Qld tourism wants border opening notice

Queensland's tourism and hospitality industry was blindsided when intrastate travel began again.
Queensland's tourism and hospitality industry was blindsided when intrastate travel began again.

Queensland's tourism sector is demanding more than a day's notice about when the state's borders will reopen so they're not left behind again.

Their plea comes after Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk blindsided the tourism and hospitality industry on Sunday by announcing intrastate travel would begin the following day.

It caught many hotels, restaurant, major accommodation operators unawares and unable to operate from day one because of the lack of lead-up time to arrange staff, re-stock and advertise their businesses.

With advance warning, visitors will be able to book and operators will be ready to open on day one and not waste valuable time, said Queensland Tourism Industry Council chief executive Daniel Gschwind.

"It's easier shutting things down (overnight) but it's much more complicated to get things going again," Mr Gscwhind said.

"The airlines, the accommodations providers and suppliers all need to know in advance."

A case in point is that even though intrastate travel is permitted, it will not be until June 22 when Alliance Airlines will put on extra flights between Brisbane and the Whitsundays.

A Qantas Group representative said Qantas and Jetstar will soon be adding more flights within Queensland, followed by interstate flights when the borders reopen.

However, AAP understands Qantas needs at least a week's notice, preferably more, to arrange additional flights.

This will allow them to, among other things, contact crew, organise catering, advertise fares and promote routes.

"We are keen to not only reunite family and friends but importantly help tourism operators get back on their feet," the Qantas representative told AAP.

Queensland Hotels Association CEO Bernie Hogan was not calling for the borders to open before it is safe to do so, but requested more than the 24 hours of notice for the return of intrastate travel.

"We need a week or two weeks' notice so they can take bookings because businesses are hamstrung because they can't guarantee they are going to get patrons so they can't organise staff," " Mr Hogan told AAP.

Ms Palaszczuk said a decision will be made at the end of the month whether the borders remain closed.

Australian Associated Press