Business is mindful of the challenges ahead
I WOULD like to start the column this week by acknowledging the efforts of Mayor Andrew Willcox and our CEO Craig Turner who have done a lot of advocacy work at all levels of government.
Recent funding announcements for Tourism Infrastructure Investment and Tourism Marketing are a pleasant surprise and are largely attributable to them both.
It was exciting to learn that during 2016 the Whitsundays became the most popular destination for visitors to experience the reef and the islands of the GBR, with 44% of all commercial visits to the marine park taking place here.
It was wonderful to see the cruise ships in the Whitsundays since Easter and town has been buzzing.
The feedback we’ve received from cruise ships is that their guests’ experience have been very good.
While things are improving, we do understand there are still challenges ahead of us and there are those that are going through a difficult period.
While we are saying we are open for business, we remain mindful of those challenges.
On the marketing front, it was timely that the Tourism Whitsundays East Coast Roadshow took place last week.
During the roadshow, tourism operators along with Tourism Whitsunday staff trained over 500 retail travel agents in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, providing updates on the region and specific information about each of the individual products represented.
In Sydney, we also caught up with Tourism Australia (TA) and presented to 56 TA staff on the Whitsundays region. This hasn’t occurred for some years and our presentation was well received by the team at TA.
To everyone within the tourism industry, while we go through a challenging period, one of the things we can ensure is to provide great customer service, even a smile and a welcome ‘hello’ goes a long way.
We live in a spectacular location and while there is some damage, we remain Australia’s iconic sailing, reef and island holiday destination.