The Adelaide Hills Visitor Information Centre in Hahndorf is set to shut in January.
Mount Barker Council has decided to close the facility and redirect funds into digital services instead.
Mt Barker Council’s General Manager Planning and Infrastructure, Marc Voortman said a major reason for the closure is due to an increase in tourists opting to use the internet for holiday planning and booking instead of using face-to-face services.
“Advances in technology have led to a significant change in visitor behaviour, with the overwhelming majority of tourists relying on online platforms for accommodation and tour bookings, as well as itinerary planning. This shift has placed traditional Visitor Information Centre models under scrutiny, with many councils reevaluating their services in favour of online offerings.”
He has also cited ongoing volunteer shortages, a lack of industry support, and the increasing need for facility renewal as reasons for the imminent closure.
Pop-up visitor information services may be used during peak tourism periods and major events in future, until a decision is made on alternative models.
Leading up to the decision to close the centre, the council engaged with stakeholders from the Hahndorf Business and Traders Association, Adelaide Hills Tourism (AHT), the South Australian Tourism Commission (SATC), the Tourism Industry Council of South Australia (TICSA), and AHVIC Volunteers.