Tourism and Events Information for Victoria’s tourism industry

Starting a tourism business

One of the first things you need to know before starting a tourism or accommodation business, is that it is not a 9 to 5 Monday to Friday operation.

If you decide a tourism business is for you, decide on the type of tourism business you want to start and understand the basics of starting a business, such as obtaining licences, permits and insurance.

What to consider

Find out if you’re ready to take the next steps in starting a tourism business.

Ask yourself:

  • have you thoroughly researched potential tourism markets and the level of competition in the area you plan to set up your business?
  • 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 written a business plan, complete with a marketing plan and projected budget?
  • have you investigated insurance costs?
  • are you willing to work long hours?
  • do you have the financial resources to cover start up and living costs until your business becomes profitable?
  • could you survive two to three years before making a profit?

If you've answered 'no' to any of the questions above, it's recommended that you do more research before starting your business.

Visit Business Victoria’s start a business page for more information.

Additional things to consider

Here are some additional things you'll need to think about:

  • Make sure you and your family are ready – the tourism industry is demanding and will probably change your lifestyle.
  • Do your homework and familiarise yourself with 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 anticipate to get things off the ground and to reach break-even, let alone make a profit.
  • Consider whether you like dealing with people of all different types and personalities, and if you could do it every day.
  • Approach the business concept strategically by developing a business plan.

Before starting a business, it's also recommended to seek professional advice. Accountants, solicitors, business advisers, management consultants and experienced tourism staff are resourced to provide objective and realistic advice.

Page last updated: 30 Aug 2023
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