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Sunday, January 22, 2006

Jump In Bookings To Mark Spirit III Second Anniversary - Bryan Green, MHA - Tasmanian Government Media Releases

Jump In Bookings To Mark Spirit III Second Anniversary - Bryan Green, MHA - Tasmanian Government Media Releases: "

Spirit of Tasmania III has marked its second full year of operation with a dramatic boost in bookings.

The Minister responsible for the TT Line, Bryan Green, said this month had marked Spirit III’s second anniversary on the Devonport to Sydney run.

“After a slow start to bookings and competition from cut price airlines the trend for Spirit III is extremely positive.

“So much so that TT-Line has scheduled extra sailings for Spirit III to meet demand.

“Bookings on Spirit III to the 30th June of this year are now over 61,000 compared to 59,524 for the entire 2004/2005 financial year.

“They are 58% over what they were at the same time last year, meaning TT-Line can look confidently to meeting its budgeted number of 87,520 passengers for this financial year.”

Mr Green said this month’s milestone for Spirit III has demonstrated the State Labor Government have made the right decision to purchase the ship in the first place and give it a real chance to crack the Sydney market.

“Over the past two years Spirit III has carried more than 132,000 passengers to and from Tasmania.

“That means about 49,000 extra mainland visitors have been bought to Tasmania injecting $132.3 million into the State economy

“On top of this are monies spent by TT-Line on goods and services and the wages of Spirit III’s 200 Tasmanian employees which only adds to the crucial role the ship plays in the local economy.”

Mr Green said this month has also been positive for all three Spirit of Tasmania vessels.

“Total passengers carried on the Melbourne and Sydney routes have exceeded last January’s result which is very pleasing.

“Bookings for the Melbourne to Devonport route have continued to improve with new marketing activity.”

Mr Green called on the Tasmanian Greens to abandon their policy to sell Spirit III in light of its success.

“The Greens spruik support for the tourism industry but their policy betrays that position.

“Its about time they lived up to their rhetoric and showed real support for Tasmania’s tourism industry, its 40,000 employees and the 200 Tasmanians who are directly employed by Spirit III.

“I say to Ms Putt and her colleagues, there is no shame in admitting ‘we were wrong’,” he said.

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