Tourism salutes its very best

AFTER a tough year in the holiday industry, tourism operators have the chance to let their hair down at the Fraser Coast South Burnett Tourism Awards in Hervey Bay tonight.

FCSB Tourism’s newly appointed marketing and media manager Danielle Andreuzzi said more than 240 people were expected to attend the sell-out, calypso-themed event at the Bayswater Hotel in Urangan from 6pm to see awards handed out in 29 categories ranging from accommodation and tour operators to information centres and regional attractions.

“It really covers the whole scope of the tourism industry,” she said.

FCSB Tourism general manager Damien Massingham said the awards recognised and rewarded operators who excelled in their particular category and simply preparing the entry submission allowed owners and managers to analyse how the business was travelling.

Ms Andreuzzi said it had been a challenging year in the industry for not only the Fraser Coast but also for Queensland and Australia.

“We have had some operators contact us and say that they’ve had a really fantastic year and things have been doing really well for them, better than they expected, but obviously there are operators who are doing it tough,” she said, and added the tourism sector would continue to be a challenge in the coming year.

“Obviously we’re competing with not only the rising Australian dollar, interest rates are two per cent higher than they were this time last year, domestically people aren’t doing any discretionary spending on travel and going out to dinner so that will affect us.”

Ms Andreuzzi said the tourism board was continually looking at new ways to market the region to bring more tourists in and to help tourism operators.

“We will continue to look at campaigns across the year to ensure that tourism continues to grow for the region,” she said.

‘There are operators who are doing it tough’

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