By Sally Heathcote
Did you receive a Dine and Discover NSW Voucher? Don’t forget they expire on Thursday, 30 June and there will be no extensions and will not be redeemable for cash.
The vouchers were first launched during the pandemic in 2021 to encourage the community to get out and about to support those hospitality, tourism and entertainment businesses hardest hit by lockdowns and border closures. Under the scheme, eligible NSW residents could receive six $25 vouchers for dining, entertainment and recreation activities.
The vouchers were enthusiastically taken up and up to last weekend, almost 20 million vouchers, equivalent to $500 million, had been used to increase spending across the State. However, 13 million vouchers remain unused and will be worthless when they expire on Thursday.
In Broken Hill, thirty-one hospitality venues and thirteen entertainment centres are registered as participating businesses.
These include big clubs like the Musicians and the Sturt, many cafes, Outback Astronomy, and the Silver City Cinema.
Linda from Outback Astronomy told the Barrier Truth that there had been a constant stream of visitors using their vouchers since their introduction.
Still, she has noticed a recent flurry as people make last-minute bookings to use their vouchers before they expire.
She said that whilst the majority of their visitors come from metropolitan Sydney or regional areas, they have been very happy to welcome an increased number of local families who have taken advantage of the vouchers to explore attractions closer to home.
Lee Cecchin from the Old Saltbush also registered her restaurant as a voucher provider and whilst there were a few administrative problems in the very early days of the program, she is very happy with the impact it has made on her business as a relative newcomer to the Broken Hill restaurant scene.
She has had a number of enquiries from people wishing to extend the expiry date, but the message from Services NSW is quite clear, all vouchers will end on 30 June.
So if you were lucky enough to get a voucher, don’t miss the opportunity to support local businesses and at the same time, stretch your family budget this week.
For more information about where you can use yours, go to the Services NSW website where you applied for the voucher and enter Broken Hill in the location finder for a complete list.