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Tasmanians to receive $150 in vouchers to boost local tourism


Plus, up to $550 in travel vouchers for families.

As the pandemic continues across the Australian mainland, Tasmanian Premier Peter Gutwein has announced an extension on the island state's border closure until at least 1 December.

For a state that receives 1.3 million visitors annually, this news is bound to take a toll on the tourism industry.

To lessen the blow on the economy, the government is incentivising Tasmanian residents to get out and explore their own state in what it's calling the "Make Yourself At Home Voucher".

This voucher gets each resident $100 in accommodation and $50 in experiences.

Got a family? You'll get even more out of this scheme with families of five able to claim $550 in vouchers. This is broken down into $150 worth of accommodation and $50 in experiences per adult (that's $400 for a couple). Plus a $50 experience voucher per child, capped at three children.

The vouchers can be used from 7 September to 1 November which includes the spring school holidays from 26 September to 11 October.

What accommodation and experiences are eligible?

Eligible accommodation is for Sunday to Thursday stays across a wide variety of property styles. This includes traditional hotels and hostels, as well as cabins, caravan parks, farm stays and holiday houses.

And those experiences? They can be for any day of the week and for tourist activities such as cruises, organised tours and attraction passes. To be eligible, businesses must provide you with a receipt and must be either a tour or an attraction.

Some activities that are excluded are events, park and wildlife passes and entry fees, vehicle hire, food and drink that's not part of a tourism experience, and souvenirs.

How does the voucher work?

To access your voucher you must register your interest. Registrations open at 9am on 7 September on this site and it's a good idea to get in early in case they run out.

Then, book your trip and keep your receipts safe.

When you book, make sure that the accommodation and experiences are of the same or greater value than your voucher amount. As this scheme is meant to stimulate tourism you must spend at least the voucher amount on your trip. Any claims under the amount, for example, a $99 hotel, will be invalid.

Only once you've completed your trip can you make your claim. This must be done within 30 days of your trip and will be provided as a reimbursement to your bank account.

Already got a trip booked from September to November? You're in. These are still eligible for the scheme. Just make sure you're registered for the voucher and follow through the claims process as normal.

Something else to note is that multiple registrations are allowed. However, you'll need to complete and claim each trip before you can register for more vouchers.

How to make the most of your voucher

Want to keep things to budget? There are heaps of stays and experiences that fall at or just over these price limits.

For example, the Country Club Tasmania in Launceston has rooms from $104 per night. Travelling as a couple? Treat yourself to an excutive one-bedroom apartment in Somerset on the Pier in Hobart from $204 per night.

As for experiences? For $59 you can get a ticket to Penny Royal Launceston, for $60 you can grab an express shuttle to Port Arthur from Hobart or for $95 you can hop on a kayak tour around Sandy Bay.

These prices are correct as at the time of writing. Accommodation prices are based on a stay on 7 September.

Another way to make the most of this deal is by hunting out deals.

As yet, there's nothing stating that the accommodation or activity has to cost full price. Therefore, if you book something on sale, you could be saving even more.

For all the latest, check out these Australia travel deals.

Note: We updated this story on 27 August 2020 with full details of the voucher scheme.

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