Categories & Criteria

Entrants are encouraged to enter the category that best reflects their core business.

Winners of categories 1 through to 25 are automatically judged at the Australian Tourism Awards for a chance to be recognised as the best in the country.

Categories and criteria is set by the Australian Tourism Industry Council (ATIC) on behalf of all states and territories.

Entrants may enter more than one category,  however may only enter one submission in any one of the following group of categories:

  • Attractions – either category 1 or 2;
  • Festivals & Events – either category 3 or 4;
  • Tour and/or Transport Operators – either category 11 or 12;
  • Accommodation – either category 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 or 23

If entering the Specialised Tourism Services category entrants in this category are not permitted to enter any other category. This category  is for entrants that are unable to meet the criteria of other categories.

For the 2019 Rules for Entry, please click here. The qualifying period is based on the financial year in which the Awards are held – 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019. All activities, achievements and innovations referred to within submissions must have occurred within this period.

Word limit:
Most categories are 12,500 words with the exception of the below:

  • Excellence in Food Tourism and Excellence in Accessible Tourism: 8,000 words
  • Outstanding Contribution by an Individual, Outstanding Contribution by Volunteers and Young Achiever Awards: 2,500 words

Find more information on:

01

Major Tourist Attractions

This category recognises natural or built tourist attractions that attract amongst the highest visitor numbers during the qualifying period for Victoria.

Questions and Criteria

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Visit Victoria

02

Tourist Attractions

This category recognises natural or built tourist attractions that attract significant visitor numbers during the qualifying period for Victoria.

Questions and Criteria

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03

Major Festivals and Events

This category recognises leisure festivals, events and exhibitions that enhance the profile/awareness and appeal of the destination they are held in as well as creating economic impact, increased visitation and community involvement.

This category is open to (but not limited to) sporting, arts, historical, cultural, literary, comedy, culinary and general interest festivals, events and exhibitions with local, interstate and international visitor attendance over 50,000 or recognised by the STO as a major event on their event calendar.

The festival/event must have occurred during the qualifying period. Festivals/events may be one-off or reoccurring events.

Questions and Criteria

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Department of Transport

04

Festivals & Events

This category recognises leisure festivals, events and exhibitions that enhance the profile/awareness and appeal of the destination they are held in as well as creating economic impact, increased visitation and community involvement.

This category is open to (but not limited to) sporting, arts, historical, cultural, literary, humorous, culinary and general interest festivals, events and exhibitions with local, interstate and international visitor attendance under 50,000 or NOT recognised by the STO as a major event on their event calendar. These may be one-off or reoccurring events.

The festival/event must have occurred during the qualifying period. Festivals/events may be one-off or reoccurring events.

Questions and Criteria

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05

Ecotourism

This category recognises ecologically sustainable tourism with a primary focus on experiencing natural areas that foster environmental and cultural understanding, appreciation and conservation.

Questions and Criteria

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City of Melbourne

06

Cultural Tourism

This category recognises tourism operations that foster a greater understanding and appreciation of authentic culture, history, heritage and/or the arts.

Questions and Criteria

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07

Qantas Award for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Tourism

This category recognises Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tourism operations that demonstrate authenticity and cultivate a greater understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, history and traditions.

Questions and Criteria

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Qantas Logo 2016

08

Specialised Tourism Services

This category recognises tourism services/products that enhances the visitor experience.

This category is open to businesses who provide a service or product that:

  • Integrates with other tourism products to enhance the visitor experience, OR
  • Directly provides a service or product to the visitor that enhances their visitor experience.

Entrants in this category could include, tourism retail experiences, holiday accommodation management services, online information and booking system providers, member services, money exchange services, language and interpreter services, hire facilities, retail travel agents, wholesalers or inbound tourism operators.

Traded for the entire qualifying period.

Entrants to this category are not permitted to enter any other additional categories.

Questions and Criteria

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09

Visitor Information Services

This category recognises the consistent delivery of high quality and face to face information services to the visitor. It is open to Visitor Information Centres/Tourist Offices, Local Tourist Associations and Regional Tourism Organisations.

