After the COVID-19 pandemic and its damaging effects on the country’s economy, various stimulus packages have been made available to individuals and business owners.

The latest support schemes to be rolled out in 2022 to small business owners will help bring interest back to Victoria’s entertainment and dining scene.

Melbourne & State-Wide Dining Vouchers

There are two types of dining vouchers available that covers all of Victoria. This scheme allows customers to receive 25% back on their dining costs when spending between $40 and $500 from Monday to Thursday.

Melbourne Money:

  • A widely popular option to most Melburnians has been the ‘Melbourne Money’ scheme. This voucher can be used when dining in the Melbourne CBD. Those businesses struggling to reach capacity can appreciate this program as diners are not only likely to want to eat out when in Melbourne, but they may be inclined to spend more.
  • This offer has been available since 7 March 2022 and the current balance as of 15/03/2022 is still $8 million. We encourage all hospitality businesses to make sure they include this program as part of their promotion and make existing customers aware.

For more information and details on how to claim visit the the City of Melbourne website.

State-wide Dining Vouchers:

  • In addition to the ‘Melbourne Money’ scheme returning, a new program will open on 29 March 2022 to cover all areas of Victoria outside the Melbourne CBD. The same rules as Melbourne Money apply to be eligible.
  • These programs will be on a first-in-first-served basis until all funds are exhausted.


Entertainment Voucher Scheme

A $30 million package will be allocated for those in the entertainment industry, allowing customers to be reimbursed following their activity. Like Melbourne Money, customers can receive 25% back on their purchase up to $125 if they spend between $40 – $500. These activities include:

  • the cinema
  • theatrical productions
  • live music
  • exhibitions
  • conferences
  • other events.

This program is expected to open on 29 March 2022.

Regional and Metropolitan Travel Voucher Scheme

The most welcomed Regional and Metropolitan Travel Voucher scheme, an expansion of last year’s travel scheme, opened on 23 March 2022 and has been allocated $30 million to boost tourism businesses. Victorians have a chance to receive one of 150,000 travel vouchers on a first-come-first-serve basis.

The voucher provides a $200 reimbursement if you spend at least $400 on Victoria’s eligible tourism and travel-related services (i.e. accommodation, tours, experiences and attractions). However, to be successful, travelers must stay for at least two nights in paid accommodation, and travel must be between 8 April and 27 May. So we suggest you consider this when planning your promotions if you are in the tourism industry or plan to travel during this period.

For more information and details on how to claim visit the Victorian Government website.

Ventilation voucher program

Additionally, to remain up to date with COVIDSafe protocols, the state government is offering $500 to support the ongoing maintenance required to fulfill these high safety standards. This would include the purchase of air purifiers, ventilators, and other cleaning needs.

Matching grants are also available for up to $5,000 if additional funding is required, with a total of $60 million being accessible to the state.

Both voucher programs are readily available for use in late March.

For more information and details on how to claim visit the Victorian Government website.

Small Business Digital Adaptation Program

Good news for small businesses planning to expand or upgrade their online presence or operations; a third round of the ‘Small Business Digital Adaptation Program’ is set to open on 4 April 2022. This program will offer a further $5 million of funds to help around 5,000 small businesses.
You can register to trial a range of digital business tools – resources from Square, Shopify, MYOB, XERO to name a few.

After the trial period, if you purchase any of the products offered by this program you will receive a $1,200 reimbursement.

NOTE: To be eligible for the program, the digital products must be new for your business (ie not currently used) and you must have also operated a business located in Victoria that has been in operations since 13 September 2019.

For more information and details on the Small Business Digital Adaption program, visit the Victorian Government website.

Jobs Victoria Fund

This initiative aims to connect the unemployed to businesses struggling for workers due to workforce shortages. The hospitality, warehousing, logistics, tourism, and food processing industries are particularly targeted.

Jobs Victoria wage subsidies of up to $20,000 are available to meet the costs associated with employing someone for 12 months.

To be eligible for a wage subsidy, jobs must be for at least 19 hours per week (or eight hours if an exemption applies).

The number of wage subsidies you can apply for over the life of the Fund depends on the size of your business.

At least 60% of jobs supported by the Jobs Victoria Fund will be for women, reflecting the significant impact the pandemic has had on their employment opportunities.

To qualify for the subsidy, you must employ someone from at least one of the priority groups most impacted by the pandemic.
To find out more about the funds and eligibility criteria, please refer to the  Jobs Victoria Funds Guidelines.

How Morrows can help?

Are you interested in finding out if you or your business is entitled to any of the current Stimulus packages and grants? Please reach out to your Morrows advisor or visit the Business Victoria website.  

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