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Brisbane emerges as top corporate holiday destination for 2024

Flight Centre’s Corporate Traveller reveals Brisbane is overtaking Melbourne and Sydney as a summer holiday destination for corporates & Bleisure travel trending strongly in Queensland

Australian corporates are heading further north this holiday season as they combine business with leisure, family and friends. Brisbane is on track to be the top destination in 2024, with 20 percent more bookings than last year’s top spot, Melbourne. 

The findings come from Corporate Traveller, the flagship SME division of Flight Centre Travel Group. The company compared air, car, rail and hotel bookings by its corporate customers to 35 of Australia’s major holiday hotspots (in the table below) from December 15 to January 26 in 2022 to 23 and 2023 to 24. 

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Capital cities attract the most holiday bookings, with Brisbane taking the top spot this Christmas

For the two periods analysed, Australia’s capital cities attracted more Christmas holiday bookings than bookings to regional holiday hotspots. The trend is likely due to it being the gateway to the Gold and Sunshine Coasts, as corporates look to combine CBD business with coastal holidays.

Glass House Mountains, Sunshine Coast – For Real campaign

Further, attendance at the last of corporate events for the year, and business travellers visiting nearby family or friends over Christmas is also contributing to the trend.

This coming holiday period, Sydney has already secured 15 percent of all bookings to the 35 destinations, Melbourne 16 percent and Brisbane 20 percent – making Brisbane Australia’s top Christmas holiday hotspot this year.

To date, Brisbane bookings have outpaced Melbourne’s by 20 percent and Sydney’s by 25 percent. In contrast, last year Melbourne was the most popular city for bookings, beating Sydney by 7 percent and Brisbane by 3 percent in bookings.  

Accor Brisbane Airport Pullman Hotel
Pullman Brisbane Airport Hotel. Image Supplied

NSW North coast and Queensland coast attract majority of regional holiday bookings

Overall, the NSW North Coast and the Queensland coast have attracted more business travellers than any other regional holiday hotspot that Corporate Traveller analysed, taking in 15 percent of all analysed bookings (including cities) in 2023, and 14 percent in 2024.

When cities are excluded, the NSW north coast and Queensland coast, combined, attracted 65 percent of those regional holiday bookings analysed this Christmas, and 59 percent last Christmas.

Executives travel off the beaten track

While Byron Bay is internationally known as a top holiday destination, this Christmas Broome in Western Australia has already secured triple the number of bookings of Ballina, NSW, after trending neck to neck with Ballina last Christmas. Coffs Harbour has also rushed ahead in 2023 to 2024, attracting 46 percent more bookings than Ballina to date. Last year, Coffs Harbour trailed closely behind Ballina. 

QT Newcastle

Newcastle remains the top NSW destination outside Sydney

Newcastle grew in popularity as a holiday destination over the two years. This upcoming holiday season, it has already attracted 124 percent more bookings than Ballina, 92 percent more than Coffs Harbour, and 137 percent more than Port Macquarie. Newcastle also dominated NSW’s regional destinations last holiday season, attracting 101 percent more bookings than Ballina, 101 percent more than Coffs Harbour and 132 percent more than Port Macquarie.

Tom Walley, Corporate Traveller’s Australian-based Global Managing Director, says: “There are plenty of places to visit within a short drive from our capital cities, so it makes sense that many corporate travellers will base themselves in the city where their business, family and friends are likely to be, while still enjoying the spoils of nearby beaches and mountains in their downtime.

Tom Walley is the Global Managing Director at Corporate Traveller Australia

Brisbane has long held a reputation of being the more relaxed capital, like a big country town, but it has a burgeoning population and a growing number of restaurants, cafes and cultural offerings. This, along with its exceptional weather compared with extended heatwaves in Sydney and high rainfall in Melbourne at the moment, has possibly steered more people toward Brisbane this holiday season.” 

Corporate Traveller analysed bookings to 35 holiday hotspots 
 from 15 Dec–26 Jan 2022/23 & 2023/24







Port Macquarie


Orange Regional


Coffs Harbour




Wagga Wagga 





Rottnest Island







Gold Coast 

Alice Springs 

Whitsunday Coast 






Hamilton Island 


Sunshine Coast





King Island 

Hervey Bay


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