Melbourne Grand Prix attracts record corporate crowds despite economic downturn

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Corporate travel bookings to the Melbourne Grand Prix are up 146 per cent on last year, with corporates paying up to $4,595 per ticket to host clients for a single day.

Corporate hospitality experiences costing $1,550 to $4,595 per person for the main race day only, or up to $6,550 per person for two to three-day passes were almost sold out two weeks in advance, while general admission sold out within two hours.

Air travel data showed a 146 per cent jump in bookings around the four-day event compared with last year according to data by Corporate Traveller. Of those, only 9 per cent were international and 91 per cent were local. Of local bookings in 2024 compared with 2023, Canberra jumped by 300 per cent, Adelaide by 226 per cent, Brisbane by 191 per cent, Perth by 177 per cent, and Sydney by 194 per cent. Sydneysiders made up 36 per cent of all bookings.

Corporate Traveller compared corporate inbound and outbound flight bookings from 20-25 March to capture travel to the four-day event. It found the Thursday is the busiest day, with 25 per cent of all bookings scheduled for this day.

“It’s been a hard couple of years for many businesses, but our data strongly suggests that businesses across the country see value in major events like the Grand Prix,” said Tom Walley, Corporate Traveller’s global managing director.

“This year, we have seen a massive increase in attendance by Canberra-based corporates compared to last, however, the majority of bookings are still from Sydney, followed by Brisbane, across both years.

“While expensive, events like this are a prime opportunity to network, nurture existing relationships and develop new business and sponsorship opportunities, savvy businesses from all over Australia are beginning to make the most of those benefits.”