27 August 2009

Travel Australia: new tourism message to be launched

Australia has launched a multi-million dollar bid this week to rebrand itself as more than a country of beautiful beaches and bronzed bodies after a number of years of unsuccessful tourism campaigns.

Australia ETA Visa

Australia tourism is about to be rebranded in a new campaign. To visit Australia you will need to have an ETA Visa.

Last year a campaign tried to cash in on the appeal of the country through the epic 2008 movie Australia, which failed to set the box office alight. Recent offical tourism figures this year show overseas visitor numbers down two per cent.

The controversial AU$180 million "Where the Bloody Hell Are You?" 2006 tourism campaign was originally deemed too offensive to be screened in some countries and largely failed in Asia.

Trade Minister Simon Crean said the government would spend AU$20 million dollars  to capture the "essence of Australia" as a trade, education and investment destination in Asia.

"We are much more than a nation of great people and great places. We have won 10 Nobel Prizes and we are a nation bursting with creativity and ingenuity," Crean told AFP.

Australia's most successful tourism promotion was a 1980s campaign featuring Crocodile Dundee star Paul Hogan telling tourists he would "put another shrimp on the barbie" for them, although Austrialians actually refer to the small crustaceans as prawns.

But Crean said Australia needed a brand that went beyond the familiar beach-goer image and promoted Australia as a "clean-energy" food bowl for South-East Asia.

It is a market Crean said presented huge economic opportunities.

"As these economies grow, and they will be the growth economies of the next decade, their living standards will increase," Crean said.

"Their demands for energy and for food will increase. But so, too, will their demand for infrastructure and services.

"This is the creative space in which Australia can play."

He denied Australia's image had been damaged by the previous campaign or recent diplomatic tensions with China.

The government will open applications for the four-year campaign to advertising agencies in the next fortnight. The rebranding will be locally released in February, with the international launch to take place next May at Shanghai's Expo 2010.

To visit Australia for tourism purposes, unless you have an Australian or New Zealand passport, you need to obtain an Australian tourist visa or ETA visa. This Australia visa can be quickly applied for online, and electronically attached to your passport so that you are ready to go in minutes.

The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their Australia visa applications. 

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