Edition 153 · February 2021
Tony Charters and Associates
Circulated to 10,000 professionals worldwide
Tourforce During COVID-19
In this extraordinarily confronting and damaging time in the tourism industry we will continue to publish Tourforce monthly. However, we will not seek to offer advice or updates on COVID-19, as industry bodies and government bodies are best equipped to do this – with destination specific information.
We welcome short stories on innovations, and success stories and stories that reflect the positive things that the tourism industry is doing to ensure that the industry returns and re-builds. Submit stories to firstname.lastname@example.org
We want to place on record our thanks to those in business, government, research and the not-for-profit sectors who are working to get us through this challenging time.
Limited Edition Kids
Virgin Limited Edition have launched a new online series for children where they will be taken on a journey around the world to learn about different cultures and traditions from the comfort of the living room. Virgin Limited Edition is Sir Richard Branson’s unique collection of retreats including a private island, mountain retreat, game reserve lodge, tented camp, vineyard and luxury villas.
Further information: https://www.virginlimitededition.com/en/kids-virtual-series
Event Here This Year
Tourism Australia through Business Events Australia has launched the latest version of a business events marketing campaign as part of a broader domestic strategy to aid the tourism industry’s recovery following the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The campaign seeks to drive increased demand across the sector by promoting the value of face-to-face events and showcasing the breadth and quality of Australia’s business events offering. It will be rolled out over six months across traditional media, out of home advertising, digital and social media channels, as well as ongoing content and PR activity.
Further information: https://businessevents.australia.com/en/event-here-this-year.html
Holo Industries has created a contactless touch menu system to ensure no germs are transferred between customers when taking orders. The contactless touch system that takes orders via a hologram with users pushing buttons as they would on a usual touchscreen. The system comes encased in an aluminium frame designed to be mounted flush to surfaces for easy use.
Further information: https://www.holoind.com/restaurant-and-kiosk/
Policy & Planning
Save The Travel Industry
The Australian travel industry have teamed up to launch Save The Travel Industry, a national campaign that aims to pressure the Australian government to extend support to the tourism industry after JobKeeper ends on 28 March 2021. The campaign conceptualised by Matt Leedham, founder of travel industry publications, KarryOn.com.au and Travel to Change. It calls on Australians to lobby the Federal Government to extend a rescue package to the industry from March 2021 to 2022 when international borders are expected to reopen.
Further information: https://savethetravelindustry.com.au/
Heritage and Visitor Strategy
The New Zealand Department of Conservation has a Heritage and Visitor Strategy which provides guidance to sustainably manage visitors to protect and enhance the values of New Zealand’s natural, cultural and historic heritage. It will help inform visitor and heritage management decisions across the country, stakeholders and government in line with the New Zealand-Aotearoa Government Tourism Strategy.
Further information: https://www.doc.govt.nz/heritage-and-visitor-strategy
Adventure Travel Guide Standards
The second edition of the Adventure Travel Guide Standards has been published by the Adventure Travel Guide Standards Governance Board with the support of the Adventure Travel Trade Association. Created by volunteers, members, ambassadors, industry partners and staff the guide better aligns with the needs of the adventure travel industry. It includes updated research and examples used by Governments, destination managers and companies when evaluating the quality and performance of their own guides and determining appropriate training programs.
Further information: https://www.adventuretravel.biz/education/guide-standard
Safety & Security
Health and Safety Tracker
Travelport has launched an airline health and safety tracker to help travellers match their travel needs with safety measures. The tool is free of charge and highlights the safety measures being undertaken by more than 80 of the world’s largest airlines including face masks, socially distanced seating, temperature checks, improved air filtration, enhanced cleaning programmes, reduced onboard food and beverage services, as well as mandated traveller health certification.
Further information: https://www.travelport.com/covid19
Care Fiji Commitment
Fiji has gained recognition from the World Travel & Tourism Council for its Care Fiji Commitment. Tourism Fiji introduced the ‘Care Fiji Commitment’ program to ensure the safety of travellers to Fiji in post COVID-19 conditions including enhanced safety, health and hygiene protocols. It was developed in consultation with Fiji’s Ministry of Health and Medical Services, COVID-19 Risk Mitigation Taskforce, Fijian Government and tourism industry stakeholders.
