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Great Queensland Hotel Deals

Great Queensland Hotel Deals
Victorian Floods
(5) marks: 1

Believe it or not Victoria’s floods have added to problems for Queensland hotel and resort operators who already faced the bleak prospect of empty rooms for the September school holidays.

Already struggling because of the high Australian dollar which is driving away international visitors from the Sunshine State, it appears Victorians from flood-devastated areas have now cancelled their Queensland holiday plans.

The high vacancy rate for September means there is heavily discounted accommodation available in Victorians’ favourite Queensland playground, the Gold Coast.

The floods that followed last week’s downpour in Victoria have led to a rush of cancellations from affected people in Benalla, Shepparton, Wangaratta, and Echuca, many of whom would traditionally drive to Queensland during the school break.

This means that for latecomers, there are some fantastic holiday bargains, with many resorts having dropped school holiday surcharges.

Tourism Queensland’s Gold Coast division was more upbeat about the September holiday outlook however, citing figures that more Melburnians are visiting the Gold Coast now than before the global financial crisis struck.

Mary Mourgelaf, director for the Gold Coast and hinterland, said some operators had indicated that accommodation was ‘‘starting to fill up quite quickly. They’re looking at higher occupancy than this time last year.”

Queensland Tourism Minister Peter Lawlor agreed. ‘‘Given the anecdotal feedback we’re receiving from Queensland tourism operators, together with the results we’ve seen in visitation from Victoria earlier this year, we expect Melburnians will continue the trend and be the key domestic market driving bookings for Queensland during the coming September school holidays,’’ he said.

But it’s not just the Gold Coast that has great deals for the last minute traveller.

Tourism Queensland’s regional director for the tropics and the Great Barrier Reef, Jeff Gillies said, ‘‘There is availability, but don’t leave it to the last minute,’’
‘‘Port Douglas has a lot of accommodation options up there and apartments, so there’s still some availability there, as there is in Palm Cove.’’

But Queensland operators are competing against traditional rivals for the Aussie travel dollar such as Bali, Fiji and Thailand, added to which Qantas have reports a jump in interest for Hawaii, and is adding extra flights.

Now looks like the ideal time for travellers from the southern states to make the most of their travel dollar and enjoy a getaway in Queensland.

Michael Palmer

Date: 12/09/2010

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