The Australian Tourism Industry Council (ATIC) has released a trifecta of demands for the Federal Government to speed up the recovery of the nation’s tourism industry post-JobKeeper.
The Council is asking for more funding to discount domestic air travel, targeted support for affected tourism businesses and acceleration of the vaccine rollout.
“The Morrison Government must invest more in domestic discount air seats, which are marketable to all destinations including every capital city, to bring confidence to interstate travel,” says ATIC Executive Director Simon Westaway.
“All capitals and our entire domestic flight network need to be eligible for discount fares through the Government’s Tourism Aviation Network Support Program to help reset our industry.
“Ongoing border restrictions require further targeted federal financial assistance to still struggling tourism businesses until the risks of the virus outbreak are reduced by the vaccine rollout.
“We repeat the call for national consistency across Federal and State Governments to get the national vaccine rollout efficiently moving and a unified response to declared virus hotpots.”
Recently released Federal tourism figures show the industry has lost a collective $78 billion in domestic and international visitor spending.
“38% of Australian tourism businesses have told us they are cutting jobs and reducing workforce hours to stay viable with the ending of JobKeeper,” says Westaway.
“60% of tourism enterprises are in a weaker position since COVID-19, 47% remain open but have fewer staff, and travel bookings and business activity are nationally down 25% at March end.
“This is a critical period for Australian tourism. Tourism businesses no longer have the protection of JobKeeper or a rapid national vaccine rollout to help rebuild confidence in travel,” he says.