Australia is Open for Business! That is the very firm message from Australian tourism providers and the Government.
Australian tourism had a rough start to 2020, with widespread, devastating bushfires throughout New South Wales and Victoria that got a great deal of attention on the world stage. The fires were followed closely by recent flooding in New South Wales and Queensland, although the heavy rain has been welcomed for helping to put out the fires still burning. Compounding all of these domestic problems, Australia has also seen a drop in tourists from China, Australia’s most significant tourist market, due to public fears and travel restrictions arising from the spread of coronavirus. And all of this is happening in Australia’s traditional peak season, right through summer.
It is no wonder that Australian tourism has felt a bit of the pinch. If you are an Airbnb host, you might be feeling a bit nervous about your prospects this year.
But it is not all doom and gloom ahead. To help kickstart tourism for 2020, the Australian Government has committed $76 million for several initiatives through the National Bushfire Recovery Fund.
The initiatives include funding to start the Holiday Here campaign to encourage Australians to holiday at home this year. Airbnb rentals outside of major population centres should particularly see the benefit of this, as Australians head to towns and rural centres to show solidarity. However, even if you’ve got an Airbnb rental in Sydney, you will probably still see benefit from this campaign.
Over 10 million of Sydney’s annual 15 million tourists come from Australia itself, so even a small change to see more domestic tourism will make a big difference in the total numbers. If you do start to see a downswing in bookings, it is worth thinking about securing an Airbnb property management agent, who will be better able to help you to ensure bookings to get through the downturn.
But its not just domestic tourists who are being targeted. Tourism Australia and Australia’s diplomatic network are also working on a massive international campaign to encourage visitors to come to Australia, and to challenge misunderstandings about the impact of the bushfires on tourism opportunities in Australia. The campaign is getting a massive $25 million funding boost, to remind international tourists of how amazing Australia is for a holiday, and to reassure them that they will be safe and still able to do everything they want to do—including seeing koalas.
Also helping the cause is the continued weakness in the Australian dollar, which is not likely to improve any time soon. The lowered value in the Australian dollar is excellent for Airbnb hosts because not only does it make Australians less likely to go overseas for their holidays, it also makes Australia even more desirable as a holiday destination for international travellers.
Although the recent rains have caused some flooding, the impact is likely to be short-lived, with Sydney and the greater New South Wales expected to soon head back into the sunny, warm summer weather for which Australia is famous.
There are unquestionably blue skies ahead!
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