28 July 2006

AHA want a cut of the Floriade action

| johnboy
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The Canberra Times is running a blatant land-grab by the Hotels Association. They want a fee put on Floriade so it can be “better packaged”.

What could be better packaged than something that’s free and anyone can come along to? Why that would be something that’s only free if you buy a package from the AHA’s members!

Gouging mongrels.

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oh no you had to pay!

what else do you expect for free ?

They had a $10 fee for ’98-’99 I think. I turned up and then went away when told I had to pay. Told them where to shove it. Frankly the flowers are not that great year-after-year, maybe once every three years is it a worthwhile thing to see. They scrapped the fee when the number of attendee dropped to less than a half over the previous years approx 162k pax. The Village people were struggling to pay the rent.

Just did a bit of research via Google and they reckon that by 2012 there will be 900,000 visitors to Floriade paying $20 per head entrance fee.

There’s an easy way for floriade to make money, and everyone would be happy!
Remember The Great Bulb Grab? Well, they could make it an annual event, and sell tickets to the spectators. I mean, the running of the bulls at Pamplona is free, and look at the money that generates. This could be similar. They could set up bleachers to the paying customers, and then: Release The Bulb-Grabbers!
I’d pay money to watch it, for sure.

Yep, I’m happy for the government to spend money on entertaining people who aren’t me (I couldn’t care about either Floriade or fireworks). Means that those people leave me alone more…

Maybe I’m just a grumpy recluse.

Floriade has a huge attendance and hotels are booked out during the time it is on.
It isn’t all pensioners, there are vast crowds of families + couples etc.
It is already fenced + had volunteers counting the numbers etc.
Governments should put on the odd free event for their citizens. I’d rather have floriade than endless fireworks.

You probably could get volunteers to collect. Having actually attended Floriade, I happen to know that it is already staffed by volunteers every year who hand out maps, answer questions, etc.

I’ve lived in Canberra 8 years and have attended Floriade maybe 6 of those. Everyone here seems to have forgotten that there actually was a fee to attend Floriade at one point. In my opinion it was grossly inflated – $5 concession, $10 everyone else. I think there were family tickets as well.

The fee system only lasted for about 2 or 3 years. I’m not sure why it was scrapped, but it very well might have been because people stopped going because it seemed way too high a price to pay for a bunch of flowers.

I know that I didn’t attend when there was a fee except for the one year I was working for Ticketek at Floriade and was able to attend for free.

They already have vast numbers of staff standing around tending to the old dears, they also have significant revenues from all the businesses that set up shop inside the precinct over the course of the festival.

You’d need to pay someone to collect it – which I’m guessing would take a fair wedge of it.

Either that or get volunteers…any takers?

Absent Diane12:38 pm 28 Jul 06

what about setting gold coin donations to try and make Flowerfest reasonably self funding.

would something like that be plausible?

Sorry bonfire. That wasn’t fair. My apologies. Need coffee.

Also – on further analysis, I rescind (sp?) my earlier comment about a fee being a good idea.

People are conditioned into thinking that Floriade should be free – so the bleating will be deafening should a fee be levied. Not attractive for a local govt with enough bleating being levied at it already.

Another problem with a fee is that someone has to collect it, and you have to fence off the area for a couple of months. Not to mention the fact you’ll need security to make sure people don’t climb the fences. All of these are expensive.

Suddenly, the cost of Floriade skyrockets. The levied fee hits $5+ to cover the cost of the additional infrastructure. People say “I’m not paying 5 bucks to see some flowers” and attendance plummets. The gubmint abandons the whole shebang as a bad thing and Floriade is no more. The tourism sector takes it in the neck for x-amount-of-dollars.

Probably better we don’t, really.

barking toad11:53 am 28 Jul 06

I doubt if the mayor will be able to resist a fee, even if only a token one, to assist in balancing the budget.

And don’t expect the proceeds to be applied to any purpose other than into general revenue to reduce the deficit.

Guys and girls, could we possibly confine debate to the issues at hand without meta-analysis of long term views or motivations?


you ascribe views to me i dont hold mr shab.

this doesnt aid your no fee case.

if you lie or dissemble on one thing, i can assume you do it on all.

Ahh, the AHA is at it again. I’m sure they can turn Floriade into a lean, mean, cash-makin’ machine. Hahahaha. Excuse me.

Bonfire – I don’t think the fact that the gubmint isn’t charging entry to Floriade is a symptom of them being anti-business. I’d agree that it probably wouldn’t be a bad idea to charge entry to Floriade (provided it was a pretty token fee). Just provided that they don’t take the ridiculous approach of a couple of years ago (i.e the trying to please all of the people all of the time approach).

Floriade, regardless of what the gubmint shells out for it is a “if you build it, they will come”. It’s not going to make squillions of dollars for local business, but maybe – just maybe – there could be an advantage to local business. Perhaps that’s why it hasn’t been quietly scrapped…

But then we go back to your essential view that the government should never spend any money on anything, ever (except police) and the invisible hand of the market will take care of everything else.

As for your argument that Floriade is environmentally unfriendly…maybe. But I’d say the volume of phosphates coming off the Canberra Turf Farm at the eastern end of the lake is a few orders of magnitude greater. Should we shut that down?

Oh wait – that would be anti-business…

Ever heard of the phrase “Got to spend money to make money”?

The only way to ascertain if it truly is a “… flagrant waste of public money” is to run a P&L against the tax collected on the money spent that can be attributed to floriade.

while i dont agree with the aha reason, i do believe that floriade should charge an entrance fee.

i cant think of a more flagrant waste of public money than a pointless and environmentally damaging flower show.

who knows how many tonnes of fertilisers and phosphates get washed into our lakes and rivers so that a few pensioners can goo and gah at the petals of the snowbell gumdrop dahlia.

previous govts have squibbed the fee issue, i have no doubt stanhope will as well.

essentially this govt is anti-business.

It’s aparently a big problem for Canberra Toursim generally – The tour industry seems to function around “commissionable products” where the tour operators get a commission for bringing a bus-load of people to see somthing – but because the great majority of Canberra’s attractions are free, there’s not much incentive – seems the money people pay to get on the bus isn’t enough.

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