The Council of Australian Tour Operators (CATO), in conjunction with the Australian Tourism Export (ATEC), have secured federal government funding exclusively for outbound Tour Operators, Travel Wholesalers and Inbound Tour Operators.
Applications will open on Tuesday 23rd May for the Reviving International Tourism Grant (RITG) program, designed to assist bona-fide tourism exporters (inbound) and tour operators/wholesalers (outbound) to invest in the rebuilding and strengthening of international supply chains as leisure-based travel continues to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Investment in the development of leisure travel product within the inbound/outbound eco-system takes place well in advance of distribution, which further supports the wider travel and tourism industry at many levels. The Federal Government acknowledge CATO and ATEC members as key contributors to the future prosperity of the industry, which has led to the prioritization of the fulfillment of their $10 million pre-election commitment, to support travel and tourism for this purpose.
“It is critical that our members are supported in reconnecting with international markets to ensure a vigorous return of international leisure travel to and from Australia, through specific business development and marketing activities”, said Brett Jardine, CATO Managing Director.
Administered by Austrade, the RITG program will be delivered in two streams over financial years 22/23 and 23/24, with eligible CATO and ATEC members able to apply for at least $10,000 in stream one, to support reconnection with international markets, and $2,000 in stream two to support incremental expansion of members’ digital uplift.
To qualify for stream one funding CATO or ATEC members must have attended a major international travel and tourism trade show between 2017 and 2022*. Funds can be used towards participation in similar 2023, 2024 and 2025 events. The stream two digital uplift includes (but may not be limited to), activities and costs for website design, refresh, audit or optimisation to deliver greater visibility to international consumers.
A further stream one grant amount for financial year 2023/24, will be determined based on demand of applicants for 2022/23. If funding remains available in 2023/24, the remaining funds will be equally distributed (capped at $10,000) to all approved applicants from stream one, as a second and final payment with all grant funds to be expended before 30 June 2024.
Applications are open for a limited time through Austrade’s SmartyGrants portal with full details on the program to be available here