Day Seven of the Year of the Ox
Tourism Australia and Partners ‘Ong-line’ Virtual Gathering!
(February 18th, 2021)On the seventh day of the Lunar New Year of the Year of the Ox, Tourism Australia and its partners met online to celebrate the New Year, and the epidemic did not stop them!
“In the past, Team Australia has always enjoyed visiting our Key Distribution Partners during the Chinese New Year festive season to extend our best wishes and spread some Aussie love. However, this year, due to the current restrictions, we were unable to meet everyone in person, but we didn’t want to miss the opportunity to celebrate the occasion. So the team has decided to have the ‘Ong-line’ gathering to connect with our partners and extend our festive greetings.” said Elaine Leong, Tourism Australia’s Country Manager Malaysia.
A total of around 50 participants including Tourism Australia, State & Territory Organisations, and Key Distribution Partners gathered ‘Ong-line’. According to Brent Anderson, Tourism Australia’s Regional General Manager South & South East Asia, it was so wonderful to see so many of their partners at the online event and they really appreciate that everyone took the time to celebrate together.
It is worth mentioning that 18 Feb is also the 7 th day of the lunar new year (Ren-ri) and a good day to gather for “lou sang”. Hence, the team delivered Yee Sang to all the participants and organised a virtual ‘lou hei’ with lots of auspicious greetings. We hope that it will bring all of us good fortune in this Year of the Ox!
“We all know it has been such a difficult time and the tourism industry is one of the hardest hit, but we are so inspired when we see how our partners are navigating through this pandemic by diversifying their activities and trying new initiatives. It was also a lot of fun to hear what everyone has been up to during the lockdown period, with many taking this time to connect with family and improve themselves.”
“What really stood out for us was the fighting spirit of our industry partners!Everyone remains optimistic about international travel and many are looking forward to travelling to Australia again and cannot wait to get back to business once the time is right.“ said Brent.
Last year turned out to be a difficult one to love. Still, good things did happen. One of the highlights of 2020 was the Aussie Specialist Programme – the team in Malaysia as well as around the world really worked hard to put on engaging and innovative sessions with all participants. It also provided an opportunity for the Australian tourism industry to connect with their partners in the market to ensure that the relationship remains strong and committed to working together to convert demand into bookings when the borders reopen. The support of the travel trade for the programme is also evidence of the huge demand that people still have for Australian travel.
According to Brent, “We also wanted to keep Australia at the top of travellers’ minds and rolled out our ‘dreaming’ content campaign to the public. The content was very well received by the audience, including record viewing numbers for our 8D videos. We also had our ‘Live from AUS’ sessions where people could view and connect with various tourism experiences across Australia.”
“We were also excited to work with the team at Apple Vacations on the ‘Travel Recovery Campaign’ which was held in Q3 of 2020. It was a great learning opportunity for us. Seeing that the appetite for international travel still remains strong among Malaysians gives us confidence about the outbound market.”
In 2021, Team Australia is hopeful that the situation will improve, especially with the rollout of vaccines in many countries. This will give a chance for international travel to resume. While waiting for Australia’s borders to reopen to international visitors, Tourism Australia remains hopeful of the long-term opportunities for Australian tourism. Their partners in Malaysia have demonstrated great strength and tenacity in riding this out. They are confident that with this spirit, we will all be able to work together to inspire Malaysian travellers to book their Australian holiday when the borders reopen.
Last but not least, in this Year of the Ox, the team hopes that everyone can move forward with strength and courage to welcome the new year.
“We hope that this new year will usher in an abundance of good health, great luck, prosperity, joy, and love. “
“As we continue to navigate and adapt to the changes in our daily lives, we look to places for inspiration and wanderlust. We hope that Australia can be that inspiration, as you explore its laid-back lifestyle, historical culture, unique wildlife, and unforgettable landscapes that each state has to offer. We miss our mates and are ready to welcome visitors when the time comes.”
“Wishing you and your loved ones a Happy Lunar New Year and a great ‘Niu’ year ahead! We hope you will have a wonderful and meaningful celebration.”