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This could be Australia’s next biggest tourist attraction

Move over Sydney Opera House, Great Ocean Road, and even you, cute koala


There’s a new tourist attraction in town, and it’s one whose appeal could outweigh even the most famous of Aussie sites.


A record 9 million international tourists visited Australia last year, and according to the ABC, tourism experts have pointed to a fall in the Aussie dollar as a major factor moving forward.   


Image Tourism Australia


"It's not a cheap place to visit, so any drop in the dollar is going to help," Tourism Transport Forum CEO Margy Osmond said.


"It may mean we see more people dispersing outside the major capitals and staying a bit longer."


While it can be hard to gauge the true impact of a low AUD on local tourism, Destination Gold Coast CEO Annaliese Battista said “the last time we saw any real impact from fluctuations in the Australian dollar was about seven or eight years ago”.


According to the ABC, Ms Battista said she wasn’t concerned about lower recent visitor numbers in her region, putting the trend down to a Commonwealth Games hangover.


"There are some patterns where people tend to stay away immediately before and during a big sporting event like that, but then you'll get a spike in visitation after the event ends," she said.


Meanwhile, despite the weaker dollar, Australians haven’t been deterred from travelling overseas themselves, with the latest ABS statistics showing international travel had increased over the past year.


But the TTF says currency fluctuations take a back seat to another factor influencing travel.


"It's all about the mortgage," Ms Osmond said.


"That's the thing that changes their mind in so many instances — that combined with the falling dollar will make it less attractive to go overseas."


What sort of effect, if any, does the currency have on your travel plans?


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Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 16 November 2018

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