Restaurants and cafes in downtown Melbourne and Sydney are the subject of new hospitality voucher programs designed to boost trade in areas still suffering from low levels of foot traffic due to the pandemic.
The State Government of New South Wales and the City of Melbourne have announced their support for hotel businesses in or near the central business district. In New South Wales, residents will receive four $ 25 vouchers to spend on food and entertainment, while residents of the Victorian era will be able to claim a 20% discount on their restaurant or cafe bill.
New South Wales Bonds
The $ 50 million Thank God It’s Friday program will provide 500,000 residents with vouchers to spend on Friday in Sydney’s CBD. Similar to the Dine and Discover program, residents will be able to download four $ 25 vouchers to use for dining and entertainment experiences.
Businesses wishing to participate in the program, which is scheduled to begin in the summer, must be physically located in the 2000 postcode and register through Service NSW to accept vouchers and receive discounts.
Announcing the vouchers on Friday, NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the targeted program aimed to make “Fridays fantastic and fun” and help CBD businesses that have been “hardest hit by COVID” due to ” a reduction in the number of workers and the absence of foreign tourists.
In April, the NSW government recorded 11,000 short-term arrivals to the state, a 96% drop from pre-pandemic averages of around 234,000 per month.
The quiet streets of the CBD are not unique to Sydney, with Melbourne’s new catering initiative also seeking to increase spending at centrally located hotel businesses.
Melbourne Dining Discounts
In partnership with the Victorian government, the city of Melbourne is spending $ 8.4 million to bring people back to the city and help struggling hotel businesses.
Diners spending between $ 50 and $ 500 at restaurants, cafes and bars in Melbourne can claim a 20% discount on their total food and drink bill. The rebate will be paid to their bank account within five business days of the request being approved.
The offer, which launched last week, will be available on a first come, first served basis while funds are used up.
The discount is available throughout the Melbourne City Municipality which includes Southbank, Chinatown, Lygon Street, Docklands, North Melbourne and Kensington.
Unlike the NSW program, businesses do not need to register. However, they must provide customers with receipts which they then upload to the “Melbourne Money” website.