Update from Visit Sunshine Coast                                                     View this email in your browser

In the media: PR events + news

Last night the Sunshine Coast shone on prime-time television with Channel 10’s The Amazing Race airing an episode filmed in the region. The episode saw contestants visit the Glass House Mountains, Montville's cuckoo clock shop, Maleny Botanic Gardens and Bird World and a ginger farm. VSC worked with The Amazing Race producers to support the Sunshine Coast episode.

On Friday, VSC’s PR team travelled to Sydney to host a targeted media event with top travel and hospitality media. The theme of the event was ‘What’s New on the Sunshine Coast in 2021’, and more than 25 journalists and editors from publications such as Australian Traveller, Escape and Gourmet Traveller were in attendance. The event is a fantastic way to drive media coverage for the Sunshine Coast into the coming year.


Marketing wrap: Submit deals

VSC invites members to submit their deals for FREE to be promoted on our Visit Sunshine Coast and Sunshine Coast For Real websites. Deals can be valid from now until 1 July 2021, submit them for free here.

In a targeted campaign with media partner We Are Explorers, VSC is inviting keen photographers to submit their most ‘For real’ photo moment to go in the running to win a trip to the Sunshine Coast and explore the region for themselves, camera in hand. The money can’t buy experience will invite the winning photographer and three of their friends to the region for five nights to explore all the Sunshine Coast has to offer and capture it on film. Their content will then be showcased across VSC’s and We are Explorers’ channels, inspiring travellers to book their own Sunshine Coast escape. More here.

The Sunshine Coast’s Hot 100!


The Sunshine Coast has an incredible depth and breadth of experiences,  so many in fact that VSC has partnered with local radio station Hot 91 to compile the ultimate list of things to do on the Sunshine Coast - the Hot 100. The local campaign encourages tourism operators and Sunshine Coast locals to nominate their favourite thing to do on the Sunshine Coast. Those who nominate will go in the draw to win the ‘Sunshine Coast Golden Ticket’ - a whole year of vouchers and experiences valued at over $10,000. Nominate your business now!

Delegates descend on Coast

Last week VSC hosted a trade display to showcase the Sunshine Coast region to delegates attending the Institute of Professional Works Engineers Australia – Queensland Branch (IPWEAQ) conference at The Events Centre, Caloundra. The conference program allowed the participants to get a real sense of what Caloundra has on offer, with delegates hosted at various accommodation in Caloundra, and the Queensland Air Museum and Caloundra RSL used for off-site functions. 

In case you missed it, Tourism Australia has launched an ‘Event Here This Year’ campaign to support the recovery of Australia’s business events industry.

Trade & International Update

VSC and The Mary Valley Rattler recently participated in Tourism Australia’s Online Marketplace Japan, meeting with more than 35 key travel trade contacts with the purpose of maintaining relationships, identifying future opportunities and educating trade on the Sunshine Coast region and experiences.

VSC also attended Aspect Tourism’s Reunion Tour in Brisbane, meeting with Australian based inbound, wholesale and online travel agent trade partners. There is the opportunity to participate in Aspect Tourism’s Roadshow in Sydney and Melbourne on 18 & 19 March, for more, email

You’re invited! Caloundra Beach Party networking night

Networking is all about how you work a room, unless, of course, it’s on a beach. And this month VSC is doing just that, joining forces with the Caloundra Chamber of Commerce to hold a networking event - Sunshine Coast-style - on Bulcock Beach! The event will be held on Wednesday, 24 March from 5:30-7:30pm. Members are invited to come together for an evening of networking, canapes and sunset drinks, the picturesque coastline providing the perfect backdrop for this soiree with a twist. Tickets cost $25 for members or $35 for non-member (plus GST), secure your place now!

