In a statement released on Friday, Tourism Australia has affirmed that the majority of Australian tourism & events businesses are still operating and need visitors more than ever.
The tourism authority acknowledged the incredible strain the bushfires have put on many Australian communities in the past months, stressing the need for an influx of visitors to the regions to help locals recover.
“Whilst the emergency response to the bushfires and the safety of communities and visitors in affected areas continues to be the number one priority, we know that the majority of our most popular destinations have not been affected by the fires and they need our support to get people on planes now and booking ahead for next year,” the statement reads.
“Tourism Australia’s priority over the coming weeks is to ensure our vital tourism industry, which benefits so many individuals, communities and businesses right across the country, can continue to thrive.”
To help guide potential visitors, Tourism Australia has developed an online tool that shows travellers which areas have been affected by bushfires and which haven’t. The website has been developed in cooperation with State and Commonwealth governments and is updated daily.
“We are working to spread the message that the best way to help Australia’s tourism industry is to still visit, whilst at the same time providing factual information as to where the risk areas are at any given time. This as you know, can change from day to day.”
“Affected communities are already beginning to think about rebuilding and we are so grateful for the overwhelming support that’s pouring in from around the world to help them do so.”
If you’d like to support the recovery and management of the bushfires, there are a number of organisations across the country that are taking donations.
Australian Red Cross
NSW Rural Fire Service
Victoria Country Fire Authority
SA Country Fire Service