Edition 165 · February 2022
Tony Charters and Associates
Circulated to 10,000 professionals worldwide
Game of Thrones Tour
The official Game of Thrones Studio Tour created by Warner Bros Themed Entertainment and Linen Mill Studios has opened to the public. Located at the series’ original filming location in Banbridge, Northern Ireland, the Game of Thrones Studio Tour will transport fans into the heart of Westeros to see imagery, sets, original props and costumes and more behind-the-scenes elements from the hit HBO series.
Further information: https://www.gameofthronesstudiotour.com/
Safety & Security
Digital Passenger Declaration
Australia has launched a Digital Passenger Declaration which has replaced the Australia Travel Declaration. Every passenger entering Australia by air should complete the new declaration 72 hours before travel as it collects contact details, flight details, quarantine requirements and health status. This information helps the Australian Government manage contact tracing and quarantine planning to ensure the health and safety of the community. The service is operated by SITA on behalf of the Australian Government.
Further information: https://atd.homeaffairs.gov.au/
Digital Health Passport
App in the Air has launched a digital health passport to make travel more seamless while supporting access to COVID-19 vaccinations worldwide. Every time a user uploads their proof of vaccination, the company will donate an additional vaccine to a vulnerable country via a public–private global health partnership with the goal of increasing access to immunisation in poor countries. The app also tracks flight itineraries, hotel reservations and travel requirements per destination.
Further information: https://www.appintheair.mobi/
Funding & Grants
Aviation Attraction Package
The Queensland Government has announced a $100 million commitment towards an aviation attraction package. This will be matched dollar for dollar by the State’s four international airports including Brisbane, Cairns, the Sunshine and Gold Coast Airports. The $200 million aviation attraction package will ensure that Queensland can compete on the global tourism stage by securing more flights and additional routes to increase aviation capacity over the next few years.
Further information: https://statements.qld.gov.au/statements/94437
The Victorian Government has launched a $200 million package to kick-start the industry across the state. The package includes a new $100 million voucher scheme providing rebates to Victorians for entertainment, dining and travel. Another $10 million round of Melbourne Money and $30 million for rebates on food and wine experiences in regional areas beyond Melbourne. Another $30 million in rebates for tickets to the theatre, live music, cinemas, museums, galleries, conferences, exhibitions and other events across Victoria. Also $30 million for a Victorian Travel Voucher Scheme to encourage people to holiday at home and spend on accommodation, attractions and tours.
Further information: https://www.vic.gov.au/business-stimulus-package
New domestic low-cost carrier Bonza has announced plans to be based on the Sunshine Coast. The airline will fly 25 routes to 16 locations around Australia connecting ‘point to point’ leisure routes not currently serviced by other airlines from the middle of this year. Sunshine Coast Airport will be the head office location and first airport base for its fleet of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. Bonza will fly to Albury, Avalon, Bundaberg, Cairns, Coffs Harbour, Gladstone, Mackay, Melbourne, Mildura, Newcastle, Port Macquarie, Rockhampton, Sunshine Coast, Toowoomba, Townsville and the Whitsunday Coast subject to regulatory approval.
Further information: https://www.flybonza.com/
Western Sydney International Airport
Construction of the Western Sydney International (Nancy-Bird Walton) Airport passenger terminal has begun. The terminal plaza will have a station on the Sydney Metro–Western Sydney Airport line and will be connected to the motorway network via the new toll-free M12 Motorway. Sustainability is also a key consideration with the terminal roof generating solar electricity and harvesting rainwater. The terminal is scheduled to open to international, domestic and air cargo services in late 2026.
Electric Air Taxi
Eve Urban Air Mobility Solutions and Sydney Seaplanes have announced a partnership for new electric air taxi operations at the Rose Bay aviation terminal in Sydney Harbour. Sydney Seaplanes has placed an order for 50 of Eve’s electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft (eVTOL), with deliveries expected to commence from 2026. The new partnership helps progress towards 100% of greater Sydney’s local tourism and commuter flights coming from zero emission electric aviation.
Bluey House Brisbane
The family home from iconic Australian kids’ show Bluey has been being listed on Airbnb in Brisbane, Queensland. The new campaign between Airbnb and BBCStudio is provided the chance for one lucky family the opportunity to live like the Heelers for the ultimate fan weekend. Created by Joe Brumm and made entirely in Brisbane Australia, Bluey is produced by the multi-Emmy award-winning Ludo Studio for ABC KIDS.
Further information: http://www.airbnb.com/bluey
Hotel on Wheels
Moliving is a nomadic hospitality company that equips boutique hotels with fully furnished environmentally friendly modular suites (hotel rooms) on wheels. The company has partnered with modular fabricator SG Blocks, using recycled and eco-friendly materials to make the structure. The rooms are also made to be environmentally friendly, with rooftop solar panels that provide power and minimise the carbon footprint. The first project is Hurley House in the Hudson Valley region of upstate New York. Future expansion plans include locations in California, Colorado and Nevada.