Questions and Criteria  

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Parks Victoria

10

Business Event Venues

This category recognises venues who provide high quality facilities specifically designed for business events e.g. meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions.

Questions and Criteria

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Business Events Victoria

11

Major Tour & Transport Operators

This category recognises a major contribution to tourism through the combined provision of touring and transport services. It is open to businesses with 15 or more annual full time equivalent employees.

Questions and Criteria

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VCCI

12

Tour & Transport Operators

This category recognises a significant contribution to tourism through the combined provision of touring and transport services. It is open to businesses with fewer than 15 annual full time equivalent employees.

Questions and Criteria

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Grand Ridge

13

Adventure Tourism

This category recognises out door adventure tourism experiences that involve visitor participation and a personal challenge.

Questions and Criteria

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14

Destination Marketing

This category recognises creativity and innovation in fully integrated destination marketing activity/campaign (international or domestic) to attract visitors to a region/destination.

The campaign can be a single promotional activity or a series of related promotions delivered by one organisation.

The Campaign/Activity should:

  • Demonstrate innovation, creativity, results
  • Attract key target markets of DMO.
  • Include before and after key metrics that show results achieved from the campaign

This category is open to Regional Tourism Organisations, Local Tourist Associations, Visitor Information Centres, local government and marketing alliances delivering consumer marketing campaigns.

Not required to have traded for the entire qualifying period, activity must have occurred during the qualifying period.

Questions and Criteria

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Town Square

15

Tourism Restaurants & Catering Services

This category is open to all restaurants and catering services offering a tourism experience and/or servicing the tourism industry. It is not a food award but does recognise a significant contribution to tourism through the provision of food and beverage. Entry is open–but not limited to– hotel or stand-alone restaurants, event caterers, pubs and cafés.

Questions and Criteria

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William Angliss Institute

16

Tourism Wineries, Distilleries & Breweries

This category recognises wineries, distilleries and boutique breweries that offer a cellar door experience and create a significant contribution to tourism.

Questions and Criteria

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Visit Victoria

17

Caravan & Holiday Parks

This category recognises tourism excellence in a caravan or holiday park. The focus of this award is on both the facilities and services that enhance the tourism experience.

This category is open to caravan or holiday parks that offer cabin and tenting accommodation and meets a 3 – 5 Caravan & Holiday Park Star Rating Standard.

Obtained a Star Rating (Pre-assessment or Final Rating) of 3.5 + in the Caravan Park Category.

Questions and Criteria

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VIC Parks

18

Hosted Accommodation

This category is open to hosted accommodation that offers a bed & breakfast, farm stay, cottage or other intimate accommodation experience and meets a 3 -5 Hosted Accommodation Star Rating Standard.

Serviced apartments, hotels and resorts should consider entry into one of categories 21-24 which best fit their product. For companies that are managing multiple self-contained properties it is recommended they focus on one of their properties or enter the Specialised Tourism Services category as a service provider.

Obtained a Star Rating (Pre-assessment or Final Rating) of 3 + in the Hosted Accommodation Category.

Questions and Criteria

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19

Unique Accommodation

This category recognises tourism excellence in accommodation providing a unique tourism experience that includes an overnight accommodation experience with an included activity. The focus of this award is on the uniqueness of the tourism experience.

This category is open to properties developed around unconventional accommodation infrastructure that includes an activity (passive or active). Entry is open – but not limited to – tented holidays, houseboats, tree houses, underground accommodation and yacht charters. Accommodation must meet a 3 – 5 Star Rating Standard in any Star Rating category.

Questions and Criteria

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20

Self Contained Accommodation

This category recognises tourism excellence in accommodation providing guests with non-serviced accommodation and the freedom of self-sufficiency. The focus of this award is on both the facilities and services that enhance the tourism experience.

This category is open to accommodation that offers a self-catered accommodation experience and meets a 3 -5 Self Catering Accommodation Star Rating Standard.

For companies that are managing multiple self-contained properties it is recommended they focus on one of their properties or enter the Specialised Tourism Services category as a service provider.

