Starting a tourism business

The basics
Am I ready to take the next step?
Accreditation
Seek advice
Planning for growth

Should you have any business development queries or require further assistance, please contact Tourism Victoria's Product Development team by filling in the information form.

The basics

  • Make sure you and your family are ready – this industry has a demanding set of skills that will probably change your lifestyle
  • Do your homework and know your local, state and federal requirements
  • Ensure that you're appropriately insured as a tourism business
  • Good tourism and accommodation businesses are always changing and growing; undertake all relevant research
  • Be adequately resourced. It will take longer than you think to get things off the ground and to reach break-even, let alone make a profit
  • Do you like dealing with people of all different types and personalities? Could you do it every day?
  • Approach the business concept strategically; develop a business plan.

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Am I ready to take the next step?

Running an tourism or accommodation business is definitely not a nine-to-five job. How ready are you to take the next step? Answer either yes or no for the following:

  • Have you thoroughly researched potential tourism markets and the level of competition in the area you plan to set up your business?
  • Are you willing to work long hours? Tourism is not a 9–5, Monday–Friday industry?
  • Have you had discussions with your local council and are you sure a planning permit will be approved for your proposed development?
  • Have you investigated the local, state and federal licences and registrations that could be relevant to your business? Have you investigated insurance costs?
  • Do you have the financial resources to cover start up and living costs until your business becomes profitable? Could you survive 2–3 years before making a profit?
  • Have you written a business plan, complete with a marketing plan and projected budget?

If you answered 'No' to any of the questions above, it is recommended that further research is undertaken before commencing your business. Start by visiting the Business Victoria website External link

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From reaching your decision to insurance, get the specifics about your chosen business type.

Koala at Healesville Sanctuary

Accreditation

Accreditation is a set of industry standards established by the tourism industry to a model for better business practice and customer service. In other words, accreditation provides business operators with a guide or outline of industry requirements to help them plan, develop, improve and document their business practices and procedures.

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Seek advice

Professional advice sought at this stage can save money and heartache down the track. Accountants, solicitors, business advisors, management consultants and experienced tourism staff can be sourced to provide objective and realistic advice. Don't let your heart rule your head!

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Planning for growth

Once you're established, you need to plan for growth. Use the following contacts list to plan and develop an outstanding Victorian accommodation business.

Tourism Victoria's online tourism excellence modules will also be an invaluable source of information as you proceed down the path to profitability.

View all the Tourism Excellence modules External link
View module 3 – Business Excellence External link

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Last Updated 20th February 2013