The Tourism & Transport Forum Australia (TTF) has congratulated the NSW Government on the overhaul of the State’s regional tourism approach and the creation of six new Destination Networks to encourage more Australians and overseas visitors to experience regional and rural NSW.
The NSW Government will invest $43 million over the next four years in six new Destination Networks – Riverina Murray, Southern NSW, North Coast, Country & Outback, Sydney Surrounds North and Sydney Surrounds South – that will work closely with tourism organisations, industry, Destination NSW and Government to re-energise tourism campaigns to attract more visitors.
“NSW is more than just Sydney – it is a State of exciting and diverse experiences that visitors, particularly international visitors, are increasingly craving and we need to be getting the message out on what regional and rural NSW has to offer,” said Margy Osmond, TTF CEO.
“The new Destination Networks deliver on a key recommendation of the Visitor Economy Taskforce Report. The NSW Government and the Tourism Minister Stuart Ayres are to be congratulated on reforming regional and rural tourism into a modern and dynamic structure that will work more effectively with key stakeholders.
“We need to take a bigger picture approach to how we campaign and market regional and rural NSW and that’s what these six new Destination Networks should help to deliver.
“Regional and rural NSW does very well in attracting domestic overnight visitors with more than double the number visiting Sydney – 19.5 million visitors to regional NSW in 2015 compared to 9.3 million to Sydney in the same period.
“However in the lucrative international visitor market regional NSW attracted 689,700 tourists in 2015 compared to the 3.2 million that visited Sydney. This is why encouraging and facilitating regional dispersal is particularly important for our regional communities, which rely on tourism to support their local and regional economies.
“This is where the new Destination Networks will create a tremendous opportunity to better coax more international tourists into visiting regional and rural NSW by engaging the industry and Governments in dynamic new campaigns that really sell the uniqueness of our State.”