How busy (or not) is it in winter holiday spots cut off from half the country right now?

lissie45

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Kiwi here trying to get to Cairns/ Port Douglas for some sun! Just had to move flights from August to October because of the travel bubble pause. The rental car (which was very hard to secure back in May) was easy to transfer to October. Port Douglas accommodation is as difficult in the around $200/night budget in October as it was in August. There are some try hard airbnb places but I wont' book anything non-refundable (obviously). Had to cancel our original place and rebook a different one - there was little choice in our price range.

Cairns seems to have more options for accommodation - but that statement is true at any time of the year.

Bloody Air NZ stung us for an extra 60% on the original flights
 

MARTINE

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Kiwi here trying to get to Cairns/ Port Douglas for some sun! Just had to move flights from August to October because of the travel bubble pause. The rental car (which was very hard to secure back in May) was easy to transfer to October. Port Douglas accommodation is as difficult in the around $200/night budget in October as it was in August. There are some try hard airbnb places but I wont' book anything non-refundable (obviously). Had to cancel our original place and rebook a different one - there was little choice in our price range.

Cairns seems to have more options for accommodation - but that statement is true at any time of the year.

Bloody Air NZ stung us for an extra 60% on the original flights
Hang in there Lissie45 - those holidays will be extra special once we get there and we have the benefit of the power to boycott those companies that treated us like rubbish…
 

lissie45

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Hang in there Lissie45 - those holidays will be extra special once we get there and we have the benefit of the power to boycott those companies that treated us like rubbish…
I must say I've stopped using booking.com for anything except finding hotels - I then contact them direct.

Air NZ have always been coughs - unfortunately because we want to fly direct to Cairns (again for obvious reasons) we have no choice on carrier
 

jrfsp

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Broome is basically booked out for all of winter. Its the worst I've ever known for accommodation (or lack thereof)
 

k_sheep

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Hi there,

I can only speak for Qualia as I work there, we have been booked out for months and due to cancellations the owners have decided to use the time to ‘refresh’ rooms and a good part of the resort and spa. The were against the idea of having a full resort with construction happening in the background which would lessen the experience for guests who could visit the property. They have said to us considering how volatile border closures are they have just taken the gamble to commence the refresh and recoup any financial losses post Covid.

A few rooms are available that are further away from the main buildings which are occupied but have blocked out a fair share of pavilions due to the above so what you would see online usually is accurate (Qualias own website). Personally I would spend your money and visit post refresh.

Stay safe.
Really good to know! I was considering splurging there - wishing I had during the 50% off for healthcare workers promo. I've got a 'special' birthday coming up (was meant to be in Iceland 😭 ) so shall keep an eye on it.

Wonder if they'd do the 50% again if I promise to bring earplugs and not complain about construction :D
 

Seat0B

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I have a few days booked in Perisher end next month and have to cancel by next Saturday due to 30 day free cancellation policy. My thinking was that it would be easy to rebook as there must have been plenty of cancellations but doesn’t really appear that way. Of course some may be waiting to last minute as many cancellation policy require govt edict and at the moment NSW (I’m in Sydney) lockdown is only ‘officially’ until July 31 even if we all know it’s likely to go much longer.
A few weeks ago, my friend tried to book accommodation for 2 weeks at the Station for mid August and could only get a booking for a couple of days. Also all ski school and ski lessons were sold out. About 10 days ago, Perisher started advertising 50% off at the Station and 30% off lessons. She tried again and was now able to get the full 2 weeks at the discounted rate at the Station. So clearly a lot of people are cancelling. Don’t know how the ski lessons are looking as none of us takes lessons.
 

Seat0B

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And our future strategy is not to advance plan anything but become last minute snapper uppers.

I must say I've stopped using booking.com for anything except finding hotels - I then contact them direct.
We are also now doing both of these things too. Plus I NEVER book anything that is not fully refundable, at my choice, whenever I want. It does cost more, but I have lost quite a bit of money trying to use my previous strategy of cheap charlie bookings on the assumption that based on my previous travel habits, I would never cancel. Not so much any more - borders slamming shut has put an end to that certaint.
 

dajop

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So in our winter holiday hot spot (NOT!) on the Surf Coast in Victoria where we rent our holiday house on Airbnb, we've had inquiries for three separate weekends in August. All indicated they are waiting to see what happens with lockdowns before booking though. Before this year number of bookings for August: 0, number of enquiries for August: 0.

In September we have three bookings, all before the AFL grand final long weekend. Before this year we would only get bookings for long weekend and not before then. In June before COVID, we used get a booking for the Queens Birthday weekend and that was it. This year we had 4 bookings (although first 2 were cancelled due to lockdown #4).

