we look forward to the resort once again employing 350-400 staff and welcoming guests from all around Australia and the world.” 

Images: Promoting the Whitsundays (top), post storm recovery work at the famous Whitehaven Beach (middle) and Hayman Island (below).

26th September 2017 - DESTINATION MELBOURNE COMMITS TO WORLD TOURISM DAY 2017 

22nd September 2017 - GROWTH ONGOING IN AUSTRALIAN TOURISM AS SPENDING EXCEEDS $103 BILLION

12th May 2017 - STATE TOURISM BODIES SEE ‘MISSED OPPORTUNITIES’ IN FEDERAL BUDGET 

11th May 2017 - WHITEHAVEN BEACH REOPENS AFTER RESTORATION AND CLEAN-UP 

10th April 2017 - DAYDREAM ISLAND’S $50 MILLION REDEVELOPMENT BROUGHT FORWARD

2nd April 2017 - TOURISM INDUSTRY TO REBUILD AFTER CYCLONE DEBBIE

29th March 2017 - QUEENSLAND TOURISM INDUSTRY RALLIES FOLLOWING CYCLONE DEBBIE 

24th August 2015 - LINDEMAN ISLAND RESORT PROJECT MOVES FORWARD

7th June 2015 - TIRED ISLAND RESORTS HURT THE APPEAL OF GREAT BARRIER REEF TOURISM 

2nd February 2015 - CHINESE INVESTORS BUY DAYDREAM ISLAND


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

GUNNEBO

Gunnebo is a global provider of security and access control solutions and services with sales companies in 31 countries in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, the Americas and Australia.…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Security / Ticketing / Venues

 
 

revolutioniseSPORT

revolutioniseSPORT is the emerging market leader in online club management in Australia. Whether it is memberships, registrations, events, online sales or governance tools - revolutioniseSPORT is the…

read more

Recreation / Sport / Technology

 
 

LANDER & ROGERS

Lander & Rogers' Sports Business Group is the leading sports law practice in Australia, representing over 150 national and international sporting bodies. Our clients include international…

read more

Legal

 
 

PlayRope

Playrope Aqua-Fun, are the Australian & New Zealand exclusive distributors for Vortex Aquatic Structures International, the world leader in aquatic playgrounds and urban water landscapes.…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Parks / Play / Recreation

 
 

APT Asia Pacific Pty Ltd

APT (Advanced Polymer Technology) is the leading global manufacturer of polyurethane-based materials, acrylic coatings and synthetic turf products for sporting and recreational applications. From…

read more

Environment / Sport / Surfaces / Technology

 
 

TouchCloud Global

Activating skyscapes for tourism, art, leisure and living TouchCloud Global (TCg) is a highly specialised international consultancy, broker and principal, devoted solely to activating and energising…

read more

Attractions / Consultants / Recreation / Safety / Tourism

 
 

SICO SOUTH PACIFIC

SICO is at the forefront in innovative mobile folding and rolling, space efficient tables, stages, dance floors and many other products which help our customers optimise their use of space. Image…

read more

Entertainment / Events / Venues

 
 

CENTAMAN

Centaman has been a market leader in Enterprise Software Solutions for the leisure and recreation industry and both profit and not-for-profit attractions since 1991. It offers a wide range of software…

read more

Access / Billing / Fitness / Technology / Ticketing

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business