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200,000 Aussies score $200 hit

·2-min read
A man counting Australian dollar bills. A picture that describes buying, paying, handing out money, or showing money.
Image: Getty

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Melbourne has struggled through three lockdowns, with the state government now sending $200 vouchers to Victorians to encourage them to spend up in the state capital.

The Victorian government has added $10 million to the travel voucher scheme, opening up 40,000 vouchers worth $200. These vouchers need to be used for attractions and travel within greater Melbourne.

That’s in addition to another 10,000 vouchers added to the regional Victoria scheme. Combined, the government will issue a total of 200,000 vouchers.

Victorian adult residents are eligible to apply for the scheme, however vouchers are limited to one per household.

Under the scheme, Victorians can claim back $200 from the government provided they have spent at least $400 on accomodation, tours, attractions or experiences, for at least two nights in paid accommodation in regional Victoria, the Mornington Peninsula, the Yarra and Dandenong Ranges. Now, that criteria will be increased to include greater Melbourne.

The next round of vouchers will open on 30 March 2021 at 10am for travel from 6 April to 31 May, with more information on the latest round to be published on the government website in the days to come. 

To apply, Victorians need to submit a registration online. They may also be subjected to an audit and will need to show evidence that they have used the grant in the way it was required. 

The Minister for Industry Support and Recovery Martin Pakula also announced $143 million in funding to help Victorian businesses like florists, hairdressers, restaurants and accommodation providers.

Within that, $92 million will be funnelled into $2,000 support packages for eligible businesses under the Business Costs Assistance Program.

And $24.9 million will go to the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund, giving previous recipients of the grant an automatic $3,000 payment.

There will also be $16.2 million put to the Victorian Accommodation Support Program to support businesses that suffered from cancellation, with businesses receiving up to $4,500.

“Victorian businesses played their part in the circuit breaker action and this package recognises that the impact for many was severe,” Pakula said.

“We know it hurt businesses to shut their doors, but the long-term benefits are clear. A temporary pause has meant businesses can now get on with their rebuilding – with our full support.”

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