myDarwin a success story

City of Darwin’s myDarwin discount voucher program has proved an overwhelming success, with more than 300 local businesses benefitting from the post COVID-19 recovery initiative.

More than 25,000 people registered on the online platform and more than 7200 discount vouchers were redeemed in the first week alone, with customers spending an average $75 to redeem their discounts.

The myDarwin project, an economic stimulus initiative by the City of Darwin, was designed to encourage frequent visits and spending by customers at locally owned small and medium businesses post the COVID-19 restrictions. 

More than $2 million dollars was spent at local businesses in conjunction with the myDarwin vouchers, exceeding all expectations.

General Manager Innovation, Growth and Development, Josh Sattler said City of Darwin was delighted with the program’s success. “This is the first time a local government in Australia has launched this type of program and I’m proud we have taken the lead to support our community at this time.”

The initiative was funded by $300,000 allocated from Council’s parking reserves, and aimed at supporting retail, hospitality and tourism businesses across Darwin.

Sattler said Darwin had been lucky to come out of the pandemic lockdown early but Council identified a need to come up with an incentive to ‘break the isolation hibernation’, encouraging people back onto the street and into the shops and cafes. 

He explained the current myDarwin discount voucher program lasted until the funding pool was used up but the platform’s value is that it can be reactivated in the future, for example after a severe cyclone. 

The project has sparked interest from other councils across Australia and New Zealand. 

Lord Mayor, Kon Vatskalis, said, “We know our local businesses support local jobs so it’s more important than ever that we all work together as a city to rise from this challenge.

Customers who registered receive $40 worth of myDarwin discounts each day to spend at local small and medium retail, hospitality and tourism businesses.

Industries benefitting the most from the program were food and beverage, sport and camping, hairdressing and beauty.