25/09/2020 - 10:30

COVID-19 laps against RIA results

25/09/2020 - 10:30

Bookmark

Upgrade your subscription to use this feature.

Visitation to Rottnest Island fell by 36 per cent in the previous financial year as travel restrictions transformed the tourist hotspot into a COVID-19 quarantine zone.

Rottnest Island operated as a COVID-19 quarantine zone between April and June of this year. Photo: Attila Csaszar

Visitation to Rottnest Island fell by 36 per cent in the previous financial year as travel restrictions transformed the tourist hotspot into a COVID-19 quarantine zone.

That’s according to the Rottnest Island Authority’s latest annual report, which shows 502,585 people having arrived on the island in the year to June 30.

By comparison, 785,001 people arrived on the island in the previous period.

That decline was likely due to ongoing domestic and international travel restrictions at the height of Western Australia’s COVID-19 outbreak.

The state government had commandeered the island to use as a quarantine facility for returning international travellers between April and June of this year, 

The island has since reopened to visitors.

Acknowledging the impact COVID-19 has had on the island, RIA chair John Langoulant said a comprehensive marketing campaign coupled with the opening of the Samphire Resort at Hotel Rottnest would help to recover domestic visitors.

“These are all in different ways transformative projects, designed to take the island into the middle years of the 21st century, through which we will continue to improve key areas of the island’s facilities and attractions without changing the inherent quality of a relaxed holiday experience on the doorstep of the city,” he said.

RIA executive director Michelle Reynolds likewise said COVID-19 had affected visitation numbers, and thanked staff for their efforts during the time the island operated as a quarantining station.

“I am proud to report that in responding to this direction that the culture and capacity of the Rottnest Island community stood tall,” she said.

Ms Reynolds has since departed as executive director, assuming the role of chief executive at the City of Perth in April.

Read more about her background and ambitions in the role in the forthcoming issue of Business News, out October 5.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

Subscription Options