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Dallas arrives in Australia to spread the tourism word

May 7, 2014 Destination North America, Headline News No Comments Email Email

egtmedia59Australians love Dallas and 60,000 Aussies visited the Texan city last year. President and chief executive of the Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau, Phillip Jones, was in Sydney yesterday to spread the good news about double-digit growth in 2013 and similarly impressive growth expected in 2014.

Jones is heading a delegation to Australia in association with Visit USA. Comprising delegates from the Dallas CVB and the Grapevine CVB, the team heads for Melbourne on Wednesday. Grapevine is the Texan city in which Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) International Airport is located.

From left - Geoff Hutton, Visit USA_ Amanda Bolger, Qantas_ Shana Schlabach, Grapevine CVB

For a size comparison, the Dallas–Fort Worth Metroplex has a population approaching 7 million, making it the fourth largest urban complex in the US. Grapevine, in contrast, has a population of just 50,000 or so.

Jones said 19 billionaires live in Dallas and all want a beautiful park or building named after them, which contributes to making the city attractive and fun to visit. The formula works: about 100 people every day are moving to Dallas and Dallas-Fort Worth is the fastest growing region in the US.

Qantas flies to DFW Airport daily nonstop, using a B747-400. Jones said yesterday he was keen for the airline to upgrade to a A380 as “we think we can fill that too”. Qantas started its DFW route in 2011 with four services a week. DFW Airport is the home base for Qantas’ oneworld Alliance partner American Airlines and offers more connections than any other American hub worldwide.

Paul McCallum, Grapevine CVB

Dallas is a multicultural and diverse city. Jones said 40% of its population is Latino and 20% is African American. It also hosts the fifth-largest gay and lesbian community in the US. Another little known fact about Dallas is that it has the largest urban arts precinct in the US.

Jones spoke of the new George W. Bush Museum and a tax-free scheme which lets tourists reclaim all the tax on their shopping at DFW Airport with no hassle.

Paul McCallum, executive director of Grapevine CVB, said Texas and Australia, “forged in remoteness with people being dependent on each other” had much in common. McCallum should know – he is originally from New South Wales, having headed to Texas over 30 years ago.

Grapevine, known for winegrowing (it hosts the biggest wine tourism event in the US), is also top territory for family experiences. McCallum said Grapevine was “hometown USA” and “main street USA”, with great appeal for Australians.

Australia is the sixth largest point of origin for visitors to Texas. With an annual growth of 40%, Australian tourism represents a major growth market. Since Qantas service to DFW began in 2011, Australian arrivals to the U.S. have increased 6% a year, and are expected to continue at this pace through 2018, according to Travel Market Insights.

Geoff Hutton of Visit USA

Celebrating its 40th Anniversary in 2014, DFW Airport is located halfway between the cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas.

DFW International Airport is the world’s fourth busiest, offering 1850 flights per day and serving 60 million passengers a year.

Written by Peter Needham

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