Member opportunities

Access FREE one-on-one coaching
Queensland Tourism Industry Council (QTIC) is offering eligible businesses up to seven FREE one-on-one coaching sessions through their COVID-19, Restarting, Transitioning and Resilience program. Learn more here.
Hotel grants to reduce energy use
The Federal Government recently announced a new $10 million Hotel Energy Uplift Program for energy-saving projects for small and medium hotels, motels and serviced apartments with up to 99 rooms. Applications opened 24 February and close 1 April 2021. Grants of $10,000 to $25,000 are available, with projects to be completed by 30 June 2022. More here.

Google training for tourism businesses
Tourism businesses are being invited to Grow with Google OnAir Australia: a free three-part online event series designed to help small to medium sized businesses show up and stand out online. Focused on the travel industry, the series will discuss industry trends, insights and examples of how travel businesses can grow using digital marketing. The series will cover how to create and manage a Business Profile on Google, how to grow brand awareness using Google Ads; and how to turn data into actionable insights with Google Analytics. Register online here. Sessions will stream at 2:00pm AEDT on 11, 18 and 25 March 2021.
Update your ATDW listing
VSC members are encouraged to review and update if necessary your Australian Tourism Data Warehouse (ATDW) listing. This listing is shared across the VSC website, and with a new website in the works, it’s important to make your business shine. If you are not an ATDW member, membership is free for 24 months. To take up the offer, simply visit ATDW Online and click Register Now in the top right corner.

New Check In QLD app launched


The Queensland Government has launched a new, free, check-in app - Check in Qld. By using the app businesses will not need to manually collect or manage the information. The data entered into each customer’s app will be stored securely by the Queensland Government when they check in and will help to ensure it is readily available to contact tracers if required. It is not mandatory to use the Check In Qld app however all hospitality businesses must continue to collect and store contact details electronically. Learn more here.

$40m Indigenous Tourism fund


The Federal Government has announced a new $40 million Indigenous Tourism Fund. The fund provides support for Indigenous tourism through a comprehensive package of business support and grants, and was developed in consultation with the Indigenous tourism sector and includes business support and grants for Indigenous-owned tourism businesses. The fund will deliver complementary programs to grow the size and number of Indigenous owned tourism businesses across Australia. Find out more here.

Tourism news in brief

Update to border restrictions
Queensland has reopened to Greater Melbourne from 1am on Saturday, 27 February. Currently, there are no declared COVID-19 hotpots and domestic travellers are not required to complete a Queensland Border Declaration Pass prior to entering Queensland. Stay up to date with Queensland Health directions here.
ATE is back!
Australia’s largest tourism trade event, the Australian Tourism Exchange, will be staged in 2021 under a new format. ATE Live will be held in-person at the ICC Sydney from 6-9 June 2021, immediately followed by ATE Online from 10-17 June. More here.
Vollies out & about
VSC Visitor Information Centre Volunteers will get out and about this week, visiting new VSC members White Ridge Farm on a famil. The volunteers will also receive their new For real branded t-shirts this week.
Olympic Games take a step forward
The International Olympic Committee has announced Brisbane as the preferred host for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games. More here.

NEW! Gin Distillery at Eumundi


The Imperial Hotel Eumundi has opened the doors of the boutique Eumundi Distillers, launching their new Folktale Gin label. The small batch gins are crafted on-site, and include the Folktale Eumundi Gin and Folktale Navy Strength Eumundi Gin.

What's on! Leisure events
6 March
Lime Cordiale
NightQuarter, Birtinya
8 March
International Women's Day at Australia Zoo
Australia Zoo
8 March
International Women's Day Lunch
Malt Shovel Taphouse, Birtinya
11-13 March
Noosa Alive! Reignite 2021
Various Locations
12-14 March
Noosa Eat & Drink Autumn Fare
Various Locations
27 March 
People Plates & Places Sunset Canapes
Glass House Ginger, Glass House Mountains
12-14 March
Mooloolaba Triathlon
Mooloolaba Beach
13 March
Australian Open Water Swimming Championships
Lake Kawana
21 March 
Mooloolaba Mile Ocean Swim
Mooloolaba Beach, Mooloolaba
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