Edition 183 · August 2023
Tony Charters and Associates
Circulated to 10,000 professionals worldwide
Submit Your Stories
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
Transitioning to EV’s – sharing the Norwegian journey
The National Public Sector Fleet Managers’ Conference is being held in Melbourne 28-29 November. The conference brings together public sector fleet managers, vehicle manufacturers and specialist suppliers to examine issues critical to Australia’s transition to Net Zero.
Case studies from overseas are an important contributor to the program and the Norwegian Electric Vehicle Association will provide a keynote address speaking to their experiences, policy initiatives and the lived experience of their 120,000 members who drive EVs in Norway.
Helene Busengdal, Project Co-ordinator Analysis and Advisory Services in the Norwegian EV Association will speak at the Conference. Helene has been the Norwegian EV Associations representative in several national and international research and policy projects, part of the Program Committee for the annual international conference the Nordic EV Summit.
For further information on registration and exhibiting visit: https://www.npsfmc.com/
A new museum has opened in Waterford, Ireland with a focus on death. The Irish Wake Museum explores the customs, traditions and superstitions associated with death from the earliest times to the 20th century. Ireland’s unique traditions marking death have their roots in ancient Samhain rituals including the Samhain festival which marked the Celtic New Year or the origin of modern-day Halloween.
Further information: https://www.waterfordtreasures.com/museum/irish-wake-museum/
Grants & Funding
Experience Nature Tourism Fund
The South Australian Tourism Commission’s Experience Nature Tourism Fund is open for private sector businesses, not-for-profit organisations, and community associations across the state. The $2 million fund aims to support investment in new and improved nature-based tourism products and experiences in or near a national park, reserve, wilderness protection area or marine park. Applications close 14 September 2023.
Accessible Tourism Experience Grants
Queensland tourism businesses can apply for the Boosting Accessible Tourism Experiences grants to support the development and/or enhancement of tourism products and smaller scale infrastructure to make it more accessible. The funding is part of a $12 million investment in initiatives to raise awareness about Queensland accessible tourism experiences under the Year of Accessible Tourism. Applications close 31 August or until funding is exhausted.
Further information: https://www.dtis.qld.gov.au/tourism/funds
Wine Tourism and Cellar Door Grants
Applications for round five of the Wine Tourism and Cellar Door Grant are now open. The funding aims to support wine or cider producers who add value by encouraging visitors to wine regions. Wine producers who meet the eligibility criteria will be able to access an annual grant of up to $100,000 for their eligible domestic cellar door sales. Total funding under the grant program will be capped at $10 million each financial year. Applications close on 30 September 2023.
Further information: https://www.wineaustralia.com/wine-tourism-and-cellar-door-grants
Airline Clothes Rental
Japan Airlines has launched an innovative clothing rental scheme for passengers as a part of its efforts to make air travel more sustainable. The ‘Any Wear, Anywhere’ initiative allows travellers to hire clothes for the duration of their trip and effectively travel lighter, helping to reduce carbon emissions. Passengers simply head to the on-line store, select the clothing set that best suits them and enter their size and flight details. The clothing can then be picked up upon arrival in Japan from their accommodation. The service is being trialled until August 2024 with the potential to be rolled out to other carriers such as British Airways and American Airlines.
Further information: https://press.jal.co.jp/en/release/202307/007481.html
Swedish airport operator Swedavia is working in line with the national roadmap for fossil-free aviation in operations at all 10 airports. The goal is for the country’s domestic air travel to be fossil-free by 2030 and all Swedish air travel to be fossil-free by 2045. To date Göteborg Landvetter and Stockholm Arlanda have been ranked among the world’s most sustainable airports.
Further information: https://www.swedavia.com/the-change-is-already-underway/
Cruise company Ponant has revealed plans for a transoceanic ship that aims to have zero greenhouse gas emissions when sailing. The next generation of eco-designed ships will feature a sail power system and propulsion energy using the force of the wind, and photovoltaic panels to make use of solar power. The 181-metre-long ship will have 100 staterooms and is planned to be sailing by 2030.
Further information: https://au.ponant.com/ponant-unveils-its-iconic-newbuild-ship
Photo credit: Stirling Design International
Photo: 3D image of Swap2Zero project with Ayro Oceanwings® technology.
Set at the entrance to Stockholm Arlanda Airport is a hostel in a converted Boeing 747 airliner which has rooms, bunk beds and single-sex dorms with free Wi-Fi, flat-screens, and shared bathrooms. The original features and design elements of the aircraft such as passenger seat windows have been retained even with modern amenities such as a cafe/bar, parking, and a free airport shuttle.
