Tourism Australia seals trio of deals in China

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Tourism Australia signs the agreement with Singapore Airlines
Tourism Australia signs the agreement with Singapore Airlines

Tourism Australia made significant headway with its China strategy this week, with the signing of three significant marketing deals in the country.

The tourism board has formed new partnerships China Eastern Airlines, Singapore Airlines and e-commerce giant Alibaba, in an effort to entice more Chinese travellers to Australian shores.

The three deals were all signed in Shanghai by Tourism Australia’s managing director John O’Sullivan, outgoing chairman Geoff Dixon, and new regional general manager for Greater China, Andrew Hogg.

“These are three partners who are well established within China and who also have the ability to reach our target customer. What’s so important about these deals is that it gives us strong commercial platforms to convert new and high yielding business for Australia,” said Dixon.

Under the airline agreements, Tourism Australia has extended its partnership with Shanghai-based China Eastern by a further three years, with the two parties agreeing to invest up to AU$11.5 million (US$8.8m) on marketing activities, including the launch of a new series of travel packages.

The agreement with Singapore Airlines meanwhile, will see include joint campaigns worth AU$2.7m, targeting Chinese MICE agents and corporate buyers.

Finally, the three-year agreement with Alibaba will see Australia become the first overseas long-haul destination to have its own dedicated sales page on the Alitrip website. The portal will be co-branded under the ‘There’s Nothing Like Australia’ campaign, and will feature Australian travel packages offered via the tourism board’s Chinese travel trade partners.

“The partnership with Alibaba is a landmark deal since it gives us a huge distribution and conversion platform within our most valuable international market,” said O’Sullivan. “It also gives us access to consumer data which will help us better target our destination message and sell quality Australian holiday packages within a market which is already worth AU$5.7 billion a year to us.”

China is currently Australia’s second largest inbound market, with 839,500 visitor arrivals and AU$5.7bn in overnight expenditure in 2014.

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