Global Ideas for Local Issues

The G Project, powered by G Adventures and its non-profit foundation, Planeterra, is encouraging people to submit ideas that will help solve social and environmental issues at a local level. Submissions will be showcased online with the winner announced at the Future of Tourism event in Canada on 24 September 2013. The winner will receive a US $25,000 development grant and the backing of Planeterra to bring their project to life. Participants can register their ideas in the categories of community, freedom, beauty or knowledge.

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Marriott and Ikea Partnership

Marriott International has announced a partnership with Ikea's hotel arm to build a new low-cost brand aimed at hip, young millennial travellers. Ikea's Inter Hospitality arm will own the first properties while Nordic Hospitality, which manages several Marriott hotels will be responsible for the operation. The first Moxy Hotel will open in Milan, Italy in early 2014 and Marriott plans to open 150 Moxy Hotels in Europe over the next 10 years including Germany, Austria, United Kingdom, Ireland, Belgium, Italy, The Netherlands, Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden. This will bring the hotel chain's total room inventory on the continent to 80,000 rooms by 2015.

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Airport Sleeping Pods

Abu Dhabi International Airport has installed dozens of sleeping pods that allow passengers to nap in privacy. The Finnish-designed "GoSleep" chairs feature a sliding door / roof designed to either partially or fully enclose passengers within the pod, shielding them from surrounding noise, light and crowds. The pods are available for use at $12 an hour and will be upgraded to provide Internet access, storage space for luggage and power sources for electronic devices.

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Renowned National Geographical Traveller Magazine has rated a Kenyan lodge Eagle View, Mara Naboisho among the “Top 25 Best Eco-lodges in the world”.  Located in the Rift Valley province of Kenya, bordering the famous Maasai Mara National Reserve, the region is famous for the wildebeest migration -  Kenya’s jewel of pride. Read Kenyan Journalist Mary Mwendwa’s recent account of their leading lodge,  guest services, community development projects and environmental initiatives.

Please click here for the full article.


Kenya’s Eco Lodge Recognised Among World’s Best



Wallace and Gromit Campaign

VisitEngland has launched a £4 million domestic advertising campaign featuring Wallace & Gromit to encourage Britons to holiday at home this year. A range of travel agents including TUI, Thomas Cook, Advantage, Midcounties Co-op Travel, Premier Travel and The Travel Network Group have signed up to support the campaign with promotional activity. Also on board are operators Attraction World, Superbreak, Hoseasons, Bourne Leisure and Shearings Holidays. The campaign forms part of 'Holidays at Home are GREAT,' a pan-UK government funded strategy designed to raise £80m in additional tourism spend and over a million overnight stays.

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Seoul Walking Tour Mobile App

The Korea Tourism Organization has launched a new Seoul Walking Tour Mobile App, a smart tour guide for sixteen famous tourist destinations located in downtown Seoul. The App is the eleventh smart audio tour guide App to be released by KTO, following in the wake of those devised for the UNESCO World Heritage sites and the historical remains of the Silla and Baekje kingdoms. The App which is available in English, Japanese and Chinese versions and is equipped with GPS utility, so even visitors on their first trip to Korea can easily find their way around Seoul to all the major tourist attractions simply by holding the app in the palm of their hand.

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Global Australian Travel Site

TripTide is a global community of Australians, international travellers, travel veterans and would-be visitors to Australia who combine local and traveller’s knowledge to create a comprehensive source of travel-related information and products about the country. TripTide is offering tour operators, visitor attractions and accommodation providers the opportunity to promote their businesses through TripTide on a commission-only basis.

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Airport Chatter

AirportChatter is a mobile app that brings business profiles, reviews and networking opportunities to the airport itself. The free app currently supports 30 of the busiest airports in the US, offering detailed venue profiles, real-time reviews from the travelling community, and ways to connect with other travellers in the airport. Eventually, AirportChatter aims to expand its functionality to include flight tracking and transportation booking.