Further information: https://www.moliving.com/
Infrastructure & Investment
Rebuilding Southern Ocean Lodge
Work has begun on rebuilding and reinvigorating the new $50 million Southern Ocean Lodge on Kangaroo Island. The original property was destroyed by the bushfires in January 2020 and the Baillie Lodges team is hoping SOL 2.0 will be ready for visitors in 2023.
Further information: https://southernoceanlodge.com.au/lodge-update/
Don't Go Small. Go Australia.
Tourism Australia has launched a new international campaign to encourage travellers to book their next big holiday to Australia now that international borders are re-opening to all fully vaccinated tourists and other visitors. The $40 million campaign ‘Don’t Go Small. Go Australia’ highlights the amazing icons Australia is known and loved for around the world, as well as some of the less known but equally spectacular experiences on offer. It will run across TV, print, digital and social channels in key markets and feature some of Australia’s most iconic destinations and experiences. It will run in the U.K., U.S.A., Germany, France, Italy, and Canada.
Lost Sierra Route
The Connected Communities Project is a partnership between the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship, the U.S. Forest Service and community to create a network of multiuse trails that will connect 15 northern California mountain towns to Reno, Nevada. The end goal is to build the proposed Lost Sierra Route by 2030 paying homage to the region and the historic Gold Rush-era mail delivery route. The first section of the trail is expected to open in 2023.
Further information: https://sierratrails.org/connected-communities/
Where Next for Sustainable Travel?
Sustainable Travel International is creating a new documentary series about the people and organisations that are transforming travel. The `Sustainable Travel: Where Next’ program will investigate how the tourism industry is coming together to rebuild a more sustainable future and protect the destinations and communities at the heart of travel. Produced by Zinc Media Group in partnership with Sublime Magazine it will be released on World Tourism Day (21 September 2022) as part of a global marketing campaign aimed at travel companies, developers, investors, destination managers and travellers.
An audit of improvements to the accessibility of Queensland’s popular visitor experiences has been launched to help maximise opportunities for tourism operators now and leading into the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The independent appraisal by Get Skilled Access and Travability will review tourist infrastructure accessibility and tourism business capability in six regions of Queensland for people with a disability.
Further information: https://statements.qld.gov.au/statements/93769
Sea Way Trail
The Keppel Turtle Fund has unveiled a new educational attraction which will support environmental and ecological aspects of the Southern Great Barrier Reef. Stage One of the Great Keppel Island Sea Way Trail features 15 sculptured information panels which highlight marine facts, values, and conservation. The trail was developed in conjunction with community representatives, a local marine biologist and tourism operators. The Keppel Turtle Fund Inc. is a charity focused on education, appreciation, protection, and rehabilitation of the natural marine environment.
Contiki, the world leaders in youth social travel, have launched an evolution of its brand identity which focuses on the fun, social experiences and sustainability that the brand has been associated with for 60 years. To meet the new needs of Gen-Z and Millennial travellers, Contiki is also becoming entirely carbon neutral. To celebrate Contiki have released two new brand videos.
Further information: https://www.contiki.com/au/en/resources/brand-refresh-2022
Policy & Planning
World Economic Situation and Prospects
The latest World Economic Situation and Prospects report by the United Nations draws upon data and analysis from the World Tourism Organisation to assess the cost and importance of restarting tourism in 2022. It shows how many destinations are developing domestic tourism to help local economies in rural and depressed areas to boost job creation and protect natural resources and cultural heritage, while at the same time empowering women, youth and indigenous peoples.
Kukulu Ola Program
The Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority is providing nearly $1.5 million to 30 community-based programs in the Aloha State through its Kukula Ola program. The Kukulu Ola program is a commitment toward Malama Kuu Home (caring for my beloved home) to strengthen understanding and appreciation of Hawaiian culture. It provides funding to communities that enhance, strengthen and perpetuate the Hawaiian culture through genuine experiences for residents and visitors alike.
Further information: https://www.hawaiitourismauthority.org/what-we-do/hta-programs/hawaiian-culture/
Destination Stewardship Yearbook
Sharing lessons learned is the purpose of the Destination Stewardship Annual Yearbook. Produced by the Destination Stewardship Centre and the Global Sustainable Tourism Council, the Yearbook features destinations from around the globe with many good stories to tell about what has worked in their journey toward sustainability.
Free Trade Agreement
The Australia-United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement was signed in December 2021 to help exporters diversify and grow their market share, as well as make it easier to attract investment in Australia. Within two years, eligibility to participate in the U.K.’s Working Holiday Maker Program or Youth Mobility Scheme will also be raised from 30 to 35 years of age and stays extended to up to three years.
