Edition 160 · September 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.
Prancing Pony Conservation
Monarto Safari Park are celebrating their role in the conservation of the Przewalski’s Horse, a pure-bred horse threatened by human intervention and cross breeding. Monarto Safari Park has partnered with Prancing Pony Brewery to raise funds for their continued conservation with $10 donated from every sold carton of ‘Rarely Tame’ lager.
Further information: https://www.monartosafari.com.au/p-horse/
Safety & Security
Intrepid Travel, via The Intrepid Foundation, has launched a fundraising and advocacy campaign supporting UNICEF’s Vaccinaid. Donations will go towards delivering COVID-19 vaccines, tests and treatment to some of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged countries around the world. At the same time, Intrepid Travel teams around the world are working to provide easier access to vaccines in remote communities and educating staff to help resolve vaccine hesitancy.
Further information: https://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/t/vaccine-equity
Global Guidelines Security Travel Facilitation
The latest World Travel and Tourism Councils latest report on the Safe & Seamless Traveller Journey provides a set of recommendations and best practices encompassing both air and non-air traveller touchpoints. Developed in partnership with Oliver Wyman and Pangiam, it aims to assist in the establishment of globally interoperable, technology agnostic, biometric-enabled solutions for end-to-end travel from booking to trip completion.
Further information: https://wttc.org/Initiatives/Security-Travel-Facilitation
Funding & Grants
Export Market Development Grants
Applications are open for the reformed Export Market Development Grants which encourage small to medium enterprises to market and promote their goods and services globally. The program has been improved by a streamlined application process and a shift to a forward-looking grant program which will ensure exporters know how much funding they will receive into the future. Applications close 30 November 2021.
Travel Agent Support Fund
Businesses can now apply for funding through the Western Australian Tourism and Travel Agent Support Fund 2021. The $16.8 million program will provide one-off payments of up to $10,000 to eligible tourism businesses including travel agents, accommodation providers, tours, transport operators, tourism attractions or experiences impacted by the lockdowns and border restrictions across Australia.
Business Support Package
The Tasmanian and Australian Governments are providing an extra funding for Tasmanian businesses with a total of $70 million now available for operators impacted by border closures. The Business Support Package will provide grants of up to $50,000 to eligible businesses across two funding rounds.
International Aviation Support Program
The Australian Government has committed a further $183.65 million to help maintain international aviation capability in readiness for international borders reopening. The package includes funding to extend the International Aviation Support program and aviation security screening cost rebates for Australia’s major international airports.
Recovery & Resilience
The Sigmund Project
The Sigmund Project is a digital not-for-profit platform dedicated to advancing travel through innovation and collaboration. It aims to share ideas and foster interconnectivity to find new solutions to challenges facing the travel industry. It is open to anyone including small entrepreneurs, multinational companies, accommodation suppliers, transport providers, universities and start-ups. It is also looking to offer an Investment Grant Program in 2022 for partnerships formed as a result of networking through the platform.
Further information: https://www.sgmnd.org/
United Airlines will introduce more than 500 new narrow-body aircraft to its fleet including Boeing and Airbus aircraft. This is the largest combined aircraft order and is part of the airlines ‘United Next’ plan to transform the customer experience, increase the total number of available seats per domestic departure and significantly lower carbon emissions per seat. The carrier has plans to upgrade 100% of its mainline, narrow-body fleet to these standards by 2025.
Easyjet is introducing a new uniform for cabin crew and pilots made from recycled plastic bottles. Manufactured by Northern-Ireland based Tailored Image, the uniforms are made from material containing around 45 recycled plastic bottles and use a 75% lower carbon footprint than traditional polyester. The move is part of the airlines commitment to mitigate waste and search for innovative change beyond carbon reduction including replacing plastic in all clothing-related packaging in favour of recyclable and biodegradable materials.
