Minister’s view: Nov 2017

Steven Ciobo, Federal Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment

The last month has been a particularly exciting one for Australia’s tourism industry with the launch of Tourism Australia’s new global youth campaign, showcasing Australia as a memorable and desirable youth destination.

The youth travel sector is crucial to our country’s tourism industry; young travellers make up 25 per cent of all international visitors to Australia and contribute 46 per cent, or $18.7 billion, of all international visitor spend. The value of these travellers is amplified by the fact that over half of them return to Australia at some point.

They are also a valuable driver of growth in our regional tourism industries as young people typically stay longer, spend more and travel further in their search for unique and exciting experiences, found in abundance across Australia.

Recognising the importance and potential of this sector, the Turnbull Coalition Government committed an additional $10 million in funding for Tourism Australia (TA) last year to entice more young people to visit Australia.

From this, Aussie News Today was born. Harnessing the power of social media, youth-focused news channel Aussie New Today broadcasts entertaining and quirky Aussie stories to young people in some of our key tourism markets, giving them endless reasons to escape to Australia.

From the best surf breaks to a koala wandering into a supermarket, Aussie News Today brings to life some of the most unique attractions and life-changing experiences that are so keenly sought after by young travellers.

In recent years, advocacy has become central to how TA promotes Australia; the ‘Friends of Australia’ program comprising high profile and respected Australians, harnesses their international profile to promote our country.

That is why three young Aussies — Nick Cummins (aka The Honey Badger), actor and former Home and Away star Lincoln Lewis, and television presenter Teigan Nash — have been announced as Aussie News Today anchors. They will travel around the country to report on the best news from all over Australia.

In addition, eight young people from the United Kingdom and Europe will embark on a road-trip of a lifetime around Australia, posting social content as they go, and I am confident that local tourism businesses will welcome them with open arms when they come to town.

One of the many successes of TA has been its social media strategy, which encourages followers tell their stories. This will be no different for Aussie News Today, so I encourage industry to get on board and submit their own ‘Aussie news’ for the chance to be featured on ANT via @Australia and #AussieNewsToday.

There are a number of ways tourism businesses can get involved in this campaign and I encourage them to follow the Facebook page ‘Aussie News Today’ to find out more.

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