Please note javascript is required for full website functionality.

Latest News

20 May, 2021

Paradise beckons

An exciting new initiative will be announced today, as the Queensland Government steps up to assist the tourism and hospitality industry to find workers in North Queensland.

By Peter McCullagh

CRUZ Coffee Cairns - Gilberto Risa

The new program dubbed Work in Paradise offers $1500 incentives and a travel bonus to workers wishing to move to the North and fill the thousands of hospitality and tourism vacancies.

In announcing the program, the Queensland Premier said the program will address the critical shortage of workers at tourism businesses in regional Queensland.

Key Points

  • Workers in the hospitality industry will be offered $1500 incentive to relocate to Cairns and the Far North to fill vacant positions.
  • There is a relocation/travel incentive of $250 to assist with the process
  • TTNQ will offer $200 experience vouchers to successful workers under the scheme
  • TTNQ and Study Cairns have secured affordable accommodation to assist workers
  • There's an important need for workers with an additional 60 jobs being created each week in the hospitality and tourism industry in the north

“We live in one of the most beautiful places in the world. This campaign will give Queenslanders and other Australians even more reasons to come to work in paradise,” she said.

“Thanks to the way Queenslanders have responded to the pandemic, our economy has started to rebuild.

“But right across regional Queensland, there is strong demand for workers.

“From chefs, waiters and bartenders through to tour guides and deckhands on the Great Barrier Reef, there are plenty of great jobs up for grabs.”

The Premier said the government would deliver a $1500 incentive and free travel for workers taking up a tourism job in regional Queensland from Mackay, north to our tropical hot spots (FNQ) and west of Toowoomba, including the Outback.  

“Grab your friends and take a tourism job to work in paradise – that’s the message we’re sending to thousands of Queensland and Australian jobseekers,” the Premier said.

“Work in Paradise will bring people from across Australia and the state to join Team Queensland to help this critical industry do what they love to do best – give people a great holiday in our great state.

“Competition for workers is at an all-time high in tourism and hospitality and we want to give people the best chance there is to work, play and live in our top travel spots in regional Queensland.”

In Cairns, Gilberto Risa, owner of Cruz Coffee is struggling to find experienced baristas. Since the closure of international borders the supply of good experienced workers had dwindled.

  “I could employ 2 to 3 experienced baristas now if we could find them.  

“I could employ 2 to 3 experienced baristas now if we could find them.

“What COVID has highlighted is the lack of professional training across the hospitality industry. There is an opportunity here in Cairns to create a world-class hospitality training college, capable of training locals and international students and lifting the profile of Cairns as the hospitality and service capital in the Asia Pacific,” he said.

Assistant Tourism Minister and Member for Cairns Michael Healy said Work in Paradise would send a clear message there were thousands of tourism jobs available in Queensland.

“Queensland is the best place to look for a job in paradise – it has location, lifestyle and an exciting tourism industry,” Mr Healy said. 

“While Work in Paradise will connect jobseekers with jobs, it could also provide a pathway to a long-term career in the tourism industry in your dream location.

“There’s an abundance of opportunity when you Work in Paradise.”

The incentive program starts from July 1.

For more information, or to register interest, visit

Most Popular