Further information: https://www.fiji.travel/carefijicommitment
Silky Singapore Airlines
In January 2021, SilkAir started the integration into Singapore Airlines as part of a planned merger announced in 2018. For more than 30 years, SilkAir has been the regional wing of Singapore Airlines flying to cover 40 destinations in Asia Pacific. SilkAir’s 9 Boeing 737-800 aircraft will progressively join the Singapore Airlines fleet with a new livery, upholstered seats and cabin crew.
Further information: https://www.singaporeair.com/en_UK/sg/travel-info/sia-narrowbody/
Smart Ticketing System
The Queensland Government has launched a $371 million world-class Smart Ticketing system across all 19 tram stations of the G:link light rail network on the Gold Coast from December 2020. Visitors and tourists can trial Smart Ticketing by tapping on and off using a go card, Mastercard or American Express contactless debit or credit card, smartphone or smart device.
Further information: https://translink.com.au/about-translink/projects-and-initiatives/smartticketing
National Tourism Icons Program
Visitors to Tasmania’s Freycinet National Park will enjoy new views of Wineglass Bay thanks to a $7.2 million upgrade to lookout facilities. The project was co-funded through the Federal Government’s National Tourism Icons Program and the Tasmanian Government’s Tourism Infrastructure in Parks and Improving State-wide Visitor Infrastructure.
The Matagarup Bridge Climb has opened with a viewing platform 72 metre above the Swan River offering 360-degree panoramic views of Perth. The iconic Matagarup Bridge was completed in 2018 and provides pedestrian access over the Swan River from East Perth to the Optus Stadium precinct. The project was supported by the Western Australian Tourism Case Management Framework which assists new tourism businesses navigate government processes.
Further information: https://www.zipclimb.com.au/
Come Down for Air
Tourism Tasmania has launched its latest marketing campaign in New Zealand inviting Kiwi’s to Come Down for Air. The campaign kicked off in January 2021 with a 36-hour mass media takeover in Auckland including primetime television advertisements supported by radio and online ads. The integrated campaign is designed to create strong consumer awareness and understanding of what Tasmania has to offer in a competitive travel market.
Further information: https://www.discovertasmania.com.au/nz
Grants & Funding
Regional Events Support
The New Zealand Government has launched a $50 million Regional Events Fund which will be distributed between the nine regional tourism marketing groupings in a bid to stimulate domestic tourism. The fund is part of a $400 million Tourism Recovery package which is designed to support the tourism and events sector by replacing some of the spending from international tourists due to the border closure due to COVID-19.
Regional airports across Western Australia will receive upgrades under the $3 million Regional Airports Development Scheme. The funding will support 25 projects due to be completed by the end of the year including resealing runways, upgrading airstrip lighting, airport development planning, installation of animal exclusion fencing and improving safety and facilities for the Royal Flying Doctor Service Operations.
Further information: https://www.transport.wa.gov.au/aviation/regional-airports-development-scheme.asp
Indigenous Tourism Festival and Events
The Queensland Government has announced $200,000 in new funding to support Indigenous festivals, events and jobs for the Year of Indigenous Tourism. The fund aims to provide strategic support to showcase Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture in 2021. Supported events will generate local economic activity in the host destination, attract external visitation, drive social and community outcomes, as well as enhance the profile and appeal of the host destination.
Further information: https://teq.queensland.com/events/events-support/year-of-indigenous-tourism
Share Space Hotels
Accor Hotels, through a joint venture with the coworking group Wojo, has opened flexible office spaces in hotels in France and is now considering Spain. The hotel chain has invested in dividing its spaces into Wojo spots or corners. It is a pioneer in workspaces augmented by value-added services and aims to become the largest coworking brand and network in Europe. Further information: https://group.accor.com/en/brands/coworking/wojo
A new hotel brand in Melbourne is aimed at a generation on the go and social urbanites with a penchant for top culture. The 241-room Quincy hotel features distinctive building and interior design, three food experiences, a rooftop pool with views of Melbourne CBD, and exclusive club levels and lounge access. The Melbourne hotel is the company’s first foray into the Australian market taking their international hotel count to 13 properties worldwide.
Further information: https://www.tfehotels.com/en/about/coming-soon/
Work from Hyatt Program
Hyatt has announced the expansion of the Work from Hyatt extended-stay package to help travellers balance work-life and school-life from the comfort of a premium resort. Participating hotels can be found in nearly 90 hotels across North America and the Caribbean including Canada, Mexico and South America.
