Events Planning

The information on this page will assist you to hold a successful major or regional event in Tropical North Queensland. You can also download the information as a .pdf below.

Tourism Tropical North Queensland regards events as an excellent destination marketing tool however they need to provide a return on investment for the region and be sustainable. The following areas are assessed for each event:

1. Contribution to the TNQ economy
2. Attracting visitors to TNQ
3. Enhancing the profile of TNQ
4. Fostering community pride
5. Demonstrating future growth and sustainability
6. Contribution to a balanced events portfolio
7. Demonstrating no adverse environmental impact

Other areas such as increased sports participation, trade relations or awareness of cultural customers will be used where appropriate.

Key Stakeholders

Tourism Tropical North Queensland

As the destination’s regional tourism organisation, TTNQ is responsible for the attraction and acquisition of events and for providing support with marketing activities that increase attendance and length of stay. TTNQ works with several stakeholders to achieve visitation targets and ensure the successful delivery of events in Tropical North Queensland.

Tourism and Events Queensland (TEQ)

Provide funding for business, hallmark, major and regional events on an application basis that achieves state outcomes. Offer marketing opportunities under the “It’s Live” brand and event optimisation activities for certain events.

Other Government Agencies

Events may be supported through other government programs such as Arts Queensland, National Parks, Sport & Racing or Gambling Community Benefit Funds.

Local Governments

Provide funding (both cash and in-kind support) on an application basis, often through competitive funding rounds. One-off applications are accepted for hallmark and major events. Offer an extensive range of venues and infrastructure and have a lead role in the facilitation of license and permit requirements. Can assist with community engagement activities.

Event Owner

Responsible for event delivery, including operations and marketing, as well as associated financial risks


Depending on the event, a range of grants and assistance may be available from local, state and federal bodies. Event committees should not be reliant on the grant funding to run their event. The event should be sustainable and outcomes and objectives achieved without additional funding. The boost a grant may give the event is to add value to activities the event organisers are already undertaking.

Queensland Destination Events Program

The Queensland Destination Events Program (QDEP), seeks to leverage the crucial link between events and the destination. The aims and objectives of QDEP are:
– Generate local economic activity and development in the host destination
– Attract external visitation to the destination
– Drive social and community outcomes for the host destination, noting the important link between community outcomes and economic benefits
– Enhance the profile and appeal of the host destination

QDEP offers two funding options for regional events:
– Destination event funding; single-year funding for developing events seeking growth ($10k – $25k)
– Significant event funding; a single year or up to 3 years of funding for events that can demonstrate a strong track record of growth or growth potential ($25k – $100k)

The funding can be used for marketing, strategic plan development, engagement of short-term specialised personnel and hiring temporary infrastructure. Find out more.

Local Council Grants

Check with your local council to see if they have a Community Grant. You can find your local council under Key Contacts.

Arts Queensland Grants

Check with Arts Queensland for a range of grants for arts and cultural events.

Imagery & Video

Image Library

Bring your event to life with images and videos of Tropical North Queensland, a region fringed by reef, enveloped by rainforest and ringed by the red-dirt of the Outback.

Register your event to use free imagery from our media library Create a profile, wait for approval and then gain access to the online gallery. Approval is a manual process, however, it shouldn’t take more than 24 hours for the team to action.

All images are to be credited to Tourism Tropical North Queensland or the photographer (if there is one). It’s important that you read the terms and conditions prior to registering.

Tourism and Events Queensland have access to a wide variety of images and video of Tropical North Queensland in their visual gallery and we’d also encourage you to visit their site and register to access their assets.

For access to our B Roll Footage, please contact us to receive the dropbox link.


In our marketing activity, we use Cairns & Great Barrier Reef as the locator for the region, not Tropical North Queensland. The ‘Cairns & Great Barrier Reef’ destination logo should be used to promote events to visitors.

‘It’s Live in Queensland’ is the marketing banner and online calendar for the state tourism organisation, Tourism & Events Queensland. It should be incorporated into event marketing for events supported by Tourism & Events Queensland.

Attendee Welcome

City dressing or event branding creates a vibrant event atmosphere in the destination and positively contributes to both the visitor experience and local community pride. It is an effective tool for raising awareness of major and regional events and provides a great first impression for visitors arriving into the region. Your local council can advise how best this can be done in your area.

This could include:

  • Branded banners on light poles on main streets surrounding your event venue
  • Billboard or roadside signage
  • Digital signage on large screens positioned around the city (in Cairns, these are booked directly with the screen owners)
  • Digital signage at the Cairns Airport (or a regional one) welcoming your guests and athletes (this is booked directly with the Airport)
  • Triangular corflute bollards that wrap around street poles

Temporary Fence Signage
TTNQ can also supply up to 300m of mesh fence scrim that is dark green with white ‘Cairns & Great Barrier Reef’ logo on each piece. This is great to cover temporary fencing, to create privacy for your event, or to assist with attendee traffic flow. Each piece needs to be zip-tied to a chain-link fence or similar.

