A TOURISM and events delegation is visiting China this week, ahead of the launch of Tourism Australia’s Come & Say G’day campaign in the country on Thu.
The official program for the delegation began today in Guangzhou, and will continue in Shanghai later in the week, before arriving in Chengdu for the takeoff of the new tourism drive.
The delegation includes Tourism Australia Managing Director Phillipa Harrison, state and territory tourism organisation leaders, business events leaders, and airport representatives.
It will meet with important partners in China, including China Southern Airlines and China Eastern Airlines, as well as some of the country’s major travel service providers, including Trip.com and Jinjiang Travel.
The decade of incredible growth in travel from China to Australia was built on the back of a strong aviation environment, with an average of 158 flights per week in 2019, totalling 2.2 million seats a year.
Seat capacity from China will return to 54% this month, or 70 flights per week, up from 42% last month, and up from about 5% at the end of last year.
“China is such an important market for Australia’s visitor economy and that’s why the timing of this visit with tourism and business events industry leaders is so critical as we welcome the return of Chinese travellers,” Harrison said.
“The delegation will take part in meetings with major airlines and travel providers, showing Australia’s commitment to work with partners to strengthen aviation capacity between our two countries and get travel bookings to Australia back to the levels we have seen in the past.”
Minister for Tourism Don Farrell said Chinese travellers have long been an important part of Australia’s visitor economy.
“China was Australia’s biggest market in 2019, with 1.4 million Chinese travellers visiting and contributing $12.4 billion in visitor spend,” he said.
“We are pleased to see that since the start of the year aviation capacity between China and Australia has rebounded to more than 50% of 2019 levels.
“Along with capacity building to support demand for more Chinese travellers to visit Australia, the timing is right time to introduce Ruby the kangaroo with an invitation to Chinese travellers to Come and Say G’day.”
A localised version of the ‘Don’t Go Small, Go Australia’ campaign was launched in Mar targeting VFR travellers, as well as pent up demand for a holiday Down Under.