Members of the Professional Conference Organisers Association are being urged to reach out to their international contacts with a loud and clear message; ‘Australia tourism is back to business as usual’.
PCOA councillor Karen Sainsbury has made the call after attending a tourism forum called by Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham and Austrade in the wake of the bushfire crisis.
“The meeting highlighted the dire situation for many tourism operators, not only in areas directly affected by the fires, but the significant flow-on effects from the world thinking Australia is on fire,” she said.
“For those in all areas of leisure tourism, concerns are for not only the immediate future but also for the longer term, as not only this year’s cancellations take effect, and for the long-term damage to brand Australia.”
Sainsbury says the minister assured the forum that the Government was committed to working with tourism bodies collaboratively to mitigate the damage on the sector, and to proactively ‘strategise’ with all parties into the future.
“Tourism Australia will turn its focus to the domestic market as well as its traditional international markets, repositioning our brand and letting all channels know that we are open for business,” she said.
“The strong sentiment was that as an industry we need clear messaging, should share what Tourism Australia messaging is in place, and take our own initiatives in letting our international contacts and associates know that for Australian tourism, it’s back to business as usual.”