Room hire a bit rich
ONCE upon a time Port Douglas was a thriving tourist location with the rich, the famous and the spend-free happily donating their money to the local economy.
These days Port Douglas could be considered nothing more than a beachside suburb of Cairns Regional Council and becoming more so a destination of the thrift and budget-hunting tourist.
Businesses are dropping like never before and more and more you hear about how tough they are doing it as no one is spending.
Accommodation venues are dropping room rates to the lowest possible price trying to lure the tourist dollar in to the stricken town. Unfortunately the same cannot be said for the unsuspecting local who wishes to hold a function.
Trying to organise a private reception has become a simple nightmare to the point that we are now considering having our function in either our home or in Cairns to escape the extortion of overpriced venues and/or drink prices charged in this town. Surely gross turnover rather than gross profit has to count in this financial climate, especially as one could be utilising an empty room.
To this point, one venue advised us there would be a 10 per cent extra charge if it was a cash bar for the inconvenience. This brought the price of a soft drink to over $6 a glass and a local beer to near on $9 each. One stubby at Dan Murphies $1.60, an 80 per cent mark up on top of a $1250 room hire.
Another venue offered drinks at $30 per hour per person also on top of room hire. Another venue $1100 room hire plus drinks also at high margins plus the cost for tables, chairs, tablecloths etc.
One other venue never even called back - it’s now three months. Seriously, if you’re all that hard up for business try walking in the shoes of the common wage earner and reassess your venue charges.