Stephanie Coleman & Jane Osborne of Downunder Travel
Only in Australia!
Crikey! It was clear that the gang from Tourism Australia put in some hard yakka last week as they lashed out on lashings of turps for their mates in the industry in Toronto. Luckily not a 2 pot screamer or budgie smuggler were in sight.*
Ah yes, no one speaks English quite like the Aussies. And we – a crowd of some 60 industry types – were all ears as Robert Keddy of Tourism Australia’s office in LAX, ably assisted by Lisa Wooldridge, Director of Marketing for The Americas as well as VoX’er Australia Account Directors Paul Larcher and Carey Marotta sang the praises of the Land Down Under.
More and more Canadians are discovering the charms of Australia: business from our country is up 3% year over year and Keddy says that trend will likely continue, thanks to added capacity from AC and NZ, that serves 8 cities in Oz from its Auckland hub. ”The airlines are making it more accessible and more comfortable to get there,” Keddy told me.
Larcher also praised Canadian agents for realizing that this destination has a lot of potential - and are increasingly becoming Aussie Specialists. The online program, which takes about 3½ hours in total, now has some 800 registered agents across the country.
“Australia is the size of the United States, so there’s a ton to see,” says Keddy, who recommends at least 2 weeks. A great idea is to concentrate on one area rather than trying to see it all - just as you wouldn’t try to see New York, LA and Miami on a 2 week holiday to the States.The Tourism Australia video that was screened showcased the amazing diversity of the country. One minute you felt like you were looking at Tahiti, the next minute the Canadian Rockies, the next minute Ireland. And Tourism Australia’s global ambassador Chris Hemsworth makes for some pretty nice visuals too!
* Translation: Goodness! It was clear that the gang from Tourism Australia put in some hard work last week as they generously treated their friends in the industry to lots of drinks. Luckily there wasn’t anyone who is very susceptible to alcohol or any men’s too-tight bathing suits present.