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Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Funding to improve accessible tourism

THE Queensland Government has celebrated World Tourism Day and Queensland’s Year of Accessible Tourism with the launch of inclusive tourism grants.

Queensland’s $5 million Accessible Tourism Elevate Fund will support more tourism operators to create more world-class, inclusive visitor experiences.

The fund is broken down into access starter grants and access project grants with $2 million and $3 million in funding respectively.

However, $5,000 access starter grants are available for accessibility audits and plans, website upgrades and staff training, as the first steps to transforming visitor experiences.

For tourism operators ready to proceed with inclusive infrastructure and technology upgrades, there are access project grants from $50,000 to $250,000.

Tourism Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said Queensland’s great lifestyle and world-class visitor experiences are too good not to be shared and enjoyed by everyone.

“The Queensland Government’s Year of Accessible Tourism is about supporting tourism operators to elevate Queensland’s global potential as an inclusive, all-abilities destination,” he said.

“Our commitment to delivering the most accessible and inclusive Olympic and Paralympic Games ever in 2032 is also a golden opportunity for Queensland tourism operators to shine.

“These accessible tourism grants will back more Queensland operators to fast-track smaller upgrades that make a huge difference to accessibility for visitors from around the world.”

The State Government is investing $12 million in the Year of Accessible Tourism to create an enduring legacy for Queensland as a global all-abilities visitor destination.

Accessible tourism is growing as more Australian and overseas visitors with a disability seek out welcoming destinations able to support their stay.

Modelling by Tourism Research Australia estimates travellers with a disability contribute up to $1.9 billion a year to Queensland’s visitor economy, which could double with more accessible tourism experiences.

Grant applications will open in late October and can be accessed here.

Keep up with the latest news in Cairns and the Far North, and check out some of our top stories this week: Harleys celebrates 30 years and three generations and Hospital pharmacist recognised for work.

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