Accommodation vouchers to boost tourism across South Australia during the COVID-19 pandemic have sold out, with the 50,000 available snapped up in 90 minutes.
The Great State vouchers, which became available from Thursday, offered $100 off accommodation in Adelaide and $50 off in regional centres, provided travellers were staying at participating venues.
Premier Steven Marshall said the scheme would help get South Australians employed in the tourism and hospitality sectors back to work.
"The tourism sector, and accommodation providers in the CBD in particular, have been hit hard since COVID-19 hit and it's vital that we all work together to boost this sector back up and most importantly, bring back the jobs that have been lost," he said.
"We've seen the first green shoots of recovery over the past month, particularly with regional tourism.
"However, our CBD is still suffering and that's why we're urging South Australians to get back into the city."
But Opposition Tourism Spokeswoman Zoe Bettison said only a small number of tourism providers were involved and called for a second round of vouchers to be scheduled.
She said the scheme should also be broadened to take in other businesses including travel agents, tours attractions.
"The economic benefits of this voucher system should be passed onto the broader tourism industry," she said.
"Vouchers are a great way of stimulating demand, and the tourism industry desperately needs it."
Ms Bettison said the money on offer was also less than that provided by some other states and territories.
"We have a lot of tourism operators in South Australia fighting to survive," she said.
"The South Australian government uses southaustralia.com as a booking referral website, and these vouchers only apply to three per cent of these listings."
The vouchers can help pay for accommodation from now until December 11 but it must be booked by October 31.
Mr Marshall thanked those who went online to snap up the vouchers.
"By doing so you're helping support local jobs in our tourism sector," he said.
The initiative came as the Hilton Hotel in the CBD opened its doors this week for the first time since April and as other hotels reported increasing occupancy rates.
SA reported no new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, leaving the state's total at 479.
There are just four active infections.
Australian Associated Press
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