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North American tourists urged to visit southeast Queensland

06 January 2020

Kayaking on the Brisbane River

A major tourism campaign set to reach 26 million people has been launched by the Palaszczuk Government today to lure North American travellers to southeast Queensland.

A new Memorandum of Understanding between Brisbane Marketing, Destination Gold Coast and Tourism and Events Queensland will see an investment of $600,000 in the North American market over the next year.

Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones said with 14 weekly services between Brisbane and the US, as well as new Qantas flights set to take off between Chicago and Brisbane and San Francisco and Brisbane in April, the timing was right for a strong marketing push into the region.

“American tourists are classified as ‘high value travellers’. This makes the US a lucrative target market for Queensland,” she said.

“Brisbane is becoming a destination in its own right.

“Of course we have our iconic beaches on the Gold and Sunshine Coasts and our beautiful rainforests.

“The reality is Australia has an edge because there are things to see and do here, that you can’t experience anywhere else on earth.”

Ms Jones said the campaign is set to reach 26 million people, deliver almost 56,000 room nights and more than $10 million in its first year and is focused around the theme of the outdoors.

“Southeast Queensland will be pitched as the place where Aussie urban culture meets natural wonders,” she said.

“The tourism industry now employs one in 10 Queenslanders. Growing tourism is crucial to creating jobs in our state – that’s why this campaign is so important.”

Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said the campaign would help drive Brisbane’s share of the American visitor market and showcase the River City as a destination that embodies the best of Australia.

“Brisbane’s subtropical outdoor lifestyle, stunning natural assets, alfresco dining scene and new investment in visitor infrastructure, along with our shared World War II history, makes us a compelling destination for Americans considering a trip to Queensland,” Cr Schrinner said.

“This marketing campaign, coupled with new flights from Chicago and San Francisco direct to Brisbane, will drive visits to our city and boost our local economy.”

Destination Gold Coast CEO Annaliese Battista said a collaborative approach can be highly effective when promoting Queensland to international markets.

“Long haul travellers to Australia are typically wanting to experience a range of locations,” said Ms Battista.

“Hunting in a pack in large global markets yields more return on investment, so that we all benefit from increased interest and visitation to Queensland.

“Our world-class aquatic and coastal offering, natural beauty and unique wildlife encounters are some of key drivers for US travellers and as a destination there is no shortage of these experiences on offer.

“Last year we stepped up our presence in the North American market and through this partnership, our ability to lure more high spending travellers to Australia’s favourite playground is amplified.

“Gold Coast attracted a record 42,000 US travellers, up 4.2 per cent for the ending June 2019, and with new Qantas flights into Brisbane coming online in 2020, we expect this to continue to grow.”

North America is Queensland’s third largest international market, with 301,000 visitors spending $541.2 million in the state in the year ending June 2019.

The campaign will begin on January 15 and run across print and digital platforms across North America.