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F1 Australian Grand Prix drawing corporates

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F1 Australian Grand Prix drawing corporates
Australia’s Formula 1 Grand Prix is shaping up to draw a major corporate crowd, in addition to high hotel occupancies.

The four day event kicks off today in Melbourne. Corporate Traveller, Flight Centre’s arm servicing small and medium-sized businesses, said it had seen a huge jump in corporate travel bookings to Melbourne around the event, compared to 2023.

Corporate Traveller has tracked a 146 per cent increase in bookings around the F1 Australian Grand Prix for 2024.

“It’s been a hard couple of years for many businesses, but our data strongly suggests that businesses across the country see value in major events like the Grand Prix,” said Tom Walley, Corporate Traveller’s Australian managing director.

“This year, we have seen a massive increase in attendance by Canberra-based corporates compared to last, however, the majority of bookings are still from Sydney, followed by Brisbane, across both years.

“While expensive, events like this are a prime opportunity to network, nurture existing relationships and develop new business and sponsorship opportunities, savvy businesses from all over Australia are beginning to make the most of those benefits.”

Corporate bookings from Canberra have jumped 300 per cent, while bookings from Adelaide have climbed 226 per cent. Sydney bookings jumped 194 per cent and represent over a third of all bookings. Brisbane and Perth also posted major gains.

International bookings remain a small chunk of the corporate travel pie, at just 9 per cent.

Walley believes growing corporate attendance at the Grand Prix, where corporate experiences start in the thousands of dollars, is down to corporates valuing their staff.

“Business owners recognise the importance of investing time and money into their team and associates for long-term gains,” he said.

“Grand Prix attendance has grown exponentially over the past couple of years as businesses recover, maintain and grow in a tumultuous economic climate.

“This is one expense that has the long-term potential to relieve financial pressure as well as give businesses and their employees a morale boost and something exciting to look forward to.”

Meanwhile, the event’s preferred hotel partner, Marriott International, has reported average occupancies of over 90 per cent at their Melbourne properties over the Grand Prix weekend.

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