Sunshine Coast mounts push for more Canadian tourists

The Sunshine Coast has played host to 17 travel agents from Canada this week.

Coordinated by Tourism and Events Queensland in conjunction with Visit Sunshine Coast, the group from Goway and Maritime agencies will spend a whirlwind three days across the region from 27-30 March visiting Fraser Island, Noosa and Caloundra.

Bill James of Maritime Travel in Calgary is excited by the opportunity to see the area first-hand.

“My first impression of the Sunshine Coast is a very relaxing atmosphere and down-to-earth friendly people. This is definitely something that will appeal to our clients and what they are seeking from their Aussie holiday.”

The visit follows a sales drive run by Goway Travel with Visit Sunshine Coast during the peak booking season from December last year and finishing this month. The campaign aimed to encourage first time travelers to go beyond the traditional Sydney and Reef and explore the Sunshine Coast and also targeted previous visitors to return to Australia.

CEO of Visit Sunshine Coast Simon Latchford said the unprecedented growth and number of Canadian tourists arriving in a single year was showing no sign of slowing down in 2017.

“The direct air services between Canada and Brisbane, has really injected a flow of new visitors into Queensland and we have benefited due to our proximity to the capital city. There is also connecting services through New Zealand to Brisbane and seasonal services with Air New Zealand to the Sunshine Coast providing more opportunities and interest in our destination.

“On the back of our recent campaign, it is marvelous to welcome such a large group of Canadian Branch Managers and Consultants to see what we can offer. If an agent has experienced it for themselves then we know they are more likely to confidently sell our destination.

“We not only thank Tourism and Events Queensland for providing this opportunity for our region but other partners such as Tourism Noosa and Caloundra Chamber of Commerce for assisting us to host the agents,” added Mr Latchford.

The International Visitor Statistics released earlier this month by Tourism Research Australia showed the US including Canada continuing to lead other inbound market growth with a 48.5% increase in visitors totaling 22,000 arrivals in 2016.

About Goway

Goway Travel was established in 1970 and specialises in long-haul travel (South Pacific, Asia, Africa, Latin America and Around the World) and is North America's largest single producer of travelers to the South Pacific, Middle East and Latin America. Goway has reservation centres in Toronto, Vancouver, Sydney and Los Angeles and is a longtime member of ACTA (The Association of Canadian Travel Agents) in Canada and USTOA (United States Tour Operators Association) and ASTA (The American Society of Travel Agents) and their prestigious Tour Operator Program (TOP) in the USA.

Maritime Travel have 110 locations across Canada and are preferred with Goway. The Agency is a proven seller and supporter of long haul travel, as indicated by their preferred status with Goway. All agents participating on this visit are required to register/be registered with Tourism Australia's Aussie Specialist program prior to joining the trip.