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Third round of travel vouchers for SA

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The state government has introduced a third round of travel vouchers to boost South Australia’s tourism sector, although the opposition has criticised the move for not including the hotel and hospitality industry.

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The third round of the scheme, this time focused on tours and experiences, follows the first two rounds of accommodation vouchers offered by the government which provided a $32 million boost to the state’s economy.

Vouchers worth $50, $100 and $200 will be available to South Australians from late April after the Easter and school holiday period, and coinciding with the introduction of the federal government’s subsidised half-price flights to Adelaide and Kangaroo Island.

“Expanding the scheme to direct cash-flow into South Australian tour and experience businesses following the busy Easter period and after the JobKeeper subsidy ends is the right support at the right time,” Premier Steven Marshall said on Tuesday.

“We’ve listened to industry and business owners across SA, and this latest round of vouchers will see locals spending up on tours and experiences which they ordinarily might have overlooked while holidaying at home.”

About 500 operators are expected to register their experiences, from shark-cage diving and swimming with sea lions, to helicopter and mountain bike tours, guided food and wine trails, and hosted wildlife experiences.

The government will introduce a new “fair and equitable” system to distribute the vouchers but said more details would be released after tour operators completed the expressions of interest process.

However, Shadow Minister for Tourism Zoe Bettison questioned why the hotels and hospitality industry – included in the first two rounds of grants – were excluded from its third iteration.

“With the lacklustre support offered by the federal government’s flight discount package to South Australia’s tourism industry, Steven Marshall needs to step up and provide more targeted economic support to help our tourism operators survive,” Bettison said this morning.

“With JobKeeper scheme set to end in the coming weeks, the Marshall Liberal Government need to invest in substantive job saving programs to protect jobs in our tourism industry.”

-with AAP

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