Australian Tourism Data Warehouse

List your upcoming event on the Australian Tourism Data Warehouse (ATDW) for free. To list your event you must first register as a user of ATDW-Online by creating an account to manage your ATDW listing.

Eligible events must provide a direct service or experience to the leisure tourist and fall under one of the following classifications:
– Exhibitions and shows: including agricultural, local and regional shows and motor shows.
– Festivals and celebrations: including seasonal, sporting, cultural, music or art festivals.
– Markets: including food markets and farmers markets.
– Performances: including song, dance and theatre.
– Sporting events: both spectator and participatory.
– Classes, lessons, workshops: including arts/crafts, dance, music, painting, pottery, cooking.
– Business
– Community

What’s In It For My Event?

– Distribute your event on, and
– Feature on the and’s events calendar.
– ATDW automatically updates over 200 distributor websites on your behalf.
– Maintain your own listing online and update at any time.
– Participate in Tourism and Events Queensland’s online and cooperative advertising campaigns.
– Inclusion in the This is Queensland Application for iPhone and Android devices.
– ATDW website performance reports showing top-page views, keywords and the most popular distributor websites. 

Promoting Your Event

TTNQ can assist to promote your event to attract visitors to the region, to increase the length of a visitor’s stay, or to encourage them to spend more during their stay. We do this by amplifying your existing marketing activities. This can be done through many different avenues.

Destination Website

Our award-winning destination website, targets visitors to the region. The event calendar on the website lists events that are suitable to:

  • attract a visitor to the region, or
  • entice a visitor to extend their time in the region, or
  • be a highlight of a visitor’s experience here.

Social Media

  • Facebook: Explore Tropical North Queensland, @tropicalnorthqueensland, 210k followers
  • Instagram: @tropicalnorthqueensland, #exploreTNQ, #explorecairnsGBR, 189k followers
  • Twitter: @CairnsGBR, 20k followers

To have your major or regional event featured on our social media channels, please provide high-quality content. This includes an image or short video (30sec), a carefully crafted caption, and a call-to-action ie. link to your website or contact details. The image or video should highlight the experience an attendee would have whilst here for an event.


We can provide content on the destination for your participant handbook, website, or newsletters to entice visitation to the region or encourage those already attending, to extend their time here.

It’s Live in TNQ Newsletter

The “It’s Live in TNQ” is a dedicated events newsletter emailed each month to our members. The events listed in this eDM are replicated from our Event Calendar listed on the Destination website. It also contains information on Cruise Ships in the region and events being held at the Cairns Convention Centre.

Publicity & Media Coverage

If your event has reached its potential in terms of attracting visitation to the region and selling tickets, you can concentrate on increasing the level of impact your event has. This can be done with publicity and media coverage for your event, your stakeholders and the region.

High-profile attendees and media access can assist with getting coverage for your event and can generate demand for tickets for the following years, allowing your event to grow, increase ticket prices, create tiered ticketing packages, attract higher-level sponsorships, and so on.

Influencer Campaigns

  • Working with influencers to create hype around your event and generate content for future use, is a great way to increase your event’s contribution to the region. TTNQ can assist with coordinating an influencer’s itinerary. Influencers should:
  • Post daily stories on their social channels of each experience they visit within their itinerary
  • Share three posts on Instagram and Facebook (carousels, reels or single static posts within 30 days of the event)
  • Tag your event accounts plus @tropicalnorthqueensland and use your event hashtags plus #explorecairnsGBR or #exploreTNQ
  • Tag the operators and suppliers featured in their experiences
  • Produce content that is aligned with your event aesthetic as well as to our brand look, feel and language where possible (and natural)

TTNQ Contribution

TTNQ can assist with coordinating a media or influencer visit to attend your event. Please contact us with your proposal and include the type of media/influencer you wish to attract, an example itinerary showing why the itinerary would be attractive to media/influencer, the objectives of the visit, and the investment required from TTNQ or other stakeholders.

Media visits and influencer campaign opportunities will be evaluated based on the potential return on investment through reach and engagement.

Evaluating Your Event

Do you need event statistics for funding stakeholders? Not only can event statistics help to secure funding, but you can make important decisions based on them rather than guesswork. 


IER provides evaluations of the economic impact generated by your event. This is essential to be able to provide statistics to funding stakeholders to secure future support, it identifies areas of growth and provides an overall snapshot of your event. When you engage IER to evaluate your event, you receive a report, that provides statistics on the following:
– Attendance
– Demographic profile
– Visitor origins
– Primary purpose of visitors
– Direct visitor nights
– Net promoter score
– Community pride

If you need assistance to engage IER or a similar company, please contact us.