Latest Update: 4th Feb 2020
Please find below updates from Evan Hall, Tourism Council WA Chief Executive Officer and Phillipa Harrison, Tourism Australia Managing Director.
Due to the frequency of updates this page will now show all of the most up to date information that we receive.
Tourism Council WA Update:
Survey Assessing Coronavirus Impact on WA
This survey is designed to assess what impact the travel restrictions and international coverage of the coronavirus may have on WA destinations and businesses. Please complete this quick survey even if you are not experiencing any impact. Your feedback is greatly appreciated in the rapidly changing environment.
Tourism Australia Update
Information last updated: Monday 3 February
Airlines continue to suspend or reduce flights to and from China
Airlines are continuing to reduce or suspend flights to and from mainland China, mainly as a response to declining demand for travel to that country. You can track flight changes here.
Still no WHO recommendation to restrict international travel
The WHO continues to advise against any restrictions on international travel or trade.
Global cases of coronavirus continue to rise – first death outside China
There are now over 17000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus across at least 23 countries (including Spain, Sweden, Russia and the UK). Of the confirmed cases approximately 180 are outside China. The global death toll has risen to over 360 and the first death outside of China recorded in the Philippines. Over 480 people are said to have recovered from the virus, including 5 in Thailand and 1 in Vietnam.
For more information regarding confirmed and recovered cases visit this heat map.
Anti-Asian sentiment grows in the wake of the coronavirus
Reports of racism against people of Asian appearance have been reported in a number of countries including France, Canada and Australia. It’s our collective responsibility to ensure that people understand the facts about the transmission of this virus to keep these incidents to a minimum, to ensure a speedy recovery from our largest market.
Confirmed cases of coronavirus continue to rise in China
China is reported to have 17335 confirmed and over 12000 suspected cases of the coronavirus. Of these approximately 1300 have been classified as severe.
Australia announces entry restrictions to non-citizens travelling from China
The Australian Government has announced temporary border restrictions on entry to Australia for travellers from, or transiting through, China (with the exception of Australian permanent residents) after 1 February. These measures will be reviewed in 14 days. Australia also raised its overall travel advice for mainland China to ‘Level 4 – Do Not Travel’ and introduced a requirement for all travellers arriving out of mainland China (not just Hubei Province) to self-isolate for a period of fourteen days.
The Chief Medical Officer (CMO) has issued updated isolation requirements for hotel & tourism operators
The Chief Medical Officer today issued updated medical advice for hotel and tourism operators on the new requirements for self-isolation as follows
- Any person who left Hubei Province less than 14 days ago (isolate until 14 days after they left Hubei
- Any identified close contacts of proven cases of novel coronavirus (isolate until 14 days after last contact with the proven case)
- Any person who left, or transited through, mainland China on or after 1 February 2020 (isolate until 14 days after leaving China).
Qantas suspends flights to and from mainland China
On 2 February Qantas announced a suspension of its two direct China flights effective 9 February to 29 March 2020 citing logistical challenges for rostering crew to operate these services in the wake of entry restrictions imposed by countries including Singapore and the United States.
There is no change to Qantas services to Hong Kong.
Confirmed cases of coronavirus continue to rise in Australia
Twelve cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in Australia, two in Queensland, two in South Australia, four in Victoria and four in New South Wales (as at 3 February). In addition, 17 cases that meet the suspected case definition have been reported by several states and territories and are under investigation: Victoria (9 cases), Western Australia (2 cases), and New South Wales (6 cases).
Escalation over the weekend – information & update
The impact of the fires continues to be felt and presents Australian tourism with one of its greatest ever challenges. Over the weekend we saw the situation escalate in parts of NSW, ACT and VIC, however conditions have thankfully since eased with all fires burning at advice level or below. We will continue to regularly update the map and the bushfire information page on our website with the latest information on the situation as it unfolds.
Tourism Australia Activity
Revising activities in light of evolving situation
Tourism Australia is continuing to regularly review its activities in light of the bushfires and coronavirus situation, with a focus on spreading the message to Australians and the world is that Australia is open for business and that the best way people can support tourism recovery is to visit. What we are reviewing at the moment is the timing of this activity.
Domestic campaign & approach
Our new domestic campaign, Holiday Here This Year, along with the bespoke business events iteration Event Here This Year, continues to be rolled out across the country with initial industry, media and consumer response having been positive. We are also reviewing this year’s ATE program and will be letting delegates know of some important changes in the coming days, which are aimed at making our flagship trade event more affordable to tourism operators who we know are doing it tough at the moment.
International campaign & approach
We are currently working on the details of our revised international approach, which will include a campaign and a comprehensive international media hosting program, and we will share more information about the international campaign shortly. We are also mobilising our distribution networks to ensure that Australian experiences are still being offered in this key sales period.
Managing Director | Tourism Australia