Regional Tourism Activation Fund FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Regional Tourism Activation Fund?

The NSW Government’s Regional Tourism Activation Fund will fund projects that accelerate the development of new and enhanced tourism infrastructure that provides visitors with unique and high impact experiences while visiting regional NSW.

How much funding is available across regional NSW?

$30 million has been allocated to the Regional Tourism Activation Fund from the NSW Government’s $2 billion Regional Growth Fund.

What types of projects can access funding support?

The types of projects eligible for funding include:

  • construction of new tourism infrastructure and/or significant enhancements to existing infrastructure to create unique and high impact visitor experiences
  • upgrades and extensions to existing infrastructure to improve accessibility and inclusion linked to unique and high impact visitor experiences.
Who can apply for funding?

The $30 million fund will be open to local councils, Joint Organisations, Local Aboriginal Land Councils, non-government organisations and community organisations.  Applicants must be financially solvent, an incorporated entity and hold an Australian Business Number (ABN), Australian Company Number (ACN) or be registered with NSW Fair Trading under the Associations Incorporation Act 2009 or another Act. Unincorporated organisations are ineligible to apply.

Are private businesses eligible to apply for this funding?

No, private businesses that operate for profit are not eligible to apply for the Regional Tourism Activation Fund. Private businesses can partner with an eligible entity and the eligible entity can submit an application as the lead applicant.

What is a non-government organisation?

A non-government organisation is a not-for-profit organisation that operates independently of any government.

What activities will the funding support?

Eligible applicants will be able to apply for funding under two streams:

Stream One – Unique and High Impact Visitor Experiences. A minimum of $200,000 up to a maximum of $5 million will be available for projects that accelerate the delivery of new or enhanced tourism infrastructure projects that will strengthen the local tourism industry and deliver economic benefits in regional NSW.

Stream Two – Visitor Accessibility and Inclusion Enhancements. A minimum of $50,000 up to a maximum of $500,000 will be available for projects that encourage inclusive tourism by improving accessibility and inclusion for people with disability at regional tourism destinations and visitor experiences.

Can the funding be used to develop a business case for a project that will be developed in the future?

No, the funding  must be used for the construction of new or enhanced tourism infrastructure and / or upgrades to improve accessibility and inclusion at unique and high impact visitor experiences.

Do I need to make a co-contribution to apply for this funding?

Applications for funding from Stream One must have a minimum financial co-contribution of 25 per cent of the total grant amount. Co-contributions must be a direct financial contribution and cannot be made in-kind.

Applications for Stream Two do not require a minimum co-contribution and can apply for 100 per cent of the project cost; however, applicants are strongly encouraged to make a financial co-contribution to their projects.

Can I use NSW Government funding to put towards my co-contribution?

No, co-contributions cannot be made using other funding received from the NSW Government. Projects should seek to maximise investment from the applicant, the Commonwealth Government and/or other industry contributions where possible.

I’m looking to expand an existing tourism experience to make it bigger and better and would like to include improvements to the accessibility and visitor experience for people with a disability. Can I apply for both streams of funding?

Yes, applicants can apply to both Stream One and Two if their project includes specific accessibility enhancements as part of a broader visitor experience project. Applications to both Stream One and Two will be considered and assessed as a project package.

I’m looking to develop a new visitor experience however I haven’t allowed for improvements to accessibility for people with a disability, can I still apply to Stream One?

Yes, however all applicants are encouraged to strongly consider inclusive tourism and the visitor experience of people with disabilities.

Can the funding be used for promotions and marketing of the infrastructure after it is completed?

No, the funding must be specific to the development of the infrastructure and the project needs to be operated and maintained without the need for additional funding from the NSW Government once construction is complete. A list of ineligible projects and project costs is provided within the Program Guidelines.

How do I demonstrate that my project is unique and high impact?

Applicants will be required to demonstrate that their project is unique and high impact by providing:

  • key visitation data, including forecasted annual visitation and the forecasted expenditure per visitor to generate a value per visitor analysis
  • a data sheet to inform a Cost Benefit Analysis
  • letters of support from the relevant Destination Network and/or local tourism organisations that support the claim of uniqueness and high impact.
What is the deadline to submit my application?

The program will open for funding applications from Wednesday, 16 June 2021 and will close at 12pm on Wednesday, 11 August 2021. Successful projects will be announced from early 2022 and projects are required to be completed by 30 June 2023.

