Nearly 2 million visitors are expected to travel the Great Ocean Road annually within a decade, Victoria’s peak tourism body says.
Victorian Tourism Industry Council (VTIC) chief executive Felicia Mariani said the numbers were more than double the current 785,000 international day trips taken per year, placing enormous pressure on existing infrastructure.
And with Avalon Airport’s international terminal opening to Air Asia flights from December, the 2026/27 projection could be reached sooner.
Ms Mariani said the industry was “poised for unprecedented growth” but relied on state and federal government to invest in world-class tourism infrastructure across a range of key areas. Funding of key projects beyond metropolitan Melbourne would provide visitors with more reasons to visit regional Victoria, stay longer and spend more, she said.
Currently 97 per cent of visitors do not stay in the region, instead opting to bed down in Melbourne. Of every dollar an international tourist spends just seven cents is spent in regional Victoria.
Ms Mariani said the GOR and Shipwreck Coast was a “crucial, highly visible and important attraction” both nationally and internationally and funding phase two of the Shipwreck Coast Master Plan was vital to improve visitor experience. She said a second international airport would provide a massive tourism boost to the state’s west and expects other international carriers will follow suit.