QHA Accommodation Division &
Tourism Accommodation Australia (TAA)
Tourism is an important economic driver of the Australian economy contributing in excess of $38.9 billion in gross domestic product, $22.4 billion in exports and employing 482,800 working Australians.
The accommodation sector of the tourism industry is a key contributor to the net economic benefit of tourism to the Australian economy. Tourism in Queensland is the state’s second largest industry and the hotel sector is often referred to as the ‘backbone’ of the State’s tourism industry.
The QHA Accommodation Division, along with Tourism Accommodation Australia (TAA), provides professional specialist advice and services to its members whose primary source of business is the provision of accommodation. The success of their business depends on their ability to adapt to its changing lifecycle. Understanding where their business fits in the lifecycle will help anticipate upcoming challenges and make the most appropriate business decisions.
A key goal of the Accommodation Division and TAA is to support accommodation providers who are members of the association in a range of legislative and commercial issues.
The QHA Accommodation Division and TAA specifically deals with the following types of comprehensive issues including:
- Tourism legislation, promotion and funding at both the state and national levels
- Assisting members to improve occupancy and yield
- Building codes, including building fire and safety legislation
- Disability discrimination and other access legislation
- Taxation issues
- Various local government policies, especially in relation to rates and zoning
- Provides a strong and united industry voice to the media on all issues that affect accommodation hotels
- Risk management
- Airline industry regulation and airport services
- Access Industry Grants Programs and tourism funding
- Staff and tourist visa requirements and
- A range of issues which impact on tourism and accommodation providers such as public transport, infrastructure and events management.
The Division keeps a “watchful eye” on all of these issues and is well equipped to respond in a timely manner if anything looks like causing a negative impact on the members. This response may include lobbying government, seeking support from other interested parties and preparing submissions outlining the industry’s concerns.
In many cases, members will be unaware of the work that is being undertaken because issues are addressed in their infancy before they cause disruption to their industry. In other cases, issues will be aired publicly and comment sought. In some of these cases, the QHA will contact members to advise them of the proposals and seek their comment and input into the preparation of a response. Through member consultation, the Division can ensure that the needs of the accommodation members are considered, whether operating on the coastal fringe of the state, metropolitan area or outback Queensland.
Due to the fact that many of the issues that impact on Accommodation Division members are actually the responsibility of Federal Government portfolios, the QHA Accommodation Division has close links to the TAA. Together, these two groups ensure that the national issues are addressed at the appropriate level and that the views of accommodation providers are heard by Government. The TAA meets quarterly to determine industry policy positions on issues that are of importance to Accommodation Division members.
At the state and national levels, the QHA and TAA represents members and works closely with a range of forums and tourism bodies to ensure the Australian tourism industry is protected, where possible, from the negative impacts of general world instability and security awareness. It also maintains close relationships with relevant state government departments, convention centres, airlines and other industry partners. As a whole, the industry has been highly successful in recent years in convincing government of the importance of tourism to the state and national economies.
Tourism, whether business or leisure based, is integral to the hospitality industry in Queensland. Fifteen million people travel to Queensland each year and together, spend 12.5 million nights in the state’s many quality accommodation houses. This figure is growing steadily as Queensland increases it’s share of the Australian tourism market, which itself is on the increase.
Tourism in Queensland is made up of both domestic and international travellers and includes both business and recreational travel. As such, the Queensland tourism industry features many separate and distinct markets. The mix of tourists on the Gold Coast, is very different from the largely business based mix in Brisbane, the predominantly government travel to central Queensland or the high proportion of intra state travel to the Sunshine Coast. As such, the issues each market may face vary considerably. While there is a large overlap, tourism programs need to be tailored to the individual market they are targeting.
QHA seeks as much local input as possible from members to ensure this can occur. In the Association’s dealings with Tourism Queensland and other bodies, it seeks to represent the needs of all members and interests. The one thing that is clear about Tourism in Queensland is that one size will not fit all.
While the Queensland tourism industry is strong and vibrant and is largely able to stand alone, it is affected by the wider perceptions of Australia as a safe and attractive tourist destination. The activities of Tourism Australia and representation of the industry overseas is therefore a critical concern to members.
For further information or to discuss any of the above mentioned issues, please contact the QHA's Accommodation Division Manager on 07 3221 6999.