Backpacker tax could lead to major IR reform

Instead of charging backpackers 32.5% tax, the federal government now propose charging them 17.5% from the first dollar overall – and hitting their arse on the way out with a $5 departure tax. Nick Xenophon has proposed that Australia’s unemployed may be better suited to pick fruit – and being that Xenophon’s crossbenchers and Pauline Hanson’s quintessentially regional constituents will benefit, the major parties are pricking up their ears. Continue reading

Tourism News Headlines


Regional airports need red tape cut for tourism

Entrepreneur and aviator Dick Smith has said that regional airports will continue to suffer unless red tape is cut allowing private jets and helicopters to more easily access the regions. Continue reading


Grey nomads turning ruined town into attraction

Photo: Stonemason Ron Johnson works a wall of an historic building in Farina, South Australia.
Ever fantasised about restoring a historic building? Well a bunch of grey nomads are spending a season of labour every year on restoring the outback town of Farina, South Australia. About halfway between Port Augusta SA and Birsdville QLD, the town has long been abandoned – but a meagre bakery income, two stonemasons, some elbow grease and a plan have gotten Farina to a stage where a museum of artefacts could open next year. Continue reading


Ciobo – a minister with tourism credentials

The new Minister for Trade, Investment and Tourism is someone who actually knows about the big business of tourism – he’s been the federal member for the Gold Coast since 2001 and is trained in economics – meaning the $190 fee asian tourists pay on entry could be on the chopping block. Continue reading


Indigenous help with northern bleaching observations

Photo: Mangrove bleaching. One of Australia’s most sparsely populated areas, the Gulf of Carpentaria, has indigenous rangers observing significant coral and mangrove death from ‘coral bleaching. Indigenous rangers are now working with scientists from multiple universities to make observations of coral bleaching across an extraordinarily-sized area. Continue reading


$190 fee to tourists must go: Osmond

“If you want less of something, you tax it more” – Tourism and Transport Forum chief Margy Osmond quotes Malcolm Turnbull when she says that high tourist visa costs and Australia’s $55 ‘holiday tax’ hinders tourism industry growth. Continue reading


Disney supports reef in huge promotion

One of the world’s biggest brands, Disney, is getting behind the Great Barrier Reef cause in their marketing of Finding Dory. Finding Dory promises to surpass Finding Nemo in the Top 10-grossing animated films of all time – and Disney have created entire education and collectable lines supporting the film. Continue reading


20,000 indigenous artefacts found in central Sydney

20,000 indigenous artefacts – including spearheads and cutting tools – have been found in the construction site of Sydney’s light rail. Continue reading


NT travel agency rort travels to Darwin

After a travel agent in Katherine, NT was caught rorting an NT government travel scheme last year, Darwin police have raided a branch of Helloworld in Darwin looking for similar data. The Katherine rorter has recently been found in court to have overcharged the government on 69 out of 88 invoices, resulting in a personal benefit of $40,514. Continue reading


Adelaide Fringe gets balance wrong for 2016

TTN: The Adelaide Fringe’s huge crowds are still turning up – but more for nights out partying and sight-seeing rather than to shows, leaving genuine ‘fringe’ artists (not mainstream/ up and coming) on the outer fringe of a fringe show. With over 40% of tickets being sold for smaller venues (as opposed to previous years’ 20% small-venue sales), event organisers concede that it’s the competition of over 1100 shows that has left some performers without sell-out crowds. Continue reading


Regional cabs run their own meter

Whilst the cab industry fights for its right to $300k licenses down south, cabbies in Katherine, NT are running their own show in the important tourism town. In a recent spot check of cabs by police, nine out of 12 cabs were issued with infringement notices for serious offences such as over-charging. In a town that can use all the transport help it can get, this is a PR disaster for Katherine tourism. Continue reading

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