Sunshine Coast Destination Ltd (SCDL) has taken over the management of Sunshine Coast Council’s nine Visitor Information Centres (VICs).
CEO of SCDL, Steve Cooper, has welcomed the move stating this as a proud moment and significant event for tourism in the region. “This exciting new structure will create closer ties between tour operators and Visitor Information Centres and makes sense – we will now be working collectively as one tourism team.”
Mr Cooper says visitor information services play a key role for tourism in the region. “While the trend towards visitors researching and booking holidays online continues, these same visitors also value personal recommendations once they’re in their destination.
“That’s where the local knowledge, guidance and friendly welcome provided by VIC staff and volunteers can make all the difference. VICs are the frontline of our region’s tourism industry,” added Mr Cooper.
The decision follows an independent report into council’s Visitor Information Centres recommended the centres be managed by the tourism industry to allow; a greater focus on tourists, a greater focus on the needs of the tourism industry, a more effective and efficient model, improved synergies with tourism marketing and a better experience for tourists.
The change in management means the Sunshine Coast will still have 17 Visitor Information Centres, nine run by SCDL, six by community organisations and two by Tourism Noosa.
The nine SCDL operated centres are:
- Caloundra Road, Caloundra
- 77 Bulcock Street, Caloundra
- Jessica Park, Nicklin Way, Minyama
- Settler’s Rotary Park, Reed Street, Glass House Mountains
- 198 Main Road, Montville
- Cnr Melrose Parade and Sixth Avenue, Cotton Tree (Maroochydore)
- Cnr First Ave and Brisbane Rd, Mooloolaba
- Tickle Park, David Low Way, Coolum Beach
- Arrivals Terminal, Sunshine Coast Airport, Marcoola
Visitor Information Centres operate as an important community facility and make a significant economic contribution to tourism, by providing information to visitors that encourages them to stay longer, spend more money, experience more attractions and return to a region.
In recent years, there has been increased recognition of the role of visitor information centres and their importance in providing high quality tourist information.