Business Hunter has welcomed the initiative by the NSW Government to extend the redemption period for the Dine and Discover vouchers to the end of July 2021.
Business Hunter CEO Bob Hawes said that it makes enormous sense to include the forthcoming school holiday period particularly given the government data is showing there is capacity left in unredeemed vouchers and the Dine redemptions are outstripping the Discover spending.
“At the beginning of the scheme there was an estimated $50 million worth of vouchers to issued across the region. This is a significant amount of spending power and it is pleasing to note that based on the NSW government data, people are spending an average of $41 for each $25 Dine voucher used” Mr Hawes said.
“An increase in spending of that magnitude would see the $50 million face value of vouchers in our area converted into a boost of over $82 million for our regional economy.”
The extension of the program also provides an opportunity for businesses who are yet to register to join the initiative. Business Hunter has been consistently encouraging businesses including cafés, restaurants and pubs, cinemas, and museums, along with galleries and historic sites to get on board and many have done just that.
“We understand that as at the end of May less than 900 businesses were registered across the local government areas of Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, Port Stephens, Maitland and Cessnock. We would have thought this is not a full representation of all businesses entitled to sign up. We’re hoping the extension gives the remaining business the chance to participate given the likely rush that will be experienced as the scheme draws to a close.
Across New South Wales, more than four million people have downloaded the vouchers, with a combined value of more than $357 million.
Mr Hawes said the extension and injection of cash has come at a good time, with visitor economy businesses traditionally slower in winter and school holidays providing the chance to use the Discover vouchers.
“It’s money for nothing – for consumers and businesses – so everyone should be involved.”
Eligible businesses and residents can register through the Service NSW Website or App.