In massive news for Aussie tourism, China has returned Australia’s Approved Destination Status (ADS) for the first time since borders re-opened.
With Australia now among China’s list of approved outgoing group travel destinations, Aussie tourism operators can expect a big boost in business.
In 2019, ADS travellers accounted for around $580 million of the $2.1 billion spent by 1.4 million tourists from China, which was the largest and most valuable inbound traveller market for the Australian visitor economy.
Minister for Trade and Tourism and Special Minister of State, the Hon. Don Farrell said in a statement that “Australia remains a premium tourism destination for Chinese travellers, and we are looking forward to welcoming back group tours”.
“Today’s announcement follows the recent launch in China of Tourism Australia’s successful $125 million Come and Say G’Day campaign,” he stated.
“The campaign kicked off on 29 June in China, and is already proving to be a success, with the television commercial receiving over 66 million views across all channels.
“We know millions of prospective Chinese visitors are being inspired to Come and Say G’day and we look forward to welcoming more of them to Australia as the ADS resumes.”
Tourism Australia Managing Director Phillipa Harrison said, “the return of Chinese group travellers is good news for the Australian tourism industry and will help to support our visitor economy’s ongoing recovery”.
“Chinese travellers have been returning to Australia in growing numbers since the start of the year and the return of the group travel segment will provide another important boost,” she added.
“Underlying demand for an Australian holiday remains strong in China and Tourism Australia recently launched the global Come and Say G’day campaign in the market to encourage even more Chinese travellers to visit.”
Air travel gains
Australia’s re-inclusion in the ADS scheme should also be good news for air travel to and from Australia, with increased demand likely to drive more capacity into and out of Asia (and onwards) – and theoretically, help drive down airfares.
“The easing of travel restrictions for Chinese group tours visiting Australia is great news for Australian tourism and we welcome the announcement as we gear up to recommence Qantas flights between Sydney and Shanghai in October,” Qantas International CEO Cam Wallace said.
“Pre-COVID, Australia was a top destination for Chinese visitors and we look forward to helping bring more travellers from China to Australia on our flights again soon.”
Using its A330 aircraft, Qantas will relaunch Sydney-Shanghai flights for the first time in more than three and a half years on 29 October 2023.
Last month, Tourism Australia launched a major campaign around the FIFA Women’s World Cup.
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