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Larapinta Trail Camps

The Northern Territory Government has launched new architecturally designed semi-permanent campsites on the Larapinta Trail over 223 kilometres along the West MacDonnell Ranges in Central Australia. The brainchild of World Expeditions include 150sqm campsites incorporateing technologies including water-free composting toilets, solar lighting systems, a hybrid grey water disposal system and the structure can be removed to allow the land to recover in the off-season. The Parks and Wildlife Commission, Central Land Council and the traditional owners are working together in managing the National Park and exclusive sub-leases for the camp-sites.

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Ecotourism Plan

The Queensland Government has unveiled a draft Ecotourism Plan designed to make Queensland a world leader in ecotourism by 2020. A direct outcome of the inaugural DestinationQ workshop held in Cairns last year that recognises Queensland’s greatest competitive advantage lies in is its unique natural environment.

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Adventure Safety Guidelines

New Zealand is developing comprehensive safety guidelines for adventure tourism operators and activities including canyoning, caving, indoor rock-climbing, heli-skiing, quad-biking, high wire crossing and abseiling. The guidelines are an outcome of a review of risk management and safety in the adventure and outdoor commercial sector in New Zealand. The Tourism Industry Association New Zealand was given responsibility for developing the guidelines in consultation with leading experts from each sector and support from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

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Low Cost French Airline

Air France has launched a new regional airline called "HOP!" which has a fleet of 98 airplanes and offer 530 flights a day to 136 destinations. The goal is to lead the way among low cost airlines with a strong product while Air France will continue to serve the short and medium haul routes which command a high ratio of business travellers along with the long-distance network from Paris-Charles de Gaulle.

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Green Training

Travel trade in the UK is being urged to take part in a new 'go greener holidays' training campaign recently launched by the Travel Foundation. The quick and easy quiz has been devised to test people's knowledge on sustainable tourism issues and will be available on the charity's new free training portal. The Travel Foundation plans to offer a wider range of training courses on the site, and is aiming for 5000 travel staff to have taken a course by the end of the year. The Travel Foundation is also launching a service to develop bespoke training quizzes so that courses can be tailored specifically to an organisation's needs.

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Plant for the Planet

A year after launching its sustainable development program, Accor hotels has planted over three million trees worldwide. PLANET 21 represents Accor’s commitment to being a better corporate citizen and ensuring sustainable development at more than 3,500 hotels worldwide. To be considered quality hotels, they must fulfill criteria such as installing low-flow water regulators and energy efficient light bulbs, implementing recycling programs and offering healthy meals. Accor has also invested in educating over 16,000 employees on environmental and social best practice using a dedicated e-learning course in eight languages.

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Victorian Trails Strategy

The Victorian Trails Coordinating Committee (VTCC) has appointed consultants to assist with the development of new Victorian Trails Strategy. The strategy will establish key directions for the development, management, research and marketing of cycling, walking and multi-use trails that have the potential to drive tourism visitation. Established in 2012, VTCC members comprise Tourism Victoria, Department of Sustainability and Environment, Department of Transport, Department of Planning and Community Development, Sports and Recreation Victoria and Regional Development Victoria.

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Tourism Opportunity Plan

Central Coast Tourism will work together with the local councils, the State and Federal Governments and Regional Development Australia to encourage investment in the region to grow both visitor numbers and length of stay. The Tourism Opportunity Plan identifies important investment and infrastructure opportunities for the Central Coast of New South Wales, including 44 catalyst projects that have a significant impact towards supporting sustainable tourism growth in the region.

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World Tourism Report

The World Economic Forum's Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report 2013 assesses 140 economies worldwide based on the extent to which they are putting in place the factors and policies to make it attractive to develop the travel and tourism sector. The 2013 Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index reveals that Switzerland, Germany and Austria lead the world in terms of travel and tourism competitiveness with Spain, the United Kingdom, the United States, France, Canada, Sweden and Singapore completing the top 10. Australia finished in 11th spot and New Zealand 12th.

