31/05/2020 | Steven Marshall MP | More Jobs

A new tourism campaign has launched today designed to tantalise the senses of South Australians and get them back out into the regions following a long period of travel restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Premier Steven Marshall said the $1.5 million ‘Welcome Back’ campaign signals the start of a major recovery phase for regional communities, some of which have endured not just the impact of the COVID-19 restrictions, but also drought and fires.

“The ‘Welcome Back’ campaign is all about getting behind our tourism regions and helping these local communities, businesses and families get back on their feet as quickly as possible,” he said.

Similar to the successful #BookThemOut campaign to help communities on Kangaroo Island and in the Adelaide Hills recover after last summer’s bushfires, the new “Welcome Back” message aims to get South Australians out and about, supporting South Australia.

Launched by the South Australian Tourism Commission, the campaign urges South Australians to explore their own backyards, spend time in our regions and in our city, and help rebuild the state’s domestic tourism sector.

“It’s great to know that since the easing of restrictions, there’s already been a positive response, with regions reporting huge amounts of web traffic and phone calls, and places in the Riverland, Yorke Peninsula, Barossa and Flinders Ranges being already booked out for the June long weekend,” he said.

Traffic to the SATC’s southaustralia.com website from intra-state visitors increased by nearly 82 per cent to over 200,000 visits in the two weeks following the announcement of the easing of restrictions on May 8, with direct leads to tourism operators increasing, up almost 30 per cent on the same time last year to 42,000.

“We have heard directly from accommodation providers that people are coming back. New data from Airbnb has shown a surge in domestic bookings, particularly in regional areas, with South Australia reporting a significant increase in same-state travel, with bookings up 77 per cent, compared with the same week last year,” said Premier Marshall.

“That’s great news for operators, and a massive show of support from fellow South Australians – we’ve got your back.”