Further information: https://www.easyjet.com/en/sustainability/recycled-uniforms
The CrocArena at Wildlife Habitat in Port Douglas has been opened with funding from the State and Federal Governments. The purpose-built CrocArena includes a grandstand allowing elevated viewing of the enclosure, main presentation platform and underwater viewing area. This opportunity to swim with saltwater crocodiles is the only one of its kind in Queensland and allows park visitors to swim eye-to-teeth with Big Al, Digger and Ton from Australia Zoo.
Further information: https://www.wildlifehabitat.com.au/crocarena/
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary in Brisbane is preparing for a $1.4 million expansion as part of funding from the Queensland Government. The ‘Wild Walk’ project will introduce new wildlife species, a boardwalk, immersive exhibits to assist with breeding and conservation programs, as well as unique night tours to experience the diverse wildlife habitats found within the Brisbane region.
Further information: https://statements.qld.gov.au/statements/93063
Trade & Distribution
Aussie Specialist Program
Tourism Australia has relaunched the award-winning Aussie Specialist Program in conjunction with State and Territory tourism bodies. The 32-year-old online platform is available in nine languages and is designed to provide international travel sellers with the knowledge and skills to promote and sell Australia. It has been revamped to include greater personalisation, faster qualifying times and shorter more interactive training modules. Currently there are more than 26,000 qualified Aussie Specialists worldwide.
Unyoked is an Australian start-up developing stylish luxurious cabins that provide a safe option for travellers looking to get away from the city. Launched in 2019, each of the 14 square metre wooden cabins is less than a two-hour drive away from a major city of Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra or Brisbane in secluded and accessible rural locations. The cabins are also environmentally friendly with solar panels lining the roof.
Further information: https://www.unyoked.co/
The Tasman Hotel
Marriott International has announced the Australian debut of The Luxury Collection brand with the opening of The Tasman in Hobart. The 152-room hotel will accentuate the character of Hobart by connecting the city’s pioneering past, contemporary culture and scenery. The Luxury Collection brand is a global collection of 110 unique hotels and resorts in more than 30 countries and territories.
Agoda has been working with Booking.com and the Global Sustainable Tourism Council to create a sustainable hospitality handbook for its partners. The handbook provides information on setting environmental baselines, reducing plastic consumption, reducing water consumption, reducing energy consumption, using green energy, reducing food waste and becoming certified as a sustainable accommodation.
Further information: https://partnerhub.agoda.com/csr-sustainability/
Sustainable Tourism Pilot Program
Tourism Industry Aotearoa is running a three-month pilot Sustainable Tourism program to support smaller tourism businesses in Wellington which don’t have the tools or resources to track, measure and report on their efforts towards carbon neutrality. The businesses involved range from hotels, restaurants, buses and boats to tours and other visitor experiences.
Education & Training
Placement Partnerships Program
The Federal Government is partnering with the travel sector to connect young job seekers to employment opportunities in tourism and hospitality through the $10 million PaTH Business Placement Partnerships program. Restaurant and Catering Australia and the Accommodation Association of Australia have been chosen to deliver new pathways to jobs in the hospitality and tourism industries until the end of June 2022.
Camping with Custodians
The Camping with Custodians initiative is an Australian-first program that develops high quality campgrounds on Aboriginal lands which are owned and operated by the community. Visitors can stay, meet and mix with Aboriginal people with accommodation fees used by the community to generate income, employment and training opportunities. Tourism Western Australia is inviting Aboriginal groups that may be interested in welcoming travellers to their Country to register their interest in the program.
K’gari World Heritage Area
The World Heritage Area within Great Sandy National Park, which is centred on Fraser Island, has been renamed K’gari – the original Butchulla people’s name for the island. The name change was formally adopted at the recent 44th session of the World Heritage Committee. Other Queensland national parks have been renamed in consultation with Traditional Owners and the community including Naree Budjong Djara National Park on Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island) and Gheebulum Kunungai National Park Mulgumpin (Moreton Island).
