By Rama Gaind.
Australians have been through a nightmare summer – with bushfires and floods – causing record-breaking damage across the continent. Fires, in particular, have had devastating consequences. Lives were lost, homes destroyed, havoc wreaked through towns and cities, blazes tore through national parks, bushland, wooded areas, many hectares have burnt and death of wildlife.
The worst fire season on record has also impacted tourism numbers.
Now, the affected communities need our help – they require us to act. To lend a helping hand, many ‘road to recovery’-style projects have sprung into action, setting up fund-raising efforts and encouraging travel to local and national destinations.
Millions of dollars have been raised in donations to help support those in need. Australia’s generosity knows no bounds!
How can we all lend a helping hand? Many amazing initiatives have been set-up. Just donate, volunteer and travel.
As part of the national bushfire recovery effort, Tourism Australia has kicked off a new domestic campaign, ‘Holiday Here This Year’. The campaign encourages Australians to get out there and see their own “backyard”. Whether it is a weekend away near home or a trip to another state or discovering somewhere in Australia they’ve always wanted to visit.
The NSW Government’s Tourism Recovery package is a multi-faceted program that encourages visits to NSW, to fund new local events and assist tourism businesses to develop, promote and sell their tourism products.
These campaigns show how everyone can directly support the recovery by simply holidaying Down Under.
The message is clear: Australia is open for business and keen to welcome visitors, both national and international.
According to Tourism Australia’s Managing Director, Phillipa Harrison, the Holiday Here This Year campaign will help spread the important message that Australian tourism is ready and eager to welcome visitors.
“That is why we are asking people to commit to holidaying in their own backyard this year – whether it’s a drive up the coast, taking a trip interstate, or ticking off a bucket list destination – and to spread the word that Australia is ready to welcome more travellers,” Ms Harrison said.
“Holiday Here This Year is a practical way that Australians can help bushfire affected communities by filling hotel rooms, restaurants, caravan parks, beaches and more. The launch of the campaign is the first of a package of measures that we’ll be rolling out over the coming weeks and months to help Australian tourism rebuild and recover.”
“There is no doubt that Australian tourism has been hit hard by the recent bushfires. It’s critical that we help the industry get back on its feet as soon as possible. The desire from ordinary Australians to assist the communities impacted both directly and indirectly by the bushfires has been overwhelming. This campaign seeks to show them how they can directly support the recovery by simply holidaying here in Australia.”
Make your holiday happen. See Australia, commit to holidays at home … and spread the word. You even have the chance to share your experiences at: #holidayherethisyear.
The first phase of the NSW Government’s Tourism Recovery package is a new community-driven campaign – ‘Now’s The Time To Love NSW’ – led by Destination NSW. It urges travellers to book a getaway that gives back and generates authentic, real-time imagery of the many holiday destinations in NSW.
Now’s the time to #LoveNSW – get inspired and start planning a holiday or mini break for a getaway that gives back by staying, eating and shopping in NSW.
‘By staying and spending in towns, regions and cities in NSW and sharing the love on social media, you’ll help bushfire and drought-affected communities get back on their feet.’
It’s easy for the public to get involved: first, book a #RecoveryWeekend, take a day trip or schedule a holiday in NSW. While you’re exploring, take photos showcasing NSW that feature hands in the shape of heart and share them on social media with the hashtag #LoveNSW.
It’s easy for the public to get involved: first, book a #RecoveryWeekend, take a day trip or schedule a holiday in NSW. While you’re exploring, take photos showcasing NSW that feature hands in the shape of heart and share them on social media with the hashtag #LoveNSW. Business operators can also get involved.
Some other options
Fly with Qantas and explore NSW and the surrounding regions. Visit areas including the Snowy Mountains, Southern Highlands, North Coast, South Coast, ACT, Central Coast, Country NSW, Hunter Valley and the Hawkesbury.
The new Bondi-to-Manly walking track takes in Sydney’s best views, including the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge, as well as, beautiful beaches. Then there’s Lord Howe Island, Byron Bay, Coffs Harbour, Dubbo, Armidale, Newcastle, Orange, Port Macquarie, Tamworth, Wagga Wagga,
Get inspired and take short breaks. On a day trip, take the road from Sydney to the Blue Mountains. Take a walk on the wild side on the Central West of NSW. See exotic animals, luxury lodges and a sunrise cockatoo chorus at the Zoofari Lodge Dubbo.
Take advantage of the great accommodation packages at Accor hotels. Book your NSW recovery break with Accor from $127 per night. In fact, look into an alternative where the longer you stay, the more you’ll save across Australia. If you book early and save, you’ll get up to 25 per cent off when you book and pay at least 30 days in advance.
Recharge your batteries and support communities affected by bushfires, drought and floods. Whether it’s a weekend trip, a mid-week break or you’re travelling from afar, there really is no place like Australia!