Sydneysiders whose holiday plans have been dashed by Queensland’s border closure are being told to urgently cancel their bookings so others can snap them up.
Queensland’s acting Tourism Minister Scott Stewart says holiday accommodation is hard to find in the state.
“We’re expecting strong interest from interstate and Queensland holidaymakers in snapping up cancelled bookings from Greater Sydney,” he said on Tuesday.
“Swift cancellations … will mean those who have missed out will be able to secure bookings and accommodation providers are less likely to be left out of pocket.”
Queensland on Monday shut its borders to anyone from Greater Sydney until at least January 8 after a coronavirus outbreak in the city’s northern beaches.
So far 83 people have been infected and the NSW government has introduced restrictions to stop the virus from spreading more widely across the city.
Outgoing federal Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham says one in 13 Australians rely on the tourism and hospitality sectors for work.
“My message to people is if you’re in a position to do so, take a travel credit, make plans to re-book as soon as you can into the future,” he told Nine on Tuesday.
“Understand there are Australian small businesses and Australian jobs doing it tough and we want to see support for those sectors for people continuing to travel as soon as it’s safe and possible to do so.”
Mr Stewart said travellers from Greater Sydney usually account for 10 per cent of holiday bookings in the Sunshine State during the summer.