SATC launches cheap flights to pick up backpackers

The South Australian Tourism Commission (SATC) launched £10 (AU$17.72) return airfares from the UK and Ireland to Adelaide last week, to encourage backpackers with a working holiday visa to return to the country.

Two hundred seats are available on Qatar Airways services, sold through tour operator Trailfinder. Among the requirements for the scheme, individuals must be UK or Irish citizens, have a working holiday visa and be able to travel to Adelaide by September 30, 2022.

Tourism Minister Zoe Bettison welcomed the return of people on working holiday visas, saying it was a “win-win”, with a boost for the state’s tourism industry.

“Our tour operators have missed having international visitors on their tours and experiences, and booking accommodation, and they have also missed the backpacker workforce and vibrancy they bring.

“In turn, we know these young people missed traveling and missed seeing South Australia – they harbor a love for our state and our country, which often inspires them to return later in life,” said Bettison said.

In 2019, before the pandemic, South Australia had 27,000 working holiday visas, which the government says contributed $47 million to the economy.

“We want to attract these young people to come to South Australia. We know that when they come, not only do they work here, but they stay and spend as tourists,” said Australian Hotels Association chief executive Ian Horne.

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