Obtained a Star Rating (Pre-assessment or Final Rating) of 3 + in the Self Catering, Hosted, Park Accommodation or Serviced Apartment Accommodation Categories.

Questions and Criteria

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Star Rating

21

Standard Accommodation

This category recognises all types of accommodation. The focus of this award is on both the facilities and services that enhance the tourism experience.

This category is open to accommodation experiences that meets a 3 – 4 Star Rating Standard in any Star Rating category.

Obtained a Star Rating (Pre-assessment or Final Rating) of 3 – 4 in any category.

Questions and Criteria

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The Hotel School new

22

Deluxe Accommodation

This category recognises all types of accommodation. The focus of this award is on both the facilities and services that enhance the tourism experience.

This category is open to accommodation experiences that meets a 4 or 4.5 Star Rating Standard in any Star Rating category.

Obtained a Star Rating (Pre-assessment or Final Rating) of 4 or 4.5 in any category.

Questions and Criteria

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Adroit

23

Luxury Accommodation

This category recognises all types of accommodation. The focus of this award is on both the facilities and services that enhance the tourism experience.

This category is open to accommodation experiences that meets a 5 Star Rating Standard in any Star Rating category.

Obtained a Star Rating (Pre-assessment or Final Rating) of 5 in any category.

Questions and Criteria

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24

New Tourism Business

This category recognises new tourism businesses that have commenced trading, visitation or service delivery during the qualifying period – 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019 (no minimum period of trading is defined though).This award recognises excellence in the planning and development of new tourism infrastructure and/or services. Existing tourism businesses that have commenced a new product or opened new infrastructure need to enter another category most applicable to the business.

Questions and Criteria

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PRIME7

25

Excellence in Food Tourism

This category is open to food producers, providores, tour operators, cooking schools, food attractions, farm gate experiences, farmers’ markets, trails and other food tourism experiences in Victoria, featuring Victorian produce as the core component.

This submission is limited to 8000 words.

Questions and Criteria

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Visit Victoria

26

Tourism Education and Training

This category is open to individual tourism businesses and tourism education and other registered training providers working to raise professional standards within the tourism industry by delivering tourism training, including online.

Questions and Criteria

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Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre

27

Local Government Award for Tourism

This category is open to all local government authorities and recognises excellence in tourism planning, the provision of tourism facilities and services, marketing, event development and management, and the overall contribution made both locally and overall to their State/Territory’s tourism industry.

Questions and Criteria

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VCCI

28

Outstanding Contribution by an Individual

This award recognises the outstanding contribution by an individual to the Victorian tourism industry. Find out more

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Qantas Logo 2016

29

Outstanding Contribution by Volunteers

This award celebrates the strong, ongoing personal commitment made by volunteers who freely give their time and skill, contributing to the professionalism of our industry and the positive image of tourism in Victoria. Find out more

Sponsored by

Visit Victoria

30

Young Achievers Award

This award recognises an individual, less than 35 years of age, working in the tourism industry and their contribution to the development of a vibrant and professional tourism industry. Find out more.

Sponsored by

Visit Victoria

31

Excellence in Accessible Tourism

This category is open to Victorian tourism businesses or attractions delivering tourism products or services that are welcoming for people of all abilities. Entrants must demonstrate how they have developed a tourism experience to become more accessible.

This submission is limited to 8000 words.

Questions and Criteria

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City of Melbourne

32

People's Choice Awards: Best Victorian Tourism Experience or Service

Applicable entrants’ of the RACV Victorian Tourism Awards, who have successfully submitted their entry, will automatically receive entry into the People’s Choice Awards.

General public is invited to vote for their favourite business from the list of nominees, from 01 October to 31 October 2019.

For more information and terms and conditions.

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33

People's Choice Awards: Best Victorian Accommodation Provider

Applicable entrants’ of the RACV Victorian Tourism Awards, who have successfully submitted their entry, will automatically receive entry into the People’s Choice Awards.

General public is invited to vote for their favourite business from the list of nominees, from 01 October to 31 October 2019.

For more information and terms and conditions.

Sponsored by

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