Tourism campaign aimed at regional recovery

Cowra locals have been filmed this week to feature in a new campaign 'We want you back' to stimulate tourism across the region as COVID-19 restrictions are eased.

The $30k tourism campaign is a partnership between 10 local government areas, Orange360, Central NSW Joint Organisation and Destination Country and Outback, and will target the VFR market (visiting friends and relatives) which makes up 35-40 per cent of travellers within and across the region.

"The aim of the 'We want you back' campaign is to create a personal connection between the locals and travellers who we wish to welcome back to help stimulate the economy once restrictions are eased," Cowra Mayor, Councillor Bill West said.

"Friends and family will be some of the first to visit as they seek to spend time with loved ones and travel to a safe, familiar place.

"We need to make sure our region is at the top of everybody's must-visit list once they can travel to regional NSW again."

Through their visual storytelling, the local ambassadors will personally share what they love about the region as a reminder and inspiration to others.

They will promote food and wine, retail and attractions, art and culture, nature and historical experiences.

Renowned videographer Andrew Barnes has been commissioned to capture the content including a series of video interviews (vox-pops), stills and beautiful imagery.

When it is safe to travel again, the campaign will be launched across social media and digital channels and supported by a public relations and social media campaign.

The local government areas featured in the campaign include Cowra, Orange, Blayney, Cabonne, Bathurst, Oberon, Lithgow, Forbes, Lachlan, Weddin and Parkes.

Domestic VFR visitation accounts for 37 per cent of NSW domestic overnight visitors and spent over $3.3 billion.

Accommodation may be hosted but they spend more in cafes, restaurants, attractions, shops, gifts and on local produce.

VFR visitor expenditure in NSW has grown 23.9 per cent, about twice holiday expenditure (12.5 per cent).

Intrastate visitors stay with hosts on average 4.1 nights (sources NVS March 2016).