New trend west on annual school trips

Kangaroo Bus Lines has jumped at the chance to take schools to ‘the outback’ as part of a Tourism Queensland campaign to head west – not south – on annual school excursions

New trend west on annual school trips
New trend west on annual school trips

By David Goeldner | September 17, 2010

Forget the Sydney – Canberra trip, Queensland’s school kids are going west for their annual end-of-year excursions, and three schools head that way soon as winners of Tourism Queensland’s ‘Outback Adventure’.

Kangaroo Bus Lines will escort 15 kids from Wellers Hill, Arundel and Gympie West primary schools on a seven-day adventure in October to Longreach, Winton and Lark Quarry.

The prize winners were announced this week by Queensland Tourism Minister Peter Lawlor, saying the aim is to increase school students' awareness of Queensland's Outback.

"As part of the competition Queensland state schools were encouraged to form teams of five students and submit a 'pitch' or audio-video presentation detailing what you would expect to see in Queensland's Outback," Lawlor says.

Kangaroo Bus Lines was selected as the coach operator based on the company’s Tourism Queensland connection and previous experience in safari-style excursions.

"We have been working quite closely with Tourism Queensland for a couple of years in developing educational safaris to the Queensland outback," Kangaroo Bus Lines Business Development Manager Andrea Price says.

"We have been pushing that as an option for schools, as opposed to the standard Brisbane – Sydney – Canberra trip."

Price says most of Kangaroo’s western Queensland charter work is schools-based, but this is the first time they will head west as part of a school’s prize.

"It’s a great opportunity – we have done this style of trip for schools many times before, but not as a competition prize," says Price.

"We are hoping it will branch out into more recognition of the types of services offered in conjunction with school trips."

Price says Kangaroo Bus Lines will use a 53-seat, fully seat-belted Denning Coach for the October safari.

She says the coach is less than five years old, and is equipped with TV, DVD and iPod connections.

"We will have our own cook with us and a fully-equipped safari trailer.

"We supply all of the camping equipment, tents, tables, chairs – the kids and teachers just need to bring themselves and their own sleeping gear."

Price says only the most experienced drivers are assigned to outback safari tours.

"Our safari drivers are all experienced with the Queensland outback and outback conditions," she says.

"There’s a possibility we will send a host along with the trip to represent the company and work with the team."

The tour is supported by Tourism Queensland and the Outback Queensland Tourism Association, and departs Brisbane on October 10.

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