Australia goes ‘big’ for domestic tourism in 2021

Australia may have plenty of kitschy, human-made ‘big’ things, but no amount of overblown bananas or prawns could match the country’s epic landscape.

With full respect to our beloved behemothic icons, “thinking bigger” is the crux of Tourism Australia’s next phase in their ongoing “Holiday Here This Year” campaign, and it couldn’t be more inspiring.

Zoe Foster Blake and her comedian husband, Hamish Blake, star in TA’s sentimental new ad.

The star couple bring a touch of tenderness and comedy while searching for some of the biggest experiences in the country. And it’s a long ad. Because there’s a lot to choose from.

Aimed at encouraging Australians to travel further, stay longer, and apply the idea of “slow travel” (that is, patient, immersive, and attentive extended vacations) to their own backyard, the new Tourism Australia ad avoids preaching the virtues of a bigger domestic holiday. Words aren’t really all that necessary when you’re watching two big personalities flit through iconic destinations like the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, Purnululu National Park in Western Australia, Litchfield National Park in Northern Territory, Wineglass Bay in Tasmania, and Port Lincoln in South Australia. Amongst many other large-scale Australian adventures.

Tourism Minister Dan Tehan said that the Government is hoping the ad will encourage people to take holidays of five days or more, spending some of that pent-up annual leave on their own backyard (and it’s ailing tourism-driven economy).

This is, of course, opposed to the typical wont of Aussies, where we tend to stack our leave so we can spend longer abroad.

With the interest in more exploratory domestic travel continually shooting up, it seems Tourism Australia are jumping on an already fuelled-up, rearing-to-go wagon. Domestic travel is pumping right now. As it should be.

“This new campaign aims to get Australians to travel further afield, take a longer holiday, and visit those parts of the country typically reliant on international tourism,” said Tehan. “Australians typically spend more time overseas than foreign tourists spend in Australia, so we want Australians to treat their domestic holiday this year like an overseas trip.”

The net impact of Australian tourist spending Australia was a positive benefit to the economy of around $7.5 billion in the December quarter; and in the 2019, holidays of five nights or longer contributed $31.8 billion to the economy.

“Every epic holiday that we take in our own backyard delivers a significant shot in the arm for our tourism businesses, workers, and communities,” added Tehan.

Given Australia is so vast, from Tasmania and South Australia, to the Top End and Far North Queensland, it’s not hard to imagine just how big tourists can think as they turn focus away from far-flung international destinations and start thinking about how they are going to put a few more ticks next to their Australian bucket list.

It’s a line of thought driven by the profound changes of the COVID-19 pandemic, where we witnessed just how quickly and relentlessly the immense privilege of free movement, travel, and adventure can be ripped away.

From a pub crawl via helicopter in the Top End to a fresh seafood trawl in Tasmania; a wine sojourn in South Australia, to marine exploration at Ningaloo. It’s not hard to think of big ideas when it comes to travel within Australia.

The “go bigger, stay longer” idea behind this new phase of the “Holiday Here This Year” campaign is beautifully expressed by this new ad, which will be rolled out across a range of channels including TV, print, online, social media, content partnerships, search, radio, cinema, and outdoor advertising.

Alongside the new ad comes, has also launched a new online program, where a simple and interactive quiz plays matchmaker and suggests Australian holidays based on various answers.

Feature image: Sunset on Mindil Beach, Darwin; Credited to Tourism Australia.

Chris Singh

Chris Singh is an Editor-At-Large at the AU review, loves writing about travel and hospitality, and is partial to a perfectly textured octopus. You can reach him on Instagram: @chrisdsingh.