Eager vacationers have virtually stripped Rottnest Island of all its Christmas accommodations, with barely a single spot available with eight months to go.
Desperate travelers were forced to sit in long virtual queues, along with thousands of others, on the island’s website yesterday after the Rottnest Island Authority officially opened for Christmas bookings .
Once people finally got through, almost all of the cabins, cabins, cabins, and campsites have been booked for December.
Key dates, including Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and the entire period from December 27 to 31, are full.
All that is left on Boxing Day is one campsite.
A spokesperson for the Rottnest Island Authority confirmed that 1,444 bookings were made yesterday, a three-fold increase from last Christmas.
A technical failure on the island’s website yesterday added to the woes of some travelers. A spokesperson for Rottnest Island Authority confirmed there was a “small problem at the point of entry” resulting in a 30-minute outage, resulting in long queues.
The spokesperson added that there was always a high demand for Christmas accommodation on the island, and this year is no exception.
The Rottnest Island website has a long history of crashes during times of high demand. In 2019, major technical issues led to several outages, leaving visitors in line for hours.
Vacationers will have the chance to score a room for January 2022 when New Year bookings open on May 3.
The pandemic, along with the threat of further border closures amid new epidemics, has made Rottnest Island a popular destination once it was reopened to tourists last winter.
During the height of the WA lockdown, the island was used to quarantine international arrivals in order to separate them from the mainland.
In Broome, companies are also reporting extremely high booking levels.
Seashells Broome hotel general manager Deb Williams said they were fully booked.
“The last two months have been a lot busier than usual and we are very full from now until the end of the school holidays in October,” she said.