QUEENSLAND'S REGIONAL TOWNS want you.
Back in May last year I blogged about the work opportunities in regional areas for grey nomads, but local tourism associations and industry organisations realise there are plenty of travellers who just want to holiday. These bodies are keen to help you enjoy yourself – and spend a few dollars – in their neck of the woods.
BRINGING VISITORS TO QLD
Last year the Qld Tourism Industry Council commissioned research on ways to attract travellers to regional areas, and to encourage them to linger longer. The information was then collected by Savannah Way Limited, who organised touring market workshops in 11 centres across Outback Qld, Townsville and Tropical North Qld. In each workshop, local tourism stakeholders identified their area’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats when it came to attracting RV travellers and encouraging them to extend their stay.
Interestingly, no two locations identified exactly the same issues, indicating that each region probably has something special and different to offer travellers.
HOW TO ATTRACT TOURISTS
A few of the ideas which came from the workshops included free bus services from camping areas to the town centre, pubs or clubs; more organised tours; development of walking and self-drive trails; better promotion of attractions, activities and experiences (such as bird-watching, cattle station stays, fossicking); establishment of businesses dedicated to RV/caravan repairs; improved telecommunication coverage; development of local hospitality and tourism skills; establishment of links with surrounding regions and improving local businesses' understanding of the real value of RV tourism.
In other words these often-small communities are keen to welcome RV travellers and do all they can to ensure you have an enjoyable and hassle-free stay – preferably for more than just a night or two.
By the way, one issue which is dear to the heart of many readers and which came up at a number of the workshops was the development and management of free or low cost campsites and caravan parks.
So let's discuss: what would get you to visit and stay longer in these towns in regional Qld – or any state for that matter? What would justify the extra time, hours spent behind the wheel, and dollars spent on fuel to reach these more remote locations?
Have your say below and I’ll ensure the link is passed on to the people at Savannah Way Limited.
You can check the research and other relevant documents at www.savannahway.com.au/research.html.
WORDS AND PICS Steve Farmer