Council targeting potential tourists

Following a recent tourism review, Northern Grampians Shire Council will investigate different methods for providing tourism services across the municipality.

Lois Nuske talks about attractions around Stawell to Allan and Bernadette Franzki of Melbourne, with their son Ian and granddaughters Bethany and Rosie.

Lois Nuske talks about attractions around Stawell to Allan and Bernadette Franzki of Melbourne, with their son Ian and granddaughters Bethany and Rosie.

The review is one of many being undertaken by council to ensure its services are delivering the best economic outcomes for the region.

Mayor, Cr Kevin Erwin said despite conflicting media reports, council had not made a decision to close its visitor information centres in Halls Gap, Stawell and St Arnaud.

"Council has made a commitment to review a number of services across the organisation. Tourism is just one of these," he said.

"The tourism review highlighted that the expectations of visitors are constantly changing and we need to look at all approaches to providing tourist information, including traditional, online and digital methods, with the view of increasing visitation to the region.

"While advancing technology will eventually replace traditional methods of tourist information throughout Australia, council has no immediate plans to close our visitor information centres which provide face-to-face advice and printed materials such as maps and brochures."

Cr Erwin said council would need to re-assess its resource allocation to ensure it continued to meet the needs of visitors and capture its share of the tourism market.

He said council had provided in principle support for Grampians Tourism's Digital Project, Grampians Online, a new online platform designed to meet all the booking and planning needs of people researching a holiday in the area.

"Research shows that 85 percent of consumers now complete their holiday research online prior to leaving home and then travel with web connected devices. This statistic is one that council cannot afford to ignore," he said.

"To achieve the best outcome for our tourism services, council needs to work with Grampians Tourism and other local government areas to deliver a regional digital project. Grampians Online provides the perfect opportunity to do this."

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