Tourist vouchers scrapped as SATC tightens its belt


The Malinauskas government is ending the Great State Voucher scheme and cutting event sponsorship spending as the South Australian Tourism Commission seeks $17.6 million in savings over the next four years.

Tourism Minister Zoe Bettison told a parliamentary estimates committee on Tuesday that the tourist voucher scheme as well as a recently announced scheme subsidizing £10 flights for UK backpackers would not operate next financial year.

The South Australian Tourism Commission, like many other agencies not providing ‘frontline services’, has been asked to make savings to help the Malinauskas government fund its election commitments.

SATC has been asked to find $4.76 million in operational efficiencies over the next fiscal year and $17.6 million over the next four years.

“The Tourism Commission expects to realize these savings through the termination of funding that was allocated to one-time projects that took place in 2021-22 and will not continue in 2022-23, such as the Great Britain stimulus measures. State Voucher. [and] the working holiday campaign,” Bettison told the committee.

The Marshall government organized eight rounds of the Great State Voucher program which offered accommodation discounts of up to $100 for CBD hotels and $50 for regional accommodations in a bid to boost the tourism sector of the state affected by COVID.

Later rounds of the program also offered $200 vouchers for experiences and tours in South Australia.

The program is estimated to cost $9.75 million over 2021-22, according to state budget documents.

Bettison also said there will be “a reduction in event sponsorship funding for various events, and we will be implementing a number of corporate and operational efficiency services.”

SATC event grant expenditures will increase from $19 million in FY22 to $18.5 million in FY23, $12.5 million in FY24 and $7.5 million in FY25.

But Bettison insisted that cutting event sponsorship spending is not “where the majority of the savings are coming from.”

“While we’re talking about different events, we made a pretty big announcement during the election… of the additional $40 million over four years for the Major Events Fund, which is under the banner of the Prime Minister’s Department and Cabinet,” she said. said.

“This will also be available to develop local events and to expand our existing owned and managed events.”

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