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Small-Scale Accommodation Survey

The small-scale accommodation providers can use a new free online tool to benchmark their business performance against similar establishments in their sector, region and state. If you operate a hotel, motel or serviced apartment with less than 15 rooms, or a visitor hostel or caravan park of any size, you are invited to get involved.  The survey is an initiative of Tourism 2020 and has been developed by Tourism Research Australia and leading hospitality benchmarking company STR Global.

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Regional Visitor Economy Fund

The New South Wales Government has announced funding of $21.6 million over the next three years for the promotion of regional NSW tourism. The Regional Visitor Economy Fund (RVEF) will be managed and administered by Destination NSW and supports investment on a matched dollar-for-dollar basis including applications for product development and marketing activities that contribute to doubling overnight visitor expenditure by 2020. The program commences on 1 July 2013.

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Pilot Sustainable Tourism Destinations

The Global Sustainable Tourism Council has selected the Cusco-Sacred Valley-Machu Picchu in Peru, Lake Llanquihue in Puerto Varas and Frutillar in the Lakes Region of Chile as part of the second round of piloting the criteria and indicators for destinations. These countries will join destination management organisations in testing the baseline sustainable tourism criteria and indicators, which will provide these destinations improved decision-making frameworks and an increased ability to evaluate progress in the sustainable development of tourism. Tony Charters is on the Destination Stewardship committee of the GSTC.

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SEGRA - Call for Papers

The SEGRA national steering committee is now calling for papers that demonstrate successful regional development strategies around the following themes and action agendas:

  • Developing and valuing close local and regional communities
  • Valuing place – loving your city, loving your region
  • Making the most of human and social capital through co-creativity and learning communities
  • New technology and industry development in regional Australia
  • Global positioning and stewardship of local assets
  • Optimising regional character and authenticity in a digital world
  • Enterprise facilitation – collaboration and commercialisation

Offered papers need to be submitted online at by 15 June 2013
For more information, or to receive regular updates please email

National Tourism & Events Excellence Conference - Register Now!

The 2013 National Tourism and Events Excellence Conference will be held on the 22 - 23 July 2013, at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Victoria. The Conference promotes the continuous development of a profitable, sustainable, innovative and professional tourism and events industry. The program showcases Australia’s leadership in Tourism and Events, whilst also promoting best practice across a range of industry sectors. The conference features a number of international keynote speakers.

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Global Eco Heads to Queensland in November 2013. 

The Global Eco Tourism Conference, Ecotourism Australia's annual premier conference, is heading to Queensland this November. Global Eco brings together leading players from across the globe to examine best practice across sustainability, ecotourism, cultural and heritage tourism, tourism in protected areas and climate change response. 

Ecotourism Australia CEO Rod Hillman said the Conference attracts  the sectors that play a direct and indirect role in delivering ecotourism and green travel, and focusses on best practice case studies, emerging trends and critical business responses. 

"I would like to acknowledge the support of the the Department of Tourism, Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games and the Queensland Department of National Parks, Recreation Sport and Racing." The host destination and dates will be announced soon, along with a call for papers for the 2013 event."

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New Staff- Tony Charters & Associates

Andrew Sivijs

Andrew Sivijs is the Director of Strategic Partnerships at TCA. He is responsible for the development of strategic partnerships, alliances and stakeholder support for TCA events and conferences. He also plays a key role in business development and consulting services providing strategic and tactical direction for communications and marketing activities.

Andrew has wide-ranging experience in communications, marketing, project management, stakeholder consultation, local and state government engagement, and strategic planning and report development and has a thorough understanding of the tourism and leisure industries. He has worked on significant projects at a regional and national level and specialises in marketing and editorial development, business strategy and tourism planning and development.

Belinda Ha


Belinda Ha is the Event Coordinator at TCA. Belinda is a Bachelor of Journalism graduate from the University of Queensland.  Previously a member of the events team with The Queensland Media Club, she has successfully supported the planning and coordination of events ranging in size from 200 to 850 guests including the Queensland Election 2012 Leaders’ Great Debate.