With one of the most fun and successful schoolies on record still a fresh memory, attention is already turning to 2017, with the event’s original and number one accommodation provider, schoolies.com, in the midst of its busiest booking period of the year.
CEO of schoolies.com, Matt Lloyd, said the start of the new school year was always a peak booking time as Schoolies rushed to secure the best rooms close to the beach and party action.
Approximately 30,000 students booked through schoolies.com in 2016, and with numbers already ahead of the corresponding period last year, Mr Lloyd said 2017 shaping up to be another major success.
He said consistently positive feedback from past schoolies, parents, unit managers and local authorities showed that Schoolies had come of age and was gaining acceptance as an important contributor to the tourism economy.
“It was interesting to note the CEO of Gold Coast Tourism’s recent media comments that as a coming of age celebration, Schoolies had become an integral part of the destination’s DNA.
“A lot of work has gone into growing the event and making sure it stays relevant with the changing times.
“Schoolies are focussing less on excessive boozing and putting more emphasis on friendships, fun times and building memories.
“It’s a far cry from the last minute, wild getaway it had a reputation for in the early days. Kids are now booking up to 18 months in advance and have well-planned itineraries about what activities they’ll do each day.
“We now have more luxury accommodation in the mix to meet demand and the schedule of entertainment is more sophisticated, with dance events such as the Schoolies Nation Beach Festival drawing the best DJs and major corporate backing.
“Each year an army of volunteers swings into action including the much-loved Red Frogs who play such a valuable role in making the kids feel safe, on top of the incredible work of the police.
“There is no doubting the Gold Coast’s popularity for Schoolies – they keep coming back in massive numbers and it appears this year will be no exception,” Mr Lloyd said.
As the central booking site for Schoolies, Schoolies.com has organised accommodation for well over 500,000 customers since its inception in the 1980s and remains the leading information source for everything Schoolies related.