Tag Archives: Tourism Australia

V Australia..About time?

Let the Pacific war begin

Let the Pacific war begin

V Australia in their opening up of the Pacific Routes from a monopoly which will have the greatest impact on Australian Aviation since Virgin Blue created the lower prices that stayed around for more than a few months (Impulse, Compass) , and will give Tourism Australia finally a reason to smile, Protectionism of this immensely profitable route will be a real head holding time for Qantas at Mascot, but the reality is Qantas has been a real thorn in the side of Australian Tourism in its approach of profitability on the Pacific Routes both ways, and shows that overly protecting a national Icon can really hurt the the very thing it upholds.

I was far more expensive to fly to Los Angeles and San Francisco than to go to London or Paris, with these gateway costs so high, a return fare to New York was astronomical, it was cheaper to get a around the world ticket than have a return fare to NYC, or fly to London and go across the Atlantic then return was the same price, in other words it was ridiculous.

Qantas has held the country to ransom and knew what it was doing, and the Politicians in Canberra are to take most of the blame in letting the Airline do so. Tourism Australia should have also banged it’s drum far louder than it did and showed more in its mettle in doing what was right and not what monopoly’s can get away with, but Australia has a history of such head in the sand approach, its Two Airline agreement reigned for years until it was finally buried.. again to the benefit of Qantas but not so to Ansett which went south, but since the demise of the policy the local Australian Aviation has thrived like no other with excellent LCC carriers and good fares, And Qantas even benefited too as Jetstar has been a success they could only dream of..

So why get in such a lava over all of this, well not only did Australians pay way over barrier than what they should like in the Two Airline Policy days, but In that it also made Australia a very expensive country to visit, it is far enough away from prime travel markets as it is, but this was keeping arrivals at far lower levels than they should have been and certainly for years and years this has cost Australian Tourism millions and millions in lost revenue to give Qantas a few extra bucks in the bank, in fact Qantas should apologise for its behaviour and give the Australian Traveller a better deal to make up for all its callousness and greed.

Qantas finally only when forced has the Airline has finally dropped its prices from Aus$ 2000 + to around $1200.00 return to counter V Australia’s prices to date of average $1199.00,(both include taxes) that is in some cases a $850.00 drop (or Profit which ever way you look at it), that is a big drop by any Airline standards, but the benefits for the country will now certainly be apparent, but is it a little too late, today with the economic crisis going at full speed the Americans don’t anymore have the spare cash to pop downunder, one benefit though is the exchange rate is well balanced in the USofA’s favour making Australia an excellent value destination, and it almost always tops the most “I want to go there” lists, But for Australians its a bugger of a bad deal, offset only by the cheaper fare.

Qantas has another problem is the 777’s V Australia is using is very competitive on the routes, only the newly minted A380 Airbus’s came just in time to save the day in efficiency and high load factors, Virgin’s product is usually very good too, there are always accolades on their service and the niceys they throw around, if Qantas only had their 747.400’s still running the line, Qantas would have had a small disaster on their hands, old equipment, old service, expensive to run over the same distance, the Airline would have lost money on every takeoff from Mascot if they had matched the new prices, the only saving grace would have been lower fuel costs, but even that would have helped V Australia more than Qantas..

LA – Sydney is first on the 27th February, Followed by LA-Brisbane April 8th, LA-Melbourne Follows in September, worse for Qantas is the Sydney – Johannesburg SA routes have also been applied for, another cash cow gone, so is all of this fair to Qantas?

The answer is no, they should have rationalised the routes years ago, they have to do it now because they simply have too, if the fares had been fair there would have been no competition needed to show the discrepancy of the high fares people have been paying, Qantas will of course state this or that reason of why the fare were slated so high, but the real reason is two fold, inefficient equipment and good profit, now they will be well behind the ball mostly on the Aus-SA route, with the Boeing 787 coming in sometime in the never never.

There is no doubt it will be a tough year for the boys at Mascot, but for everyone else and mostly for the country it should give V Australia a helping hand in doing something Qantas should have done years ago, give the country and its tourism industry a fair go price wise to one of the worlds largest travel markets, so …good onya mate!


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Australia….a great big promised land of cross promotion

Australia…The movie is just about to be released (Nov 26) on to an expectant audience, Now I hear you rattling around saying, this is a travel blog, why don’t you write about this in newbluefilm, well the problem is I am not sure really what sort of deal this is, there has never been a shortage of funding for films to push a little about a product or product placement, Star Wars created an empire of not marauding killers roaming a galaxy far, far away but for interstellar profits from toys and other merchandising in creating a hype of a product that was in this case the film itself, in other words each promotes the other, and pays for the film to be made, its called cross promotion.

The poster wants to promote Australia the movie as the next Gone with the Wind, Aussie Style, but as a large sum has come from the Australian Tourist Board then your wanting to get something back for your tourist dollar, and as the tie-in movie ads are out, they don’t look that much different than the big screen epic in style and delivery….and its here I have a problem.

