Mayor Amanda Findley has congratulated the Visitor Services team at Shoalhaven City Council for winning sliver at the 2019 NSW Tourism Awards which were held at the Four Seasons, Sydney on Thursday 14th November.
“This award is testament to our hard-working and passionate staff in our Visitor Centres in Nowra and Ulladulla, and Council’s Tourism Team for taking a modern approach to visitor servicing over the past 4-5 years.”
“The accolade extends to our friendly locals who are part of our ‘Volunteer Ambassador’ Program, and our 11 business partnerships throughout the region who carry visitor information across ‘satellite centres’.”
“Celebration of local visitor services is paired with record-breaking industry figures released from Tourism Research Australia year to date June 2019*. The recent survey shows that visitors are staying longer and spending more, with only a modest increase in total visitor growth.”
“Our Visitor Services team consistently achieves fantastic customer services reviews across online and mystery shopper platforms. "
"Not only are the staff servicing visitors and locals, but they play a vital role in business development for tourism businesses in the Shoalhaven, helping them to grow and connect with a whole world of opportunities, including generating income from bookings.”
“Not only can visitors find our friendly staff in modern buildings with cafes and accessible facilities, but also out in region in the mobile visitor services van during peak season. A diverse array of local artisan and culinary products are available at our visitor centres, and we encourage people to buy local this Christmas and grab one of the popular hampers on offer.”
“It’s little wonder our visitor economy continues to grow every year, now to an estimated $934 million in annual spend, spread evenly across the year”.
" I would also like to congratulate our local operators who also had success on the night including, Cupitt Winery, Brewery, Fromagerie and Kitchen for Best in Food and Tourism, Bangalay Luxury Villas for Bronze in Best New Tourism Product, and finalists Mt Hay Retreat and South Coast Nannies."
More information here: www.nswtourismawards.com/Winners-and-Finalists/2019-Winners
*Visitor volume data extracted from Tourism Research Australia; National Visitor Survey & International Visitor Survey Year ending June 2019. Spend is modelled visitor expenditure (Tourism Research Australia). All data is subject to sample survey error and/or modelling assumptions.
In recent years, Shoalhaven City Council has undertaken a review of Visitor Services, taking on board industry research that suggested changing visitor markets and expectations require a new approach. Recommendations included the move away from stand alone centres, and an integration with digital technologies. Shoalhaven City Council has listened to the needs of modern travellers and responded with innovative solutions resulting in silver award. Visitor Services now co-habit with the Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre and the Ulladulla Library, have mobile visitor services that go out to where the visitors are during peak periods, have created and built up a team of knowledgeable locals as Volunteer Ambassadors, and have a number of businesses on board as Satellite Visitor Centres in the ‘Ask Me I’m Local’ program. Visitor Centres Australia wide have faced the challenge of having to step up to changes in Visitor demographics, digital technology and our team has done a fantastic job adapting and up-skilling to co-habitation with other facilities.
The Visitor Information category included strong competitors from regional NSW, Bathurst, Mudgee, Orange, Dubbo and Albury, all battling for gold and the honour to represent the state at the QANTAS Australia Tourism Awards in Canberra next year.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Web | www.shoalhaven.com.au
Facebook | https://www.facebook.com/visitshoalhaven
Twitter | https://twitter.com/visitshoalhaven
Instagram | @visitshoalhaven
Hashtags | #unspoilt #shoalhaven #100beachchallenge