Further information: https://world.hyatt.com/content/gp/en/offers/work-from-hyatt.html
Trails and Visitor Centre
Dwellingup in Western Australia’s Peel region is home to a purpose-built centre for a range of mountain bike, walking, paddling, four-wheel-drive and horse-riding trail activities. The project also aims to deliver around 60-kilometres of dedicated single-track mountain bike trails in and around the town connected to the Munda Biddi Trail.
Further information: https://parks.dpaw.wa.gov.au/connect/read/new-adventure-trails
Hotel Footprinting Tool
The International Tourism Partnership and Greenview have launched the Hotel Footprinting Tool which allows anyone easy access to the carbon and energy footprint of hotels worldwide. The free online tool also allows users to estimate the carbon footprint of a hotel stay and meeting anywhere in the world. The data is compliant with the Hotel Carbon Measurement Initiative, a universally recognised methodology for measuring and recording carbon outputs in hotels which was developed by the International Tourism Partnership, the World Travel and Tourism Council and a working group of global hotel companies.
Further information: https://www.hotelfootprints.org/footprinting
Birubi Beach Tourism Interchange
The NSW Government has announced $5.4 million from the Growing Local Economies Fund to build an information centre and tourism interchange at Anna Bay in Port Stephens. The Birubi Point Aboriginal Place Tourism interchange will become the gateway for visitors to enjoy the Worimi Conservation Lands. The proposed design includes 50 car spaces, 10 coach parks and a drop-off zone that can accommodate two coaches. The plans have been designed by CHROFI and McGregor Coxall.
Further information: http://www.chrofi.com/project/birubi-point-tourism-and-information-centre
Vacation Deprivation Study
Expedia’s annual Vacation Deprivation report reveals that travel in the ‘new normal’ will require a significant mental and emotional shift with 2021 the year in which Australians are planning to take more time off and spend more on holidays. The study also shows booking behaviours are influencing decision-making with refundable travel options becoming a pre-requisite for many travellers. First commissioned in 2000, the annual study is conducted online among 9,200 respondents across North and South America, Europe and Asia-Pacific including Australia and New Zealand.
Further information: https://viewfinder.expedia.com/vacation-deprivation/
The Future of Travel & Tourism
A report published by the World Travel and Tourism Council in collaboration with Oliver Wyman explores the impact and implications of COVID-19 on the travel and tourism sector to provide recommendations that will support the sector now and build its resilience into the future. To Recovery & Beyond: The Future of Travel & Tourism in the Wake of COVID-19 includes a data-driven examination of four interlinked trends – Demand Evolution, Health and Hygiene, Innovation and Digitisation, as well as Sustainability.
Further information: https://wttc.org/Research/To-Recovery-Beyond
Corporate Traveller Report
A report released by SAP Concur has found that corporate travellers expect long term changes in a post COVID-19 business environment including the widespread use of hand sanitisers, enforced social distancing and alternative touchless greetings for handshakes. The report also revealed that business travellers would like training on best practices including how to protect their health and safety during travel, how to maintain healthy habits and travelling more sustainably. The report surveyed 4850 business travellers in 23 markets.
Education & Training
Tourism Startup Competition
The United Nations World Tourism Organisation’s Global Startup Competition was launched to identify innovators whose ideas can advance tourism’s contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals. The competition attracted more than 10,000 participants with 60 finalists shortlisted from 28 countries. Finalists were chosen by a special jury made up of experts drawn from international banks, airlines, tourism destinations and technology platforms.
Conferences & Events
The Gondwana Festival will be held during March 2021 in the Scenic Rim of South Eastern Queensland. The event will connect a series of adventures and experience hubs including Beechmont, Binna Burra, O’Reilly’s Plateau, Lost World Valley, Christmas Creek, Round Mountain, Tamrookum, Wild Mountains and Mount Barney.
Further information: https://www.gondwanafestival.com.au/
Spirit of Trails Conference
The Forum Advocating Cultural and Eco-Tourism Spirit of Trails Conference will be held in Collie from 14-16 March 2021. The conference is a chance to learn more from tourism and trails experts who will share their knowledge about bringing together all the elements that make for a great trails tourism experience for current and emerging businesses.
Further information: https://www.facet.asn.au/conference.aspx#.YC4QQ2gzZAp
Wine Australia will launch a virtual showcase featuring Australian wineries from across 65 regions on 31 March 2021. The Australian Wine Connect platform will offer a program of events and experiences to allow winemakers and distributers engage with a global audience.
Further information: https://www.wineaustralia.com/australian-wine-connect/exhibit