A tale of two states, NSW tourism boom begins while Qld ‘on its knees’

The Tweed Shire in set to reap the benefits of New South Wales opening its borders on June 1, with intrastate travel “key to our initial tourism recovery”.

Speaking to the ABC, Tweed Tourism Company general manager Bradley Nardi said the lifting of border restrictions “couldn’t have come at a better time”.

Accommodation bookings are beginning to surge, with most coming from regional NSW, and a few from the ACT and Victoria for July onwards.

“While we’ll feel the impact of the Queensland border remaining closed, impacting our traditional South East Queensland catchment of visitors, we’re also expecting that NSW residents will be keen to get out and support the regions of NSW,” Nardi said.

Over the border, the situation is not so upbeat, with the Gold Coast still reporting accommodation occupancy levels at just 4 per cent.

Estimates also suggest keeping the Queensland border closed until September will cost the city an extra $500 million in lost revenue.

Speaking to the ABC, Destination Gold Coast chief executive Annaliese Battista said “the tourism sector is absolutely on its knees”.

“Accommodation forward bookings are looking very dire,” she said.

“What we are seeing now, with the confusion around the dates for reopening, is that people who have made bookings for July, August, September and are now cancelling those bookings.”