The general idea is to en-trance people to come here (Australia), see the sights, have a great experience, and mostly leave behind lots of your tourist dollars, but for years I have had a big problem with the general perception of Australian advertising mostly for eyes overseas.
The last big hugely successful advertising campaign for Australia was unfortunately with a bridge painter, Paul Hogan was a genuinely funny comedian that made the only commercial Australian worldwide hit, Crocodile Dundee in 1986, so “throw another shrimp on the barbi” was a promotion that tied in with Hogan’s persona and greatness was born, and the tourist dollars rolled in, so then every day since that marketing dream, Australian Tourism has replicated it over and over dismally, until the final act of the last campaign of “Where the bloody hell are you!”, that said more about the Australian Tourism body than about its product, so never short of a good idea, they then went back to basics and funded to the tune of $51 million another major motion picture, in other words… did the same bloody thing again…

I have no problem at all in a film promoting a country, James Bond films are just that, in fact most films are or placed delicately to show off their environments, but Australia is a bit of a doubter, yes it shows off our incredible landscape, top end, Kimberley ranges, wide open spaces and big, big Australia, great, yes brilliant, but……

First the film is set in 1941, and that is sixty seven years ago, not a great promotion for an upandcoming upstart of a country like Aussieland, second, most promotional material shown means that if you come here for a jolly good time, it consists of you, alone on a dusty red deserted outback road, with just a small dusty covered Kangaroo for company, and except for a few whitefellas, the only people you will meet will be aboriginal children and lost bushwalkers doing dreamtiming…or tracking..be stuck up a tree or alone in a large billabong (pool of water), miles and miles from anywhere, yes you will find yourself, because only you will be out there……alone!

…and dirty….and thirsty….and tired….and hot….and smelly…and hours and hours of dusty travelling boredom and who wants that!

Not me, I want comfort, soft bed, nice pool, cool drinks, mega shopping, beaches, great food, great wine, five star comfort, a ride on a rollercoaster, I’m on holiday for Christ’s sake, not working for a mining company, I want to get away from pain, and yet over and over again Tourism Australia want to plonk you outback in the never, never land where nobody goes except mining engineers go to get away from the wife.

And still they persist from Priscilla, Queen of the desert to almost anything made on film in Australia is shot in bloody nowhere, or scares you to dreamtime nightmares horrors like Wolf Creek or Rogue a killer croc, stranded eons away from anywhere, facing a lonely road death, any promotional film sent out by Tourism Australia or Qantas is shot in nowheresville, deadend Australia………are you surprised nobody is coming here…I’m not!

The few that do come, are really surprised that when you arrive at the airport within a shopping centre in Australia, there are biofuel taxis, not Hugh Jackman and a horse and carriage, and we do have otherĀ  mega shopping centres as well, good ones and that our restaurants are magnificent, and you can sit back and relax..cradle a drink while overlooking a great white beach or harbour view, you may argue that “well I can get that at home”, well no, it is still a different environment, Australia is different, the atmosphere is different, food is different, shopping is different, the whole experience is very different and that should be Tourism Australia’s message, same but very different, and most of all so are the people..

Australians are so laid back they are horizontal, they love their cruisy, long lunch, have another wine and look at that amazing view lifestyle, they love their sport (a little too much), outdoorsy, treking, beachgoing, boating, shopping, they work hard but they play even harder, and Australia is usually cheap to eat, stay and be merry, only problem is the long distance flight to get here, but once here, its hard to want to go home, and most who do come think of nothing of coming back again and again.

Its not all bad with a head in the sand attitude, Queensland Tourism have done a better job than most, Their “Beautiful One Day, Perfect the Next”, ad was a winner, and backed up with the right lifestyle visuals, “Very Gold Coast”, was a interpretation of the iPod generation Adverts, and that worked very well too, funny thing is Tourism Australia always leaves Queensland out of national campaigns, maybe they think Queensland Tourism doesn’t think they need any help or they loath them, so the market that should see them don’t…the important overseas market.

Every country has its cultural travel icon, “Come see me”, animals abound, China’s Panda, Canada’s Bears, Africa’s Elephants, lions, zebra and pink flamingo’s…….Australia its killer Crocs or Sharks that eat you whole, red back spiders “one bite and you’re dead”…….snakes…..lots of deadly snakes, even Indiana Jones hated snakes, am I getting my point across..

if you go to Australia you will die a lonely painful death…

Film’s in general have a shelf life of seven weeks, yes it is world wide exposure, but basically after two weeks your off the top spot and on the downward spiral, another blimp of life comes when the DVD is released, but then its soon in the discount bin, my second point is $51 million is a waste of money, it works out about a million dollars a day, yes invest in a film, but don’t throw the whole outhouse in on an advert with a cute aborigianal boy speading sawdust and most of the advert showing the dark streets of New York and not Australia…

Australia deserves better…..much better, $51 Million dollars better…..it is a great place to come and relax, shop, swim, see great vistas, in other words to have a great holiday, we need to sell that….more than a sixty seven year old film.

..have a good one…………(if you visit Australia you find out the meaning of the quote)

Australia Review: See newblueflim