Caravan industry paves the road to Queensland’s domestic tourism recovery

In a first for Caravanning Queensland, this year’s Let’s Go Brisbane Caravan and Outdoor Sale was home to an onsite COVID-19 vaccination site, as well as hundreds of motorhomes, campers, caravans and outdoor products.

Over the four-day event, 16,189 ‘cara-fans’ flocked to the Brisbane Showgrounds to check out the pre-Christmas offers, with visitors and exhibitors alike taking the opportunity to get vaccinated at the Queensland Health pop-up clinic.

More than 120 vaccinations were administered over the weekend. Caravanning Queensland Trade CEO, Jason Plant, said the event’s high attendance rates in 2020 and 2021 show just how keen Queenslanders are to explore their own backyards.

“This year’s attendance exceeded 2017, 2018 and 2019 visitation, a clear indication the caravan industry continues to
thrive,” said Mr Plant.

“This year was not only a success because of the strong sales and large crowds that we saw, but also because, for the first time ever, we were able to offer visitors the opportunity to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

“The caravan industry has played a critical role in supporting local and domestic tourism in Queensland since the pandemic began, supporting Queensland’s return to travel with an onsite vaccination clinic was the logical next step.”

Scott Hopkins and his family travelled all the way from Hervey Bay for the event, where they purchased their very first RV.

“We had been to caravanning shows in Maryborough, but nothing like the Let’s Go Brisbane Caravan and Outdoor Sale,” Mr Hopkins said.

“We went to the event to look at campers and walked away with a Stoney Creek Scout-14+2 Gen2 Hybrid Caravan, which we couldn’t be happier with.

“The whole process was very smooth and painless – we were shown the facts, given options, and decided that the Stoney Creek was the best option for our family – the indoor shower and ensuite definitely sold us on it.

“The smile on our kids’ faces when we put the deposit down was worth a million dollars – we’ve already got plans to travel out West and to Fraser Island, but our first family holiday will be to either Rainbow Beach or Monto over Christmas.”

Chris Mangifesta from Golf Super Centre, said visitors to the event were educated and prepared to buy this year.

“We had quite a few orders over the weekend, and especially a strong market for motorhomes, as well as people adapting to smaller caravans and campers,” Mr Mangifesta said.

“People were a lot more educated about what they wanted, and we saw a real trend for Australian-built RVs, with buyers wanting to know how and where they were made.

“Some of our visitors had been to previous Caravanning Queensland events, or even to last year’s October Sale, had done their research and came back to make their RV purchase.”

For those #Carafans who missed out on the Let’s Go Caravan and Outdoor Sale, Caravanning Queensland are already gearing up to deliver another successful event at the Let’s Go Gold Coast Caravan & Outdoor Expo to be held at Metricon Stadium in March 2021.