Queensland tourism officials are predicting the tourism industry in the Sunshine State will hit a new record this year with a rise in holidaymakers.
Tourism Minister Kate O’Connor said the latest figures showed the state had hit its highest numbers in years.
“We have the lowest numbers of visitors in the country, so we’ve got a number of challenges we’ve been working through, and it’s a very challenging year for the industry,” she said.
“There are a lot of things we need to look at, we need better monitoring of things like where the water goes, how long it stays on the beach, and the types of things people can get away with, and that will come with the introduction of new laws.”
She said Queensland had experienced a significant rise in visitor numbers, which had been driven by a number a new resorts, more people spending on dining and drinking, and an increased number of people staying overnight in the resort community.
“So the number of visitors is up, we have the highest numbers of people visiting, so it’s certainly not just a seasonal thing,” Ms O’Connell said.
“We’re in a very competitive environment.
We’re seeing a lot more people going back to Queensland, and we’ve also seen a significant increase in the number going back.”
Tourism was once a mainstay of the Queensland economy, but the mining boom has led to a drop in visitors and many industries have struggled to keep up.
“For the last 10 years or so, we’ve seen the tourism sector grow at an unprecedented rate,” Ms Widdicombe said.
“It’s still one of the best performing sectors in the state.”
Tourists are encouraged to book accommodation in hotels and restaurants, and they’re encouraged to visit other Queensland towns and cities, including Townsville, Cairns, Wollongong and Ipswich.
“It’s an incredibly exciting time for tourism in Queensland, we’re getting more people out to visit Queensland, so there’s more opportunities for people to come to Queensland,” Ms Mooley said.
Tourist and travel agency owner and Queensland Tourism Council chief executive Mike Williams said it was important to maintain the quality of Queensland’s tourist experience.
“The Queensland Tourism Commission continues to work hard to ensure we are providing our guests with an enjoyable and safe holiday experience,” he said.
The Queensland Government also announced it would introduce new tourism rules, including a new tourist identification card, which would require all visitors to have a travel document, like a driver’s licence.
“In the coming months, Queensland Government will be launching new rules to further enhance the safety and security of Queenslanders,” Tourism Minister Kate Latham said.
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