When does my project need to be completed by?

Applications must demonstrate the project will be completed by 30 June 2023 by providing a detailed scope of works, key milestones and previous project management records including the experience/credentials of key personnel.

The project I’m seeking to apply for is in the process of being considered for development application approval, and pending approval it will be completed by June 30, 2023. Am I eligible to apply?

Yes. You will be required to demonstrate within your application that the project is ready to commence on receipt of the development approval and that it will be completed by 30 June 2023.

Can tourism businesses partner with their local council or another eligible entity to apply for funding?

Public/private partnerships are eligible to apply where the lead applicant is an eligible public entity and clear public benefit can be demonstrated. The public entity will be solely responsible for the project's delivery and reporting through a funding deed.

Can the project be located on privately owned land?

Projects can be located on publicly owned land or on private land where there is a clear public benefit.

Is there support available to help me with my funding application?

Yes, a range of resources and tools will be made available on this webpage to support potential applicants with their submissions, including a recorded information webinar.

Staff from the Department of Regional NSW will also be available to support applicants with their applications. Please contact or call 1300 679 673 to access this support.

How do I know if my project is located within one of the eligible local government areas?

Projects must be located in one of the 93 regional NSW Local Government Areas (LGAs), the Unincorporated Far West or Lord Howe Island. Projects delivered in the Greater Sydney metropolitan area, and the Newcastle and Wollongong LGAs are ineligible for funding. The eligible LGAs are as follows:


Albury City Council

Armidale Regional Council

Ballina Shire Council

Balranald Shire Council

Bathurst Regional Council

Bega Valley Shire Council

Bellingen Shire Council

Berrigan Shire Council

Bland Shire Council

Blayney Shire Council

Bogan Shire Council

Bourke Shire Council

Brewarrina Shire Council

Broken Hill City Council

Byron Shire Council

Cabonne Council

Carrathool Shire Council

Central Coast Council

Central Darling Shire Council

Cessnock City Council

Clarence Valley Council

Cobar Shire Council

Coffs Harbour City Council

Coolamon Shire Council

Coonamble Shire Council

Cootamundra-Gundagai Regional Council

Cowra Shire Council

Dubbo Regional Council

Dungog Shire Council

Edward River Council

Eurobodalla Shire Council

Federation Council

Forbes Shire Council

Gilgandra Shire Council

Glen Innes Severn Council

Goulburn Mulwaree Council

Greater Hume Shire Council

Griffith City Council

Gunnedah Shire Council

Gwydir Shire Council

Hay Shire Council

Hilltops Council

Inverell Shire Council

Junee Shire Council

Kempsey Shire Council

Kiama Municipal Council

Kyogle Council

Lachlan Shire Council

Lake Macquarie City Council

Leeton Shire Council

Lismore City Council

Lithgow Council, City of

Liverpool Plains Shire Council

Lockhart Shire Council

Maitland City Council

Mid-Coast Council

Mid-Western Regional Council

Moree Plains Shire Council

Murray River Council

Murrumbidgee Council

Muswellbrook Shire Council

Nambucca Valley Council

Narrabri Shire Council

Narrandera Shire Council

Narromine Shire Council

Oberon Council

Orange City Council

Parkes Shire Council

Port Macquarie-Hastings Council

Port Stephens Council

Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council

Richmond Valley Council

Shellharbour City Council

Shoalhaven City Council

Singleton Council

Snowy Monaro Regional Council

Snowy Valleys Council

Tamworth Regional Council

Temora Shire Council

Tenterfield Shire Council

Tweed Shire Council

Upper Hunter Shire Council

Upper Lachlan Shire Council

Uralla Shire Council

Wagga Wagga City Council

Walcha Council

Walgett Shire Council

Warren Shire Council

Warrumbungle Shire Council

Weddin Shire Council

Wentworth Shire Council

Wingecarribee Shire Council

Yass Valley Council

Unincorporated Far West Region

Lord Howe Island

When will I know if my application has been successful?

Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application from early 2022. Unsuccessful applications will be offered an opportunity for feedback on their application.

Should I attach letters of support from the Destination Network and/or the local tourism organisation?

Yes, applicants are encouraged to consult with their Destination Network and other local stakeholders and to include letters of support with their applications

Who can I contact?
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