Training & Education
Tourism Whitsundays has put together a new Edutourism Prospectus to showcase the study tour experiences available in The Whitsundays region. This important and growing sector in tourism combines learning with fun. Educational trips booked in The Whitsundays may also be eligible for the Great Barrier Reef Education Experience Program subsidy for primary and secondary school students in Queensland.
Further information: https://www.tourismwhitsundays.com.au/trade-centre/edutourism/
Eight Indigenous graduates are now qualified tour guides after completing a training program supported by Morris Family Foundation. The graduates have been equipped with diving certification, boat licenses and essential cultural knowledge to assist them in their new roles as Indigenous Guides for the Museum of Underwater Art off the coast of Townsville. The eight-week program provided trainees with education on marine science, reef health, management of marine ecosystems and the connection to the Manbarra Sea Country.
Further information: https://www.morrisgroup.com.au/newspost/indigenous-guides-graduate/
Research & Insights
Big Tourism Data
A new joint publication by Asian Development Bank and World Tourism Organisation explores how big data and digitalisation can support sustainable tourism development and help reshape the sector as it emerges from the pandemic. The report examines trends, challenges, opportunities and case studies. It highlights the need for investment in big data systems, partnerships with private and public providers, the adoption of proven measurement systems for sustainable tourism and regional policy cooperation.
Travel Trends Report
Expedia has released its 2022 Travel Trends Report revealing that travellers are shaking up the status quo with new priorities in pursuit of transformative and meaningful travel experiences. Top findings from the report which leverages Expedia data revealed a new ‘no-regrets’ style of travel called the GOAT (Greatest of All Trips) mindset. The study was conducted by Northstar Research Partners and polled 12,000 travellers across 12 countries including North and South America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.
World Tourism Barometer
The latest United Nations World Tourism Organisation Barometer indicates that widespread vaccination roll-out combined with easing of travel restrictions and clearer information on travel protocols are the main factors for the effective recovery of international tourism. While international tourism bounces back, domestic tourism or travelling close to home continues to drive recovery, as well as open-air activities, nature-based products and rural tourism are major travel trends that will continue shaping tourism in 2022.
Further information: https://www.unwto.org/unwto-world-tourism-barometer-data
Tourism and Hotel Market Outlook
The latest edition of the Deloitte Access Economics’ Tourism and Hotel Market Outlook has been released. It uses the forecasting, modelling and analytical expertise of Deloitte and draws on real estate industry experience and insights, as well as a range of other sources including hotel performance and pipeline data collected by STR Global Limited.
The 2022 Amadeus Travel Trends research points to active ecotourism, friendcations and the digital transformation of business travel as things to watch as travel comes back on the agenda. The survey identified six new developments that are shaping the future of the travel market including embracing the trip of a lifetime and bucket-list destinations, as well as high-tech travel options such as supersonic flight and hyperloop technology. It also identified Wanderlust Streaming as a new trend with travellers looking to visit places based on their viewing habits.
Innovation & Awards
Ocean Innovation Prize
The Blue Climate Initiative has announced the winners of the U.S. $1 million Ocean Innovation Prize at the One Ocean Summit in France. A panel of seven judges selected three winners from over 236 applications received from over 60 countries. Editor of Tourforce, Tony Charters AM, was one of the expert evaluators assessing and shortlisting the applications. The prize will be hosted by the Blue Climate Initiative, in partnership with the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Ocean Alliance, is designed to accelerate ocean-based solutions to climate change. In addition to the prize money, winners will be supported with publicity, experts, investors and mentoring.
Further information: https://www.blueclimateinitiative.org/ocean-innovation-prize
Conferences & Events
Green Revolution Summit
The Tourism and Transport Forums Green Revolution Summit is being held in Surfers Paradise, Gold Coast on 10 March 2022. The event aims to bring together public and private sector experts, industry leaders and innovators to discuss the pathway to sustainable tourism, aviation and public transport sectors.
Further information: https://ttf.org.au/conference/greenrevolution2022/
Savannah Guides Field School
The next Savannah Guides Field School will be held at Cobbold Gorge and Undara Experience in Queensland from 16-20 March 2022. Workshops and resources will assist participants to maximise their own guest experiences under the theme of Transformational Experiences.
Further information: https://savannah-guides.com.au/tour-guide-training/savannah-guides-field-schools/
Scenic Rim Adventure Festival
The Scenic Rim Adventure Festival will be held at Mt Barney Lodge from 29 April – 2 May 2022. The festival will include guided walks, live music, survival skill workshops, adventure film festival and talks from internationally renowned guest speakers.
Further information: https://www.mtbarneylodge.com.au/scenic-rim-adventure-festival