South Burnett Regional Council will conduct some studies on the Visitor Information Centres.
South Burnett Regional Council will conduct some studies on the Visitor Information Centres. Tobi Loftus

Future of essential tourism service explored

THE future of the South Burnett Visitor Information centres will be investigated through a study.

The South Burnett Regional Council will be undertaking the future of the VICs study to develop a clear plan ahead for tourism services.

The study will focus on a range of investigation and research topics and will use case study examples from other locations or local history to inform a discussion paper.

Open consultation with volunteers across the five South Burnett centres, industry and the Council will be undertaken.

Councillor Danita Potter said this will include discussing strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats and gaps, developing an information direction for the VICs.

"The study aims to ascertain how VICs can evolve during changing consumer and digital landscapes to foster regional tourism and economic growth,” she said.

The Council will continue to work with all stakeholders and volunteers to continue to promote the VICs.

South Burnett VICs play a valuable role in local tourism and in recent years the centres have been under the spotlight in recent years, as the tourism sector sees shifts in consumer purchase behaviour.

The wider tourism industry has witnessed the closure or redevelopment of information centres over the years, as well as the implementation of alternative methods for the provision of information for visitors.

South Burnett is not immune to these changes and has seen a decrease in visitors through the VIC network, in comparison to the past 10 years.

Influencing the consumer behaviour shift, is the use of digital platforms for searching, selecting and booking travel.

Online searchers are increasing, and is potentially educating tourists about accommodation options, places to visit and things to do.

In this changing environment, the South Burnett VICs still have a vital role to play, providing local information, local products and local knowledge.

South Burnett Regional Council will continue to work with all stakeholders and volunteers to continue to promote the VICs.