Over­haul needed

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Opinion -

THE tourism in­dus­try is an un­der­rated area of our econ­omy, the rea­son be­ing, in my opin­ion, that few peo­ple un­der­stand it.

The ma­jor fo­cus by the WA Govern­ment is on our widely sep­a­rated icons, such as Rot­tnest Is­land, the South­ern Forests, the Pin­na­cles, Broome, etc.

Re­gional bod­ies such as lo­cal gov­ern­ments, vis­i­tor cen­tres and busi­ness groups do their best to bal­ance their spend­ing on tourism with a re­turn on in­vest­ment for this spend­ing which will ben­e­fit and grow their com­mu­ni­ties.

This ap­proach to tourism needs an over­haul, in­tro­duc­ing a busi­ness model to link and grow ex­ist­ing (and fu­ture) tourism des­ti­na­tions that can be used by both peak tourism in­dus­try bod­ies and the small­est tourism busi­ness as the prin­ci­ples of run­ning a busi­ness to give value to your cus­tomers while at the same time re­turn­ing a profit for the in­vest­ment in both dol­lars and time.

One of the eas­i­est ways to il­lus­trate and eval­u­ate a po­ten­tial tourism idea or re­fresh an ex­ist­ing tourism busi­ness is a flow chart that eval­u­ates 'yes' and 'no' paths lead­ing to a de­ci­sion which could im­prove a busi­ness or save a lot of heartache.

Ad­di­tion­ally, Western Aus­tralia is so vast it re­ally needs an in­te­grated trans­port plan, and rad­i­cal as it might seem, the govern­ment should con­sider es­tab­lish­ing its own low­cost tourism air­line con­nect­ing with lo­cal trans­port net­works around our state.

This idea could open up new tourism busi­nesses and, as a con­se­quence, em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties in lo­ca­tions not even thought of at the mo­ment.

Mil­lions of dol­lars are spent by gov­ern­ments sup­port­ing the tourism in­dus­try, but the ques­tion is whether this money is fund­ing the ar­eas that ac­tual grow tourism?

Mal McFetridge, Safety Bay.

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