Aussies urged to pull sick-as sickie and hit Queenstown

AUSTRALIANS are being encouraged by Queenstown's tourism body to pull a sickie and fly to the resort for a long weekend.

Destination Queenstown yesterday announced its latest targeted marketing campaign - "sick day, stow away" - encouraging Australians to call in sick from work and visit the resort for a sneaky spring break.

Researchers commissioned by DQ surveyed 1005 fulltime employees in Australia. It showed more than 80 per cent had taken a sick day despite not really being sick.

It then commissioned Australian comedian Dan Ilic to create a video guide to help people call in sick, so they can take a long weekend in the Lakes District.

"The team at Destination Queenstown felt they might get in trouble if they were to teach the entire Australian workforce how to skip work and escape to the snow," Ilic said.

"Something about economic collapse, trade sanctions and potential invasion ... as a comedian, they thought I might get away with it."

The video shows Ilic atop various mountains, bungy jumping, parapenting, sipping wine and eating a burger, all the while dishing out advice on how to pull a "siiick" sickie.

Advice includes when to organise to be sick, how to set up a sickness, how to call in sick, and what to say in the "follow-up text".

DQ chief executive Graham Budd said he was not worried about copping flak from employers. "I'm sure they'll have a wee chuckle and not take it too seriously."

The online campaign would run for "a week or so".

- Otago Daily Times



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