Further information: https://www.jumbostay.com/
A new one-of-a-kind urban wellness retreat has officially opened at B Division at the HM Prison Pentridge in Melbourne. The Interlude is the world’s first urban wellness retreat set in the billion-dollar converted precinct. Each of the 19 suites has vaulted ceilings and stone walls with contemporary finishes and fittings you would expect to see in a modern hotel. The centrepiece of hotel is a subterranean swimming pool. It is owned by Shayher Group and operated by TFE Hotels.
Further information: https://theinterlude.com.au/
First Nations Tourism Mentoring Program
The First Nations Tourism Mentoring Program is a free mentoring program for tourism businesses across Australia. It designed to match tourism operations with skilled and experienced mentors to grow their business goals. Mentees will also have access to expert advice, tailored learning, and culturally respectful industry specialists. It is open to businesses that are at least 50% First Nations-owned and have products or services targeting domestic and/or international visitors.
Further information: https://www.fntmp.com.au/s/
Flash Speed Force
Warner Bros. Movie World on the Gold Coast in Queensland is launching The Flash: Speed Force in April 2024. The 67-metre-long half-pipe roller coaster is themed to the DC Comics superhero the Flash. The ride originally opened as Surfrider at the nearby Wet’n’Wild Gold Coast, where it operated until 2020.
Further information: https://movieworld.com.au/attractions/the-flash-speed-force
The Slovenian and Croatian Tourist Boards have developed a joint promotional campaign targeting U.S. travellers to discover the natural beauty of Slovenia and Croatia. Supported by the European Travel Commission the ‘Naturally Yours – taste, feel, Love!’ campaign will feature digital ads and promotional videos across various media and social platforms including Conde Nast Traveler, Wanderlust and YouTube.
Travel Oregon Campaign
Travel Oregon has launched a new advertising campaign platform that promotes the idea that the best way to experience Oregon is with an Oregonian. The ‘Travel Oregon with Travel Oregon’ campaign will drive more personal connections between visitors and the state’s people, cultures, and less-travelled destinations. It will focus on broad-reaching channels including television placements, outdoor advertisements, video and custom content across media partners and social platforms.
Further information: https://traveloregon.com/
Image: Riding the Crooked River Scenic Bikeway
Delta Flight Products has partnered with U.K.-based consortium Air4All on a first-of-its kind airplane seat that allows customers who use a powered wheelchair to remain in their own wheelchairs for the entire journey. The seat converts a standard passenger seat and enables airlines to retain the design of their cabin. Passengers will also have access to headrest and centre console tray tables with an adjustable cocktail table to serve passengers with wheelchairs. The seat is now being sent for final design and validation, with testing and certification programs to install the seat to begin once certified.
Further information: https://deltatechops.com/flight-products/
Accessible Visitor Guide
Destination Gold Coast as part of their Domestic Roadshow have launched a new Accessible Visitor Guide in collaboration with The Access Agency and Inclusive Tourism Australia. The 158-page guide is the first of its kind and provides accessible experiences, accommodation, and attractions, as well as transport options across the region.
Further information: https://www.destinationgoldcoast.com/plan/travel-information/accessibility
Digital & Technology
New AI Trip Planner
The world’s leading digital travel platform has launched a new AI Trip Planner for the U.S. traveller. Built upon the Booking.com existing machine learning models, the AI Trip Planner is also powered by large language model technology from OpenAI’s ChatGPT API to create a new conversational experience for people to start their trip planning process. The platform will also provide travellers with a visual list of destinations and properties including pricing information.
Arkaroola International Dark Sky Sanctuary
Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary in the northern Flinders Ranges of South Australia has been designated as an International Dark Sky Sanctuary by DarkSky International. Comprising over 63,000 hectares of conservation land, the recognition will help Arkaroola and its not-for-profit entity the Arkaroola Education and Research Foundation to further encourage education, conservation, and research activities. It now joins more than 200 Places that have demonstrated robust support for dark sky advocacy and strive to protect the night from light pollution.
Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy
The New Zealand Government has announced a new investment plan for the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy funding which will support tourism projects that have the potential to be nationally significant or address shared industry challenges. The priority areas for tourism are supporting a transition to a regenerative, resilient tourism model, reducing tourism’s environmental impact, improving the way in which tourism serves communities and local economies, and upholding Māori rights and interests in tourism and supporting Māori to participate in proposed projects.
Interactive Walking Map
A new online tool called ‘Walks Near Me’ has been launched to connect people to locations in New South Wales including parks, beaches, libraries, museums, and high streets. The free state-wide interactive digital map provides opportunities to discover public spaces and create bespoke walking itineraries. The tool is optimised for mobile phone use and offers a range of resources, including sharing the stories of parks and regions, discovering events, and informing people about the amenities and experiences available.
