Australia is one of the most sought-after tourism destinations in the world, regularly hitting the top of wish lists for travellers from other countries. But for those of us who live here, Australia tends to sink to the bottom of the pile.
Research to be released at the National Tourism & Events Excellence Conference in Melbourne this week suggests events could be a key factor in encouraging us to travel on home soil. The Roy Morgan findings show three-quarters of Australians are interested in travelling for a sporting event or music festival. The weightings are incredibly even, with 25 per cent interested in sports events, 24 per cent in cultural events and 27 per cent in music events.
Single people are much more likely to travel for events than are couples, while those earning more than $50,000 a year are much more likely to travel for a specific event. Young people favour music events, unsurprisingly, while those with children are more likely to attend sporting events.
The research fits with a pattern of Australians taking short trips within Australia. Domestic travel is showing signs of recovery from the economic doom and gloom but the number of nights away from home indicate many take only brief breaks.
Overall, the Roy Morgan research suggests almost 90 per cent of Australians will take a holiday in the year. Less than 60 per cent intend to take a domestic break, while almost half intend to head overseas (of course, some travellers will take more than one holiday).
The Tourism & Transport Forum says Australia needs big dollars spent on new tourism products to give Australians more reasons to travel at home. With the dollar tipped to remain strong, it will take significant investment in new accommodation and tourism products for Australia to compete, the organisation says.
However, investors could struggle to get a return on their money, with the Roy Morgan research showing travellers prioritise price over quality when it comes to domestic travel packages, while quality comes first for overseas trips.
The research also indicates that… (click here to keep reading this article by Jane E. Fraser)