Politics

COVID restrictions all but scrapped for international tourists


International tourists are being urged to book a flight Down Under, as the federal government eases restrictions in a bid to return travel to pre-pandemic levels.

Nearly two years of border restrictions have crippled Australia’s once thriving tourism sector.

But the government hopes easing travel rules will entice more tourists to make the trip.

While international travellers will still need to be fully vaccinated, from April 17 they will no longer need to have a negative COVID test result to board a flight to Australia.

Health Minister Greg Hunt announced the rule would end along with the ban on cruise ships.

Meanwhile, Australia’s largest airline has launched a new campaign to showcase the country as a prime destination for international tourists.

The Qantas campaign features Australia’s iconic landscapes, while the country’s sporting and cultural stars sing “I Still Call Australia Home” with members of the Australian Girls Choir, National Boys Choir and the Gondwana Choir.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce says the Peter Allen classic will be the carrier’s new anthem.

“The full version of this advert is effectively a short film that highlights Australia’s stunning natural beauty and unique culture while celebrating the incredible resilience that has really shone through recently,” he said.

Help for travel agents

Trade Minister Dan Tehan on Friday announced new support for the tourism industry.

The government will provide $75.5 million for travel agents and tour arrangement service providers to continue to operate and rebook travel credits.

A further $60 million over three years will entice more visitors from new international markets, including additional support for the Business Events bid fund attracting major events to Australia.

-AAP





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