Another round of Great State Vouchers targeted to accommodation will keep the momentum of South Australia’s record-breaking occupancy rates going into the colder months.
From January to March 2021, regional accommodation in SA enjoyed its best three-month period yet, with the highest average occupancy, room nights stayed, and revenue ever recorded. For the month of March, hotels in the CBD hit the highest average occupancy for a month since the pandemic began and the highest occupancy of any mainland Australian capital city.
The record-breaking data coincides with the travel period of the previous round of Great State Vouchers targeted to accommodation, which – combined with round one – created over 62,000 room night bookings and a flow-on of more than $32 million spent in the state’s visitor economy.
It also comes as Adelaide was confirmed as having the 15th highest hotel occupancy in the world in March 2021 – from data analysed across 180 countries.
Premier Steven Marshall today announced that more accommodation vouchers worth up to $100 will stimulate travel across the state during the traditionally off-peak winter period – and in particular attract people into the city for mid-week staycations.
“The data is proof that this targeted stimulus through the Great State Voucher program is incredibly effective – it injects visitors and dollars directly into South Australian businesses and it sustains and creates jobs,” said Premier Marshall.
“The timing of the next round of accommodation vouchers couldn’t be better, we know April is a busy time with Easter, school holidays and the Anzac Day long weekend – and we’re keeping that momentum going through the winter months, with more vouchers for overnight stays, in addition to our experiences vouchers.
“We saw a huge response to the Great State Experiences Voucher scheme, with a total of 100,034 registrations for the ballot over the three days, including over 4500 from interstate.
“There are now around 50,000 vouchers out there, ready to be used to book tours and experiences from tomorrow. That’s tens of thousands of South Australian trips that otherwise wouldn’t have been taken – including from our state’s two largest interstate markets, which we know spend three times as much as intrastate.
“That is visitation and revenue created for hundreds of small businesses which make up an important sector of our visitor economy.”
Latest figures from global hotel data analytics firm, STR, show:
- Occupancy in regional South Australia in March 2021 hit the second highest level on record at 69 per cent – an increase on January and February 2021 at 64 and 60 per cent respectively.
- Regional SA recorded its highest demand for room nights on record in March 2021 at 131,000 room nights.
The March quarter (January to March 2021) was the best three-month period for regional accommodation ever recorded:
- Highest average occupancy on record for a three-month period at 64 per cent
- Highest average room nights stayed on record for a three-month period at 119,000
Highest average revenue on record for a three-month period at $18.3 million.
- In Adelaide’s CBD, March 2021 saw hotels hit the highest average occupancy for a month since the pandemic began – at 72 per cent – the month’s highest average occupancy of any mainland Australian capital city.
- Data analysed by STR from 180 countries (covering 68,000 hotels), shows Adelaide ranked 15th highest hotel occupancy in the world among significant markets (i.e. markets with greater than 8,000 rooms) in March 2021. (The majority of the markets with higher occupancy than Adelaide, were in Florida, driven by relaxed COVID restrictions benefiting from ‘spring break’).
The fourth round of Great State Vouchers targeting accommodation will launch in late May for travel through the winter.
It will work like previous rounds for accommodation, with $50 off participating accommodation providers in regional South Australia and suburban Adelaide, and $100 off hotels in the CBD and North Adelaide. Consumers can expect to see new additions such as ‘mid-week treats’ or special deals to incentivise Sunday to Thursday night bookings in the CBD.
South Australian Tourism Commission chief executive Rodney Harrex said the agency had continued to listen and respond to industry and consumer feedback through each iteration of the voucher program.
“Each time we run the program, we’ve tweaked it to streamline the process for operators and make it easier for consumers. At the end of the day, we want people out exploring regions or heading into the city, spending money in hotels and restaurants, having a night or two away – it all drives the state’s visitor economy, and keeps people in jobs,” Mr Harrex said.
Opening its doors in March 2021, Hotel Indigo Adelaide Markets was part of the previous round of Great State Vouchers targeting accommodation and proved popular among voucher holders.
General Manager of Hotel Indigo Thomas Zinn said opening a new hotel and launching the Hotel Indigo brand in Australia during a pandemic “comes with extraordinary challenges”.
“Hotel Indigo was able to benefit from the last SATC voucher campaign for our opening month of March,” said Mr Zinn.
“We were able to boost our room nights for March particularly for leisure stays which supported our hotel opening phase greatly. At the same time, it incentivised locals and other visitors to get a first-hand experience of what the Hotel Indigo brand is all about.
“Heading into the traditionally quieter winter months, the travel industry in South Australia is doing it particularly tough. We hope that the next round of vouchers for the accommodation industry is going to support us throughout this difficult time of the year.”
More details about the new round of Great State Vouchers for accommodation will be released following the completion of an Expressions of Interest for operators to participate.