Wednesday, 6th April, 2022

Tourism Kick-start Fund Now Open

Applications to the Tourism Kick-start Fund are now open. This $49 million Fund is aimed at helping businesses in the five hardest-hit regions prepare for the return of international visitors. The opening of the Fund is linked to the border re-opening mid-April for vaccinated Australian citizens and early May for vaccinated visa waiver countries.

This fund offers tourism related businesses, that have seen a drop in income from Covid-19 of 50% or more, eligible for a grant that equates to 2 weeks of pre-covid revenue (minimum $10k – max $50k). The grant is designed to help businesses ‘scale up’ for the return of international visitors and can be used to recruit and train staff, invest in marketing and undertake repairs and maintenance that are needed to scale-up.

Find out more

You will find a Tourism Kick-start Fund Guide for Applicants and Kick-start Q&As here.

The guide covers important information including

  • Introduction to the Fund
  • Eligibility criteria
  • Information (including what the funds can and can’t be spent on)
  • Evidence you are required to provide in support of your application


Already registered with Regional Business Partners (RBP)?

For Queenstown Lakes District businesses who have already registered with Regional Business Partners, had a discovery session with a Growth Advisor and been assessed as likely eligible, please begin gathering the evidence required. You will receive an application form by email from your RBP Growth Advisor today. If not received please check your spam folder.

Haven't registered but think you might be eligible?

For Queenstown Lakes District businesses who believe they may be eligible and who are yet to register with Regional Business Partners, please register here. A Growth Advisor will be in contact with you to pre-assess your eligibility. If likely eligible you will receive an application form by email from your RBP Growth Advisor.

What happens after the application process?

Once complete, applications will be submitted to an independent accounting firm (the decision-maker) who will, using your application and supporting documentation determine your eligibility against the criteria. Please allow 10 working days for your application to be reviewed.  Payment will be made within 10 working days from the day your application was approved (or at an agreed later date if you have indicated you are not scaling up your business immediately).

QLDC is the lead entity for distribution of this funding. It has contracted Regional Business Partners (run in Otago by Business South) to be the point of contact for businesses, and a separate contractor to assess applications. The QLDC finance team distribute the funding to businesses once applications have been approved.