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Australia’s $100 million-a-year domestic tourism industry slow to recover

Amidst a year of unprecedented consumer behaviour within the travel and tourism industry, Glow, a leading Australian-based consumer insights platform, has leveraged its quick-pace market research technology to support a continuously challenged local tourism economy.

The Victoria Tourism Industry Council is calling for support to the tourism industry as many businesses in the industry have “not been able to reactivate at the same pace or scale as other industries in Victoria”, as reported by VTIC. VTIC considers the tourism industry within Victoria to be “weakened” and demonstrating “the urgent need for continued support”.

Negative effects on domestic tourism have been further exacerbated throughout March. Amid the planned conclusion of the JobKeeper scheme on March 28, New South Wales currently sees the state battling heavy floods, creating a discouraging trilogy of disaster for tourism operators in NSW: fires, the pandemic, and floods.

The Age reports that the downturn of the industry has, predictably, been caused in large part by the continuous changing of restrictions: “Australian Tourism Industry Council executive director Simon Westaway said the threat of border closures was the biggest handbrake on the $100 million-a-year domestic tourism industry’s recovery”.

While the travel industry has been interrupted by snap lockdowns across Australia, such as recently occurred in Melbourne and Brisbane, tourism industry giants including airlines remain hopeful — with Qantas stating they foresee international travel resuming by October 2021, as reported by CNN

WIth a focus on real-time, up-to-date insights to assist in pivotal travel industry decisions, Glow’s market research capabilities are positioned to assist the tourism industry by offering quick, quality data for increased speed to insights — a critical element of market research when consumer preferences are changing daily, as a result of fluctuating restrictions and snap lockdowns across the country.

“We’ve seen that quick access to accurate real-time consumer sentiment plays a vital role in strategic planning for the tourism industry, especially in a time of continuous change,” states Tim Clover, CEO of Glow. “Our flexible research platform enables teams to gain a real-time, up-to-date understanding of current consumer sentiment towards travel — regionally, country-wide, or globally.”

“The expansion of Glow’s super-fast research tech was developed after travel businesses adapted the platform’s quick-pace primary research capabilities for the tourism market,” states Clover. My Travel Research, an Australian-based travel research agency, used the Glow platform in 2020 to carry out domestic and international travel studies.

My Travel Research deployed a survey to gather consumer sentiment on post-bushfire travel in early 2020, in a time wracked with much uncertainty, similar to what is occurring amidst the pandemic. The study gathered up-to-date data on how the bushfires affected travel intentions, and how related tourism campaigns are perceived, allowing for greater success in tourism planning.

In addition, My Travel Research carried out a study to gain a deep understanding of Australians’ perceptions of other countries. The study, which examined citizens’ views on personal heritage, country stereotypes, and qualities and values associated with each, offered great in-depth insight into the reasons behind Aussies’ international travel decisions as a basis for strategic travel agency decisions.

Glow’s research in the tourism space extends further. Amid restrictions, lockdowns, and border closures across Australia in late 2020 and early 2021, Glow conducted quick-pace studies to keep up with Australian sentiment towards domestic travel, discovering continuously shifting sentiment amid border closures, reopenings, and state travel incentive programs.

In October, Glow gathered insight into support for the overseas travel ban, and likelihood of traveling shortly after the ban is lifted. The survey found that 70 percent of Australians supported the international travel ban, and the majority were not eager to head overseas once the ban was to be lifted.

Later that month, Glow investigated Aussies’ intention to travel across state borders, in the wake of border closures and reopenings. The study found that driving to the destination was the top choice for upcoming domestic travel plans. Carolyn Childs, CEO of, found these results in line with current views of the industry at the time, stating, “New South Wales has been heavily promoting its road trip experience, both intrastate since early lifting of restrictions, and increasingly interstate. It is encouraging to see that focus rewarded.”

When multiple states offered travel incentives for residents to conduct tourism within their own state, Glow deployed a rapid pace survey that found awareness of such travel voucher programs was low, suggesting the program may not have achieved its intended impact. The rapid-pace speed to insights nature of the Glow platform allows tourism businesses to keep a finger on the pulse of current consumer sentiment amid continuous changes to tourism.

The Glow research platform generates the provision of global consumer sentiments, and the firm has skilled insights staff to facilitate the swift use of its platform. Real-time consumer opinion is set to become a cornerstone of the travel and tourism research process. With offices across Australia, UK, and Asia, and language translation capabilities in-platform, Glow’s tool offers flexibility to examine any market around the world.

With a tourism industry unlike one we’ve ever seen, Glow looks forward to assisting travel businesses with strategic planning amid changing consumer opinion.

To learn more about how to use the Glow platform contact:

Oscar Mora