Tourism Whitsunday CEO Tash Wheeler welcomed news of the border reopening. Picture: Laura Thomas
Tourism Whitsunday CEO Tash Wheeler welcomed news of the border reopening. Picture: Laura Thomas

‘Music to our ears’: Border news welcome for Whitsundays

THE border reopening has been described as “music to the ears” of tourism operators across the Whitsundays.

Queensland will reopen to NSW on December 1 with a decision to be made on Victoria tomorrow.

Tourism Whitsunday CEO Tash Wheeler welcomed the news, saying it would help struggling operators prepare for next year.

“It’s fantastic news,” she said.

“Particularly (for) our islands (that) are so reliant on NSW and Victoria, and Airlie Beach has a lot of bookings from these areas for Christmas and New Year.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the border reopening this morning. Picture: Josh Woning
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the border reopening this morning. Picture: Josh Woning

“It’s our biggest opportunity of the year to really try and bring in some base for our operators so they can start 2021 in a good strong position, or stronger than they would have.

“The news that the border has opened is just music to our ears.”

The Greater Sydney market has historically been the highest source of domestic visitation for the Whitsunday region outside of Queensland, followed by Victoria.

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Mrs Wheeler hoped that the December reopening would be a permanent move and that leaders would formulate a way to keep borders open over the coming months.

“We need a long-term plan of how we’re going to come out of COVID so that businesses aren’t losing entire state’s worth of people every time something changes,” she said.


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