THE Wimmera and Grampians-based tourism industry is reeling after another snap lockdown, with businesses lamenting the start of another tough week.
Grampians Tourism chief executive Marc Sleeman said the news was extremely disappointing.
"There was a sense that everything's okay and we're all back on track, but this just shows us that we're still in a crisis," Mr Sleeman said.
"We still need to be flexible with our operating environment and take into account future possible lockdowns. We've been communicating with our industry partners and are just making sure that businesses are aware of, um, the requirements for lockdown.
"We've gone through this a couple of times and each of our industry partners have advisors, we've got a system in place now to pick up, particularly for our restaurants and cafes. I think that businesses are more flexible now, um, and better prepared for these future lockdowns.
"I haven't that we've given through, gone through them a couple of times, and I think we're more prepared today than we were in those initial lockdown periods.
"It still hurts. We were talking with one of our wineries who had 300 bookings for this weekend. So the economic impact is going to be significant."
Victoria Tourism Industry Council chief executive Felicia Mariani, said the lockdown effect would be "devastating" for the tourism industry.
"These ongoing lockdowns have delivered death by a thousand cuts for operators in Victoria and indeed across all of Australia. 'Gutted' is an understatement when we consider the financial and emotional impacts of these ongoing blows to the operations of our industry," Ms Mariani said.
"The impacts of these measures will stretch well beyond the seven days of the lockdown period as state borders remain shut well beyond the designated period; consumer confidence is again shaken, affecting their willingness to travel interstate; and wastage of stock in the hospitality sector is overwhelming businesses."
This just shows us that we're still in a crisis.Marc Sleeman
However, Mr Sleeman is more optimistic about the industry's situation, noting that the tourism sector in the Grampians region had been operating at "full capacity" with high levels of visitation most weekends since reopening after previous lockdowns.
Businesses had reported substantial recoveries, Mr Sleeman said, adding he expects companies to bounce back similarly this time.
"All the past indicators show us there is still a significant appetite for our brand of open spaces, nature and consumers' opportunity to connect with that great outdoors," he said.
"While we've gone into lockdown, I don't think this is going to impact too heavily on our future recovery."
However, the lockdown has also impacted Grampians Tourism itself more closely than previous lockdowns.
"Our Grampians conference was scheduled to happen next Wednesday at Ararat town hall," Mr Sleeman said.
"A hundred people were registered to attend, and we had guest speakers flying in from both Tasmania and New South Wales. We've been working really quick, really fast behind the scenes, trying to get that back on track for a date in September."
Mr Sleeman said visitor information centres across the region would remain open during the lockdown.
"We'll be continuing having those facilities open for visitors to make sure that the people that have been either stranded, or may be unaware of the lockdowns, have got someone that they can actually talk to," he said.
"We hope that we'll be able to still maintain, a certain level of visitor experience for the people that have existing bookings and are locked down here."