Wimmera residents are being asked to "holiday at home" - and bring along their family and friends - by Grampians businesses faced with million-dollar losses after a drop in visitor numbers due to bushfire coverage.
A tactical advertising campaign costing up to $50,000 will be launched by Grampians Tourism promoting the diversity of tourism options in the area.
Grampians Tourism chief executive Marc Sleeman said the campaign was in response to a rise in booking cancellations and a slow down of future bookings - particularly from international tourists.
He said tourism injected more than $533 million into the Grampians economy, supported more than 1,000 local business and more than 3,000 local jobs.
"Looking at trends already about 30 per cent of visits to the Grampians are reportedly people visiting their friends and family," he said.
"So it felt like a natural easy short-term solution that we would encourage people who live here to invite their friends and family to visit."
Mr Sleeman said Grampians Tourism would be redirecting $40,000-$50,000 in funds from their winter marketing budget to the campaign.
"We will be launching digital, radio, print and social media ads," he said. "We need to remind people that the Grampians are here and we are more than a national park.
"We have wineries, waterfalls, lakes, horse riding and lots of eateries, plus events coming up like Grampians Music Festival and the Grampians Grape Escape."
Mr Sleeman said Visit Victoria had reallocated money to support the region, and he was in contact with industry bodies from other destinations in the state who were experiencing similar issues.
"The loss from the downturn in summer trade is going to run into the millions," he said.
Mr Sleeman said the Grampians National Park was open but urged visitors to continue to check the Grampians Tourism website for closures and risks as the bushfire season continued.
Visit Victoria chief executive Brendan McClements said in a statement that industry was ensuring all regional destinations were supported at this difficult time.
"In the weeks and months to come, our priority will be to ensure communities, visitors and tourism operators who have been affected by the bushfires are supported, as well as continuing to support other regions which have not been impacted," he said.
"While some parts of the state are experiencing challenging conditions, many regional destinations have not been impacted and are welcoming visitors.
"This includes Ballarat, Bendigo, Beechworth, the Great Ocean Road, Phillip Island, the Mornington Peninsula, Yarra Valley, Dandenong Ranges, the Grampians, Daylesford, Geelong and the Bellarine Peninsula, the Murray region and West and South Gippsland, including Wilsons Promontory."
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