Queenslanders plan for a domestic holiday

Holidaymakers are replacing international and interstate travel with a local getaway or road trip.

Uncertainty around interstate travelling, border restrictions and quarantining has forced many Queenslanders to plan a domestic holiday over the Christmas and New Year break. 

Australia’s comparison site Finder surveyed 1007 respondents and found 61% of Australians were planning a domestic getaway this year with 48% packing for a road trip, 21% booking a domestic flight and only 2% getting on a cruise. 

Finder Travel Expert Angus Kidman said it was good to see people making the most of their own backyard this year. 

"From beaches to camping spots, Australia has a lot to offer,” Mr Kidman said. 

“People who would usually jet off overseas are instead exploring their own country.

"There are some excellent deals to be had at the moment as domestic airlines, car rental companies and hotels attempt to make up for lost revenue.”

Unfortunately, the aviation industry is still struggling to rebuild despite offering deals for domestic travellers in the lead up to Christmas.  

Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) Media Lead and Corporate Communications Advisor Rachel Bronish said the stark impact of COVID-19 on Brisbane Airport was reflected in its passenger numbers. 

“While Brisbane Airport’s intrastate network is rebuilding slowly, and we are fortunate in
Queensland to have these routes helping our tourism industry keep going, domestic travel
remains significantly lower than normal,” Ms Bronish said. 

“Despite some reprieve with interstate borders beginning to open, our domestic passenger traffic is still down 73.6%. 

“To put this into context, the average number of daily passengers through our domestic terminal from 26 October to 1 November was 13,407. For the same period last year, it was 50,722.

“Uncertainty around border restrictions and quarantine has resulted in low consumer confidence.

“Until Queensland’s borders open to our two largest markets – Sydney and Melbourne – Brisbane Airport will only see limited increases in domestic travel in the leadup to Christmas.”

While the pandemic sparked a rush on recreational vehicle (RV) sales this year, with caravans and camper trailers becoming highly in demand around Queensland, RACQ members who have not bought their own don’t have to miss out on the popular holiday option.

Members get a 10% discount off Apollo motorhome rentals across  Australia, including from existing discounts.

Queensland Tourism Industry Council CEO Daniel Gschwind said holidaymakers were opting for a return to nature, particularly the state’s national parks, as they looked for an escape from the pressures on everyday life brought about by COVID-19 in 2020.

“The impact of the ‘COVID trauma’ is driving a greater focus on core values, the ‘essentials of life’, and appears to make us all yearn for a bit of peace and quiet,” Mr Gschwind said.

“What better place than a National Park to find just that.”

Apollo’s self-contained motorhomes are the perfect vehicle for getting away from crowds and exploring the natural beauty of Queensland.

For Club members who prefer to stay in less mobile accommodation there are myriad other hotel discounts on offer to help you make your next break one to remember.

These include reduced rates for accommodation ranging from budget to luxury across Queensland and throughout the country. 

You can then explore your destination by taking advantage of car rental discounts for members, including 15% off Thrifty’s daily rates.

Click here for more details.

Tips for travelling during COVID-19

  • Do not travel if you feel sick or have any symptoms of COVID-19, no matter how mild.
  • Maintain social distance as much as possible.
  • Avoid touching your face and wash your hands regularly. 
  • Sneeze or cough into a tissue or your elbow.
  • Go contactless wherever you can by booking and checking in online.
  • Regularly sanitise your car’s surfaces to prevent the spread of germs. 
  • Maintain good hygiene after stopping at petrol stations where you may have handled a fuel pump, tyre inflator or EFTPOS machine.
  • If you are camping, check what facilities/amenities will be available ahead of arriving to your destination as some may be closed due to COVID-19.