Further information: https://www.nsw.gov.au/visiting-and-exploring-nsw/walks-near-me
Working with Tourism Australia
Tourism Australia has released an updated version of its ‘Working with Tourism Australia’ guide. With the return of international visitors, we continue to adapt and embrace opportunities as they arise to stimulate travel to and through Australia. In doing so, Tourism Australia has updated many of its existing resources and developed some new resources that are available to help your business.
Enjoy Respect Venezia
The City Council of Venice has launched an awareness campaign designed to direct visitors towards the adoption of responsible and respectful behaviour towards the environment, landscape, and inhabitants of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. The objective of #EnjoyRespectVenezia is to raise awareness of how responsible travelling can contribute to sustainable development by encouraging a spread of visitors throughout the year to reduce pressure on natural environments and communities, while maximising the economic benefits.
Further information: https://www.veneziaunica.it/en/content/sustainable-venice
Free to Roam
The Exodus Travels Foundation are working with Kenyan conservation experts Tsavo Trust and the Tofauti Foundation to support the Free to Roam project in Tsavo National Park, a major wilderness area that is home to the country’s largest population of elephants. Its aims to form a peaceful co-existence between local wildlife and members of the surrounding communities who can benefit through improved farming techniques that help them become self-sufficient through sustainable means.
Further information: https://www.exodustravels.com/us/foundation/africa/free-to-roam
Coralpalooza is a global day of collaborative action to help restore key reef sites and build resilience to climate change. It was created by Florida-based Coral Restoration Foundation in honour of World Oceans Day in 12 countries. This year was the biggest event yet as Australia joined the global effort and planted corals at sites in Port Douglas, Cairns, and the Whitsundays. Coralpalooza is an opportunity to establish large research plots of planted corals to help learn what helps on areas where recovery is slow.
Further information: https://www.coralrestoration.org/coralpalooza-2023
Policy & Planning
Tourism and Events Queensland has launched a Blueprint and Five-Point Plan to maximise 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games opportunities. The Queensland Government is providing $125 million-a-year for over the next four years to assist Tourism and Events Queensland grow the domestic visitor economy and fast-track international recovery. The Five-Point Plan was developed in partnership with Queensland’s tourism industry to help reach its goal of a $44 billion-a-year visitor economy, as highlighted by the Towards Tourism 2032 roadmap.
Further information: https://statements.qld.gov.au/statements/98342
Net Zero Roadmaps
The International Air Transport Association has revealed a series of roadmaps for the aviation industry as a step-by-step guide to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050. The five roadmaps address five areas including aircraft technology, energy infrastructure, operations, finance, and policy in an integrated way. They also provide a call to action for industry stakeholders to deliver the tools needed to transform the aviation sector.
Further information: https://www.iata.org/netzero-roadmaps/
Economic Impact Report
The World Travel and Tourism Council have released the Economic Impact Report 2023 which provides a global overview of global trends and analyses the strength of the recovery in Asia-Pacific, Africa, Europe, the Americas, and the Middle East. It highlights the industry’s resilience in overcoming challenges such as inflation, staff shortages, and ongoing COVID-19 restrictions. The reopening of China, along with the anticipated full recovery of Latin and North America, will serve as key drivers for this success.
Further information: https://researchhub.wttc.org/product/economic-impact-report-2023-global-trends
Regenerative Tourism Strategy
The Queenstown Lakes District aims to achieve regenerative tourism and a carbon zero visitor economy by 2030. Travel to a Thriving Future offers opportunities for the region to rethink how it can deliver social, cultural, economic, and environmental benefits through tourism that also provides exceptional visitor experiences. The plan was developed by Destination Queenstown, Lake Wānaka Tourism, and Queenstown Lakes District Council with input from Kāi Tahu (Māori iwi or tribe) and the Department of Conservation.
Further information: https://www.queenstownnz.co.nz/regenerative-tourism-2030/
Visitor Economy Strategy and Action Plan
The Tasmanian Government has launched the 2030 Visitor Economy Strategy that aims to increase the visitor economy’s contribution and positive impact on community, economy, and way of life in Tasmania. The strategy will be implemented through an Action Plan that will be responsive to changing industry needs, market environment and broader economic and community contexts. The Tasmanian Government has also announced an additional funding commitment of $12 million over three years to support key projects aligned to the strategy.
Further information: https://www.tourismtasmania.com.au/industry/2030-visitor-economy-strategy/
Destination Management Handbook
The Destination Management Handbook has been prepared by the World Bank Group to highlight the challenges and opportunities that destination managers face at all stages of tourism development. It is intended to empower practitioners to select tools and implement approaches that suit their circumstances within the broader tourism experience. The handbook has been written to cover different levels of maturity, as well as guide smaller, emerging destinations with resource constraints.
