PROMISING SIGNS: Sione Lupina, 4, and brother Vincent, 5, from Brisbane, enjoy Kings Beach in the lead-up to what is expected to be a bumper Easter holiday break.
PROMISING SIGNS: Sione Lupina, 4, and brother Vincent, 5, from Brisbane, enjoy Kings Beach in the lead-up to what is expected to be a bumper Easter holiday break. Brett Wortman

Great timing makes for boom in bookings

TOURISM operators are ready to scoop up a pool of tourists expected to choose a Sunshine Coast holiday in a month littered with public holidays and school term breaks.

A swag of forward hotel bookings is pointing towards this being one of the best Easter holidays in recent years.

In a welcome break from tradition, the Queensland school holidays will start two weeks before the Easter long weekend, followed by the Anzac Day public holiday four days later.

New South Wales and Victorian families should start their holidays mid-April presenting a four-week period of opportunity for the Sunshine Coast.

And while it is too soon for an Easter long weekend weather forecast, many tourists have already said a big 'yes' to a Coast holiday.

Sunshine Coast Destination Limited CEO Simon Ambrose said the feeling was positive among tourism operators who were still reaping the rewards from a fruitful summer.

"The makeup of April provides potential for people to have a longer break and we welcome them here," Mr Ambrose said.

At Caloundra, which is traditionally a hotspot for family holidays, forward bookings are looking strong.

Caloundra Chamber of Commerce tourism chair and Rumba Resort general manager Bill Darby said occupancy was heading to beat last year's Easter break by about 15%.

"The good weather we've been having has people making some pretty solid advanced decisions on travelling here for Easter," Mr Darby said.

"In domestic tourism the average stay 10 years ago was three nights, now it's about two nights across the country, but during school holidays we see the average increase to about four nights.

"Forward bookings mean less last minute discounting which results in more money moving around in our economy."

At Noosa it was a similar story, with plenty of forward bookings for Easter.

Tourism Noosa CEO Damien Massingham said looking back at previous years, a month out from Easter many bookings sheets had gaps and availability.

This year the holes are filling up quick with visitors eager to make plans early.

"Across the board forward bookings in Noosa are looking quite strong, certainly stronger than last year but I would suggest that if someone is looking for a Sunshine Coast break or Noosa break they get in soon.

"Our beachfront accommodation houses in particular are booking fast.

"Easter is always a good period for us and this year we have the New South Wales, Victorian and Queensland holidays fanning over a three-week period."

Upcoming events such as the Noosa Food and Wine Festival and Noosa Mutlisports weekend should tick the region over into May.



April 5: Justice Crew at Nambour Civic Centre, Nambour.

April 12 Underwater World Sealife Family Sleepover.

April 15: Laughin' at the Lake adventure jumping castles at Lake Kawana Community Centre.

April 15: Circa's Holiday Circus Workshop- hula hoops, tumbling, acrobatics.

April 15-20: Check out the action at Stockland Australian Dragon Boat Championships at Lake Kawana.

April 18-21: Ma and Pa Bendall Surf Classic action at Caloundra.

April 19: Kenilworth Cheese, Wine and Food Festival free family event from 7am.

April 20: Ocean Street World Festival at Maroochydore, international cuisine.

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