NOW OR NEVER

Time is tick­ing on the Qan­tas dis­counted fares trial be­tween Perth and Broome and the busi­ness com­mu­nity has been urged to join the fight to make it per­ma­nent.

Broome Advertiser - - Front Page - Jakeb Wad­dell

Tourism op­er­a­tors and busi­ness own­ers have been urged to get on board and work to­gether in a bid to make cheap flights from Perth per­ma­nent.

Qan­tas launched its one-year dis­counted fares trial on the Perth to Broome re­turn route in Au­gust this year, but lo­cal tourism lead­ers have al­ready pulled their re­sources to­gether in an at­tempt to con­tinue the cheaper prices be­yond the trial.

Aus­tralia’s North West Tourism and Broome Vis­i­tor Cen­tre sent out a sur­vey to busi­nesses across the Kim­ber­ley town last month, en­cour­ag­ing them to pro­vide ev­i­dence of the pos­i­tive im­pacts of the flights, as well as sug­ges­tions for im­prove­ments.

To­mor­row is the fi­nal day op­er­a­tors can com­plete the form, which in­cludes ques­tions about in­creases in sales and for­ward book­ings dur­ing the trial, the spe­cific ways they have helped pro­mote the flights and how the ini­tia­tive could be al­tered to help lo­cal com­pa­nies.

BVC man­ager Mel Virgo said the flights could be cru­cial to Broome’s fu­ture.

“The dis­counted scheme makes Broome more ac­ces­si­ble as a hol­i­day des­ti­na­tion all-year round and on­go­ing vis­i­tors will ex­tend the sea­son out for lo­cal op­er­a­tors,” she said.

“It boosts the num­ber of peo­ple com­ing to town and this pos­i­tively flows down to busi­nesses and tourism com­pa­nies.

“There is one day left for busi­nesses to have their say and I en­cour­age them all to help Broome’s fu­ture.

“We are work­ing to­gether with ANWT to get this done and ev­ery­one needs to get on board to make this hap­pen.”

ANWT chief ex­ec­u­tive Natasha Ma­har said sur­vey feed­back from the com­mu­nity had been very pos­i­tive so far.

“Early sur­vey in­di­ca­tions re­veal over 65 per cent of re­spon­dents no­ticed an in­crease in ei­ther oc­cu­pancy and sales or foot traf­fic since the in­tro­duc­tion of these Qan­tas sales fares,” she said.

“This is clear ev­i­dence the flights are hav­ing a pos­i­tive im­pact on Broome.”

Broome In­ter­na­tional Air­port chief ex­ec­u­tive Paul McSweeney said the trial had been a huge suc­cess to date, with more than 10,000 seats booked.

Re­search by BVC and ANWT is be­ing com­pleted at the re­quest of Tourism Min­is­ter Paul Pa­palia, Shadow Tourism Min­is­ter Libby Met­tam, Qan­tas and Tourism WA.

The spe­cial week­end fares are still avail­able at $199 one-way dur­ing high sea­son (be­tween June 21, 2019-Au­gust 17, 2019) and $179 un­til June 20.

AQan­tas flight de­parts Broome In­ter­na­tional Air­port.

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