Singapore's Tourism Sustainability Strategy
Singapore’s Tourism Sustainability Strategy is pursuing resource efficiency in order to mitigate the negative environmental impact of tourism and bolster its resilience through public and private sector collaboration. With a focus on developing green spaces, sustainable living and investing in the green economy, Singapore is setting the foundations on its journey to become a sustainable urban destination.
Education & Training
TUI Care Foundation e-Academy
TUI Care Foundation has launched a new e-learning platform that offers high-quality, free-of-charge training for anyone interested in starting or developing their career in tourism or hospitality. The online e-Academy provides learners with the tools to upskill and reskill knowledge to promote employment development in tourism destinations worldwide. TUI’s e-Academy was developed in partnership with Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit.
Further information: https://tui-eacademy.com/
The Global Business Travel Association Foundation Sustainability Program has released a Sustainability Toolkit to guide and empower corporate travel managers in partnering with their colleagues, employees, and suppliers to reduce the climate impact of business travel. The toolkit has 12 modules and was developed with the support of the Global Business Travel Association Sustainability Committee whose objective is to build a greener future by sharing insights and best practices across all verticals of business travel.
Further information: https://hub.gbta.org/sustainability-toolkit
Certification & Accreditation
Ecostars is a hotel-specific sustainability certification that awards eco-stars based on a hotel’s environmental impact per stay. Ecostars is recognised by international organisations such as the World Tourism Organisation and Global Sustainable Tourism Council. The certification process is entirely digital and relevant for both small independent hotels or entire chains such as Marriott, Mandarin, Hilton, and Accor. More than 1,500+ hotels have been certified in multiple countries making Ecostars one of the largest sustainability seals in the world.
Further information: https://en.ecostars.org/
Sustainable Experiences in Adventure Travel
A new report, Creating Sustainable Experiences in Adventure Travel, focuses on cultivating the environmental, social, and economic aspects of sustainability in adventure travel experiences. The aim of the report is to develop a framework for hosting sustainable experiences in the adventure travel industry. It draws from survey results and leaders in sustainable travel experiences to create initial guidelines for sustainable travel experiences across the adventure travel community.
State of Climate Action
The Global Business Travel Association Foundation has launched a new global study which aims to measure the adoption of best practices for reducing emissions across the entire business travel community. The State of Climate Action in Business Travel: Global Industry Barometer will provide statistics on the progress made by various organisations in different regions toward their climate goals. It is based on responses from 863 business travel professionals across North America, Europe, Latin America, and Asia Pacific.
Camping And Outdoor Hospitality Report
New data from Kampgrounds of America provides an in-depth look at key trends shaping outdoor hospitality and the larger camping industry. The 2023 North American Camping and Outdoor Hospitality Report examines how the market is evolving as travellers re-establish pre-pandemic travel habits and adapt their plans amid economic uncertainty. The survey also found that new experiences is driving camping participation and that outdoor travel offers physical and mental health benefits, as well as the opportunity to connect with family and friends. Results are based on 4,100 surveys completed among a random sample of U.S. and Canadian households.
State of Student and Youth Travel
StudentUniverse has released a report that focuses on the attitudes and travel behaviours of so-called Gen-Z. The State of Student and Youth Travel 2023 which surveyed students in the U.S.A., Canada, U.K., and Australia found that while some youth travel is still driven by a desire to party, this is now more of a niche segment, with an increased focus on cultural experiences and activities. The report also provides predictions for the next decade including the growing role of artificial intelligence, Africa emerging as a key outbound source market and that youth leisure travel will become more purpose driven.
Further information: https://www.studentuniverse.com/state-of-student-travel-2023
Conferences & Events
Visitor Information Services Summit
The Victoria Tourism Industry Council Visitor Information Services Summit program will be held in Wangaratta, Victoria from 6-8 September 2023. The summit program will see speakers share insights, experience and case studies that explore the ever-changing visitor services environment in their business and region.
Further information: https://www.vtic.com.au/visitor-information-services-summit/program/
Global Tourism Summit
The 23rd World Travel and Tourism Council Global Summit will take place in Kigali, Rwanda from 1-3 November 2023. The event will see industry leaders gather with key government representatives to continue aligning efforts to support the sector’s recovery and move beyond to a safer, more resilient, inclusive, and sustainable future.
Further information: https://wttc.org/global-summit-2023-rwanda
The DestinationQ Forum will be held in Cairns on 23 November 2023. This is the Queensland tourism industry’s premier tourism conference and is delivered by the Queensland Government through the Department of Tourism, Innovation and Sport and Tourism and Events Queensland, partnering with the industry via the Queensland Tourism Industry Council.
Further information: https://www.destq.com.au/destinationq-events