Further information: https://statements.qld.gov.au/statements/93269
Policy & Planning
Drive Tourism Strategy
Tourism Northern Territory has developed a dedicated Drive Tourism Strategy to identify key product and marketing opportunities to improve length and quality of visitor stay. The strategy was developed after comprehensive industry and government consultation with assistance provided by the Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics to ensure tourism benefits are considered in relation to the delivery of new road infrastructure.
Green Travel and Tourism
A new report from the UNWTO developed in partnership with the G20 Tourism Working Group has been identified as a key resource for advancing progress in the policy area of ‘Green Transformation’ of the world’s leading economies. The Transition to a Green Travel and Tourism Economy presents the main lines of action and initiatives of tourism businesses and destinations leading the way in achieving greater sustainability while also outlining steps that can help tourism recover from the worst crisis in its history safely and responsibly.
Customer Research Report
The New Zealand Department of Conservation’s (Te Papa Atawhai) new customer research report provides a snapshot of New Zealanders’ experiences in the outdoors and their interaction with biodiversity and conservation. The findings provide guidance on how the Department of Conservation might support New Zealanders to get more involved in caring for species and places. The report also looks at domestic attitudes towards the outdoors and access.
Young Tourism Voices
A report released by Young Tourism Network and Regeneration Projects has highlighted that young people felt they experienced significantly worse outcomes through 2020 compared to others in the tourism, hospitality and events industry. The report was developed following engagement via a survey and focus group conversations with 190 respondents, with an average age of 28 years. The report will assist the Reimagining the Visitor Economy process currently being facilitated by the Australian Investment and Trade Commission.
Rebuilding Hospitality Report
New research from Amadeus reveals trends that have defined the hospitality industry worldwide during the pandemic and the best practice examples on how hoteliers can plan for recovery. The report ‘Rebuilding Hospitality: Trends in Demand, Data and Technology That are Driving Recovery’ combines hotelier insights with the latest data from Amadeus’ Demand360 business intelligence solution. The survey was conducted anonymously with 688 hoteliers in March and April 2021.
Further information: https://amadeus.com/en/insights/press-release/rebuilding-hospitality-research-report
Sustainable Travel Trends Survey
According to Agoda’s Sustainable Travel Trends Survey 2021, the top five measures needed to make travel more sustainable are easy identification of eco-friendly travel options, limited use of single-use plastics, financial incentives for energy efficient accommodation providers, establishing more protected areas and removal of single-use bathroom amenities. The survey was carried out online in May 2021 with a sample size of 18,327 adults in 14 markets.
Further information: https://www.agoda.com/press/agoda-sustainable-travel-trends-survey?cid=1844104
Recovery Insights Report
Mastercard has released Recovery Insights: Ready for Takeoff? a view into key travel trends around the world. This report developed by the Mastercard Economics Institute looks at the next wave of travel and its drivers including a shrinking gap between global business and leisure travel, the emergence of 10 travel routes and growth in spending categories relative to travel. It draws on aggregated and anonymised sales activity across the global Mastercard network to better understand the next phase drivers and challenges for travel.
Further information: https://www.mastercardservices.com/en/recovery-insights/ready-takeoff
Conferences & Events
World Youth and Student Travel Conference
The 30th World Youth and Student Travel Conference will be held in Lisbon and online from 13-15 October 2021. This is the annual trade event for the global youth, student and educational travel industry.
Further information: https://www.wystc.org/
Travel Marketing Summit
The Mumbrella Travel Marketing Summit will be held in Sydney on 28 October 2021. The summit brings together marketers across travel brands and agencies to share strategies, insights and case studies.
Further information: https://mumbrella.com.au/travel
Gastronomy Tourism Forum
The World Forum on Gastronomy Tourism will be held in Belgium from 31 October – 2 November 2021. The event will focus on the contribution of gastronomy tourism to social and economic integration including job creation, regional cohesion and sustainable growth.
Further information: https://www.unwto.org/6th-unwto-world-forum-on-gastronomy-tourism