Sunshine Coast on snow

As the northern hemisphere shivers through one last blast of winter, Queensland’s reef and coastal experiences are being showcased to entice Europeans to book their next holiday.

‘Australia’s Nature Coast’, a partnership between the Sunshine Coast and the Fraser Coast, is the focus of a campaign in France and Germany to showcase the wonderful natural encounters, beautiful beaches, rainforest, lifestyle and ‘wow’ moments travellers can experience on the coast, including a full-page feature in ‘DIE WELT’, one of Germany’s leading newspapers, on the weekend.

Meanwhile in the UK, the Sunshine Coast has partnered with Tropical North Queensland to promote Great Barrier Reef and coastal holidays.

Visit Sunshine Coast also recently attended the annual Visit Pacific consumer travel event in Sweden to entice more Nordic visitors to region promoting attractive tactical offers.

The campaign activities are a partnership between Tourism and Events Queensland (TEQ), Visit Sunshine Coast and other partners.

TEQ Chief Executive Officer Leanne Coddington said it was a perfect time to be offering a Queensland holiday to Europeans and Brits.

“Inevitably during winter people dream of escaping the cold, and while our spectacular imagery is always a wonderful contrast at this time, our experience-approach takes the campaign to the next level, inviting travellers to enjoy and explore the truly unique offerings of Australia’s Nature Coast and iconic destinations,” Ms Coddington said.

“Germans in particular have such a strong affinity with nature, so a nature and adventure-based proposition is a unique selling point for this market,” she said.

“We’ve chosen to work with airline and retail partners on the campaign to convert wish-list-thinking to booked Queensland holidays.

“We still see European travellers so reliant on the traditional travel trade network for long haul travel, and these partners are vital in helping us to tell the stories of our unique experiences.

“Tourism on the Sunshine Coast is worth $2.2 billion with more than 3.7 million visitors including achieving record international visitation of 301,000 in the year ended December 2017.

“In particular the UK campaign seeks to reach first time visitors, aiming to grow the coast’s tourism industry even further.”

Visit Sunshine Coast CEO Simon Latchford said Queensland’s Sunshine Coast has timed promotion across Europe and the UK perfectly.

“Regions of Europe and the UK have been experiencing a deep freeze and sub-zero conditions, making the appeal of our sunshine, beach and wildlife experiences an even more attractive proposition.

“Working with key partner Tourism and Events Queensland, neighbouring regions, airlines and wholesalers really demonstrates the might of working together and how we can collectively sell the Sunshine Coast and beyond.

“Despite falls in the Euro and Pound against the Australian dollar since the start of 2016, we know the campaigns are working with the Sunshine Coast attracting 162,000 UK and European visitors; an increase of 6.8 per cent to the year ending December 2017.”

The campaign in Germany includes roadside billboards and infoscreens offering deals to visit Australia’s Nature Coast in partnership with Singapore Airlines and trade partner Explorer Fernreisen, whilst in France a digitalmarketing campaign with tour operator Australie a la Carte links to a dedicated French-language microsite featuring holiday packages and itineraries to explore the coastal trail.

The European campaign, worth $400,000AUD, is co-funded by TEQ, Visit Sunshine Coast, Tourism Noosa, Visit Gympie and Fraser Coast Tourism and Events as well as airline and tour operator partners, and builds on an editorial activation featuring Australia’s Nature Coast in leading German travel magazine ‘Reise and Preise’ earlier this year.

Brits will also see Sunshine Coast deals on offer in Flight Centre windows and read about the Sunshine Coast and Great Barrier Reef’s unique experiences in leading UK publications such as Lonely Planet and Wanderlust.

New digital assets have also been launched, including the first of a new Queensland video series featuring Flight Centre Experts sharing their top Queensland tips.

The UK campaign is jointly funded by TEQ, Visit Sunshine Coast, Tourism Noosa and Tourism Tropical North Queensland and is worth $200,000AUD.