Tropical tourism strongest when regions work together

REGIONAL TOURISM

Victoria Stone-Meadows

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Tourism messaging for Tropical North Queensland is stronger when the regions work together according to Tourism Port Douglas and Daintree Executive Officer Tara Bennett.


Ms Bennett’s comments follow remarks made by Enterprise North Executive Manager Kevin Byrne last week. 

Mr Byrne asserted that Cairns tourism messaging would be stronger if it were separate from the overall ‘Tropical North Queensland’ brand. 


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Ms Bennett said his comments only served to reflect the importance of local tourism organisations working within the wider tourism framework.

“Cairns don’t have an equivalent to Tourism Port Douglas and Daintree (TPDD), they are under the Tourism Tropical North Queensland (TTNQ) banner,” she said.

“This just highlights the gap that exists for Cairns that they don’t have a stand-alone tourism body of their own.

“It’s important to have regional branding and a regional body inside the TTNQ brand because that is a really broad story for them to tell.” 

The TTNQ brand encompasses regions such as Cairns, Port Douglas and Mossman, The Daintree, the Cassowary Coast, and the Atherton Tablelands.

Ms Bennett is sure if Cairns did establish a local tourism body focused on Cairns messaging, it would not negatively impact the tourism activities and messaging of the Port Douglas and Daintree areas.

“We have a strong brand and we are recognised as a stand-alone brand domestically and internationally,” she said.

“Cairns and the visitor market there are really complementary to ours and the gateway to our region is the Cairns airport so we are all reliant on that.

“Being a part of TTNQ benefits all of us and, being a remote region of Australia, we are so dependent on each other; Port Douglas and Daintree are strong brands but we are all stronger with each other and being part of the same story.” 

The Queensland state government has committed an additional $1 million to tourism across the north and far north of Queensland following record flooding in the Townsville and surrounding region.

Ms Bennett confirmed some of that money would be directed to TPDD to help grow visitor numbers following a dip in tourism in the area.

“It is great [the state government] have recognised there has been an impact beyond Townsville because of the messaging about the floods,” she said.

“Since the flooding incident and through February, we have worked with TTNQ through Tourism and Events Queensland to petition for funding to be made available to overcome the drop in visitation.

“With this funding, we will be able to highlight how we have been affected by the miss-messaging and there are activities planned that will be rolled out for this region with Council, which has really put a spotlight on how are recovering.”

 

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