Tourism promotion to reward `local hosts'

A TOURISM initiative designed to bring pride back into the industry in Northern Tasmania will be launched this weekend.

Tourism Northern Tasmania's Local Host promotion will reward Northern Tasmanians and their guests this summer by giving them discounts for various items and activities in the region.

Chief executive Chris Griffin said about 30 businesses had signed up so far.

"Locals who bring their visitors to participating businesses need only to show their driver's licence with a Northern postcode to redeem TNT Local Host offers," Mr Griffin said yesterday.

"This promotion is designed to give ideas and incentives to locals wanting to share our great region with their friends and family coming to visit.

"Our industry recognises the invaluable role the community plays in supporting tourism through their people in our place.

"This is especially evident during the holiday period when we all have visitors come to stay."

Last financial year, Mr Griffin said 295,000, or 30per cent, of visitors came to Tasmania to visit friends and family - up by 18per cent on the previous year.

Tamar River Cruises will offer discounted fares to those accompanied by a local; there will be free entry to Woolmers Estate; and Leaning Church Vineyard will offer discounted wines, to name a few deals.

Mr Griffin said the concept was used in Dunedin, New Zealand, 20 years ago and he hoped the project would continue in the North during school holidays.

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