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Date Posted: Fri, Jul 06 2007, 10:11:24pm
The other block to tourism is cost.
Currently, from Melbourne, for AU$1059 I can holiday in Thaland with the following inclusions:
* Return airfare
* 4 nights at a very nice beach lodge
* Breakfast each day
* Trecking tour on Elephants for another AU$54.
What could I get for AU$1059 on a PNG holiday? Not even the airfare. The cheapest return flight to POM is around $1500 on Qantas' Red e Deal. I can get to London and back for $1900. On top of that, I need to get to Wabag which will cost me another AU$500.
So, to get to Wabag will cost me more than to get to London,even on the cheapest fares. Stupid, isn't it!
Then accommodation in PNG is much more expensive than asian locations. Kumul lodge is very nice and fairly reasonable, but places like Ambua lodge are not within reach for many people at AU$350 / night per person for a double room. I can get a room at the best hotel in Melbourne (Crown Towers) for AU$150 pp for a double... see www.wotif.com.au.
I wonder if some people in PNG overestimate how rich the average person is in Australia and the US etc. I wonder if PNG nationals have met many expats on huge wages and think we all have that money to burn.
At present, the tourist market is limited to those willing to pay HUGE prices compared to other holidays they could have.
Yes, there are some of us willing to save up for ages to come, because its worth it to us.. but many more will compare with other countries, and decide its just too expensive.
(I'm coming back, though!!!... when I've saved up)
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