Blake to the future with the ‘Gift of Travel’

New campaign urges Aussies to bypass giving socks for surf lessons and walking tours

Tourism Australia has launched the second phase of its campaign encouraging Aussies to stay at home with Hamish Blake and Zoe Foster-Blake once again taking lead roles.

The ‘Gift of Travel’ centres around encouraging Australians to give more meaningful gifts this holiday season and in doing so, give back to tourism operators and communities who have been among the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tourism Australia managing director, Phillipa Harrison said last year, Australians spent, on average, $770 on gifts during the holiday season equating to $16 billion in total.

“If we can encourage people to spend just a fraction of that on travel instead it would be a multi-billion dollar boost for the tourism industry,” she said.

The pandemic has left people wanting to make up for lost time and giving a travel experience will help people do just that.

 “Whilst the uncertainty around state borders can make booking challenging, the wonderful thing about giving a travel or experience voucher is that they will be there ready for use when restrictions allow and people are ready to go.”

“We know from our research that there are high levels of pent-up tourism demand in Australia, so by giving the gift of travel, people can be sure they are giving a gift that people will want.

So, rather than giving socks give a surfing lesson or a walking tour.”

Tourism Australia chief marketing officer, Susan Coghill said December and January are traditionally the largest travelling months and this Summer that will be combined with strong pent-up demand for travel.

“The latest travel sentiment data shows the majority of Australians are either thinking or dreaming about their next holiday and now is the time to convert that into gift vouchers and actual holiday bookings,” Ms Coghill said.

“There is a travel gift for everyone at every price point, so for a last-minute gift that will last a lifetime, get inspired at”

Tourism Australia Ambassadors Hamish Blake and Zoe Foster Blake said giving the ‘Gift of Travel’ is a two-part win.

“You’re obviously giving someone that you love an incredible experience that they are never going to forget, and that is better than just another thing that you have bought off the internet which we have all done heaps of this year. Also, it’s a great way to help tourism operators and businesses,” the Blakes said.

The ‘Gift of Travel’ includes a new television campaign centred around Hamish and Zoe reaching out to well-known Australians for holiday gift ideas for their close friend, comedian Andy Lee.

The couple seek advice from around the country, consulting the Outback Wrangler Matt Wright in the Northern Territory, rugby league great Johnathan Thurston in Queensland, actor Hugh Sheridan and Elli Beer in South Australia and comedian Hannah Gadsby in Tasmania.

Mike Parker-Brown

Mike Parker-Brown is a UK-trained and qualified journalist and an award-winning travel communicator with more than 30 years experience. Since 2002, Mike has worked as a freelance writer and PR consultant providing his services to major organisations in Australia and internationally in the tourism, aviation, hospitality, recruitment and export marketing sectors.

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