Our cleaner has asked us to give as much notice as possible as this year has been "special" for him, as he's had a lot more work cleaning holiday houses than he normally would in winter.
 

jase05

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Just back from Jindabyne and Perisher. Things are very quiet there. Saturday was busier than Friday, so looks like a few fellow Canberrans headed down for the weekend. There is a massive snow dump going on, but blizzard winds and very bad viz so no fun skiing despite fresh powder and virtually no people. To tell the truth, I quite liked it - back to the good old days before skiing became so popular.
It snowed overnight in Jindabyne too - at least 5 cm and that accumulated and was still on the ground at 2pm as we were leaving.
Brother lives in Jindabyne a still goes for his daily board ride. Quiet down there currently but the local cops are still frequently nabbing those from Sydney
 
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Seat0B

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Brother lives in Jindabyne a still goes for his daily board ride. Quiet down there currently but the local cops are still frequently nabbing those from Sydney
seems to say it all.

We saw plenty of cars with NSW rego and Sydney car dealer stickers/frames on the rego plates over the weekend. Now maybe those people just bought the car in Sydney and live in regional NSW, but....
 

Seat0B

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Here is a picture of the snowfall in Jindy itself overnight Saturday. It is looking like a great season and I feel very sorry for all the businesses that are missing out on their busiest time of the year. That said, it was amazing to be able to drive up to Perisher with little/no traffic and get a car park about half way into the car park at 0845 on a Saturday morning. Even last year, if you did not hit the car park by 0815 at the very latest, you would be parked back up the road towards Smiggins. So that part, I am really loving. We will head down again a few times more this season and try to spend some money in the region, as long as we don't get locked out.

Jindy July 2021.JPEG
 

kyle

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Hi there,

I can only speak for Qualia as I work there, we have been booked out for months and due to cancellations the owners have decided to use the time to ‘refresh’ rooms and a good part of the resort and spa. The were against the idea of having a full resort with construction happening in the background which would lessen the experience for guests who could visit the property. They have said to us considering how volatile border closures are they have just taken the gamble to commence the refresh and recoup any financial losses post Covid.

A few rooms are available that are further away from the main buildings which are occupied but have blocked out a fair share of pavilions due to the above so what you would see online usually is accurate (Qualias own website). Personally I would spend your money and visit post refresh.

Stay safe.

Hi boardie_19

Can you shed any light on why Bommie is still closed? No chef, no staff, or no demand?
 

Simo

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Snow and CBR areas would be down on numbers as our school cancelled there CBR trip last week... 180 students going to Snow and other venues around CBR for the week... Accomodation was booked at a School Camp type place... Basically 2 kids to a room with a ensuite...
 

PineappleSkip

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unfortunately because we want to fly direct to Cairns (again for obvious reasons) we have no choice on carrier
Flying via BNE is a relatively low risk option. There have been a couple of short lockdowns in SE Qld, but airport transits have been exempted.

Cheers skip
 

2infinity

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Well I live in Cairns. It's freezing cold, so you probably wouldn't want to be here right now.
1627435985541.png
Cairns and surrounds is still quite busy. Not as busy as if international borders were open, so still shouldn't have any issues finding accommodation. Flights are pretty full, Qantas has even been using an A330 from Sydney and Melbourne. Would recommend dinner bookings for Friday's and Saturday's, but if you didn't, you'd still find somewhere nice to eat easy enough.

As a local, I was hoping things would be dead so we could get better deals, but it's not to be.

Having just had a cruise cancelled from Sydney in December, I've lost my appetite for making bookings anywhere until they stop with the restrictions. Fingers crossed for my Gold Coast trip in September. Intrastate are less restrictions and Qld is all good (for now), but you never know.
 

Princess Fiona

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8F768094-56B6-4FDB-959C-61F730E0CAD5.jpeg
Just chilling in DRW. Perfect timing 🤩
Arrived the day before the border closure to all of NSW.
Public areas busy, the CBD seems to have suffered terribly due to lack of Asian tourists. I’d estimate at least 2/3rds of the shops in Smith St Mall are vacant. Casuarina Square not really affected but it wouldn’t be dependent on tourism.

Hospitality busy, not venturing out of the city for the next couple of days.
Weather is absolutely glorious.
 

MARTINE

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View attachment 254154
Just chilling in DRW. Perfect timing 🤩
Arrived the day before the border closure to all of NSW.
Public areas busy, the CBD seems to have suffered terribly due to lack of Asian tourists. I’d estimate at least 2/3rds of the shops in Smith St Mall are vacant. Casuarina Square not really affected but it wouldn’t be dependent on tourism.

Hospitality busy, not venturing out of the city for the next couple of days.
Weather is absolutely glorious.
Ok
I think I am seeing a possibility for travel in maybe 3 weeks in Darwin (provided NT allow us in as we continue to have no comm transmission in Vic). I need sun and have conceded that it’s easier to plan a trip to North Korea than WA. QLD currently tricky…
so… ill have everything packed for 24hours notice ….. Ive Looked on the hotel websites and seems lots of rooms when I did dummy booking leaving tonight….
fingers crossed🤞
 

jrfsp

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Just back from a long weekend in Darwin, Was surprisingly busy!

Lots of lots of "southerners" who are temporarily making darwin home and lots of families / couples travelling around the country - never seen so many campervans / caravans in darwin.
Flights were full both ways (PER)
 

drron

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On Hayman Island.Have only seen one other couple as guests.No one has visited the main pool.Cool but not that cold at 1100.
 

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