Team Canada is ready to go. The travel industry has invested billions in health and hygiene protocols, retraining staff, and reconfiguring experiences to prepare for visitors.
In terms of Canadians level of welcome - our monthly tracking shows that Canadians are becoming increasingly more open to welcoming back international visitors. Our warm and diverse people, vibrant cities and cultures, and incomparable natural beauty await those looking for meaningful travel experiences to reconnect with what’s important today.
We have been working closely with our in-market teams globally to ensure that Canada stays top-of-mind and we continue to cultivate our global travel trade and travel media relationships. Team Canada is absolutely ready to go and we are excited to be welcoming back travellers.
It is important that travellers can feel confident in making travel plans as tourism businesses throughout Canada have made huge investments in new hygiene protocols. The health and well-being of tourism employees and guests is paramount.
We encourage industry members to read our report Tourism’s Big Shift, which identifies key trends influencing the tourism industry in the next 1-3 years. Our tools page on our website has resources to help businesses build back stronger and attract the types of guests they want.
Our consumer website has lots of great resources and travel inspiration.
The Canada Specialist Program is intended to be a one-stop resource for travel advisors in Canada, to help them learn about the destinations and connect them with the tour operators. Travel advisors can tune into on demand webinars and partake in virtual experiences to get a sense of what Canada has to offer.
More details on our Canada Specialist Program is available on our website: canadaspecialist.ca
Destination Canada’s report, Tourism’s Big Shift, identifies the key trends that will have the greatest impact on Canada’s travel and tourism industry in the next one to three years.
This new report delves into the trends influencing the traveller of tomorrow under three key areas:
- Macro trends: The profound socio-economic changes that will affect businesses and communities of all kinds, including climate change and accelerated digitalization.
- Industry Trends: Key challenges that will impact Canadian tourism businesses, such as reduced transport connectivity and labour shortages.
- Market Trends: Changes in consumer behaviour and values that will influence tourism businesses operational models, product and service development, channel marketing budgets, and focus for the future, including trends such as responsible travel, health and wellbeing and Indigenous connection - these emerging consumer preferences align with a more aspirational level of tourism.
Download the full report here.
There are many important elements for recovery of the industry but the number one thing we need is for Canadians to keep their holiday dollars in Canada to speed up our sector’s recovery. We encourage businesses to channel domestic demand and we are doing the same.
To help do this, we need to do the following:
- Increase Canadians’ understanding of the importance of Canada’s tourism industry.
- Inspire confidence and desire to travel domestically – this includes showcasing all of the extensive health and hygiene protocols that have been put into place and also reminding Canadians what a beautiful country we live in!
- Re-ignite the welcoming spirit of Canadian communities – to ensure they feel ready to welcome visitors back again.
We work closely with our provincial and territorial counterparts and keep them up-to-date on all marketing plans and provide opportunities for collaboration whenever possible, keeping in mind equal representation from across the country. We want to ensure we are supporting ongoing efforts and not duplicating.
It is crucial that you stay connected to your provincial and territorial marketing organizations to stay apprised of all plans and opportunities within your local region.
Going forward, we will be using a new yardstick for Canada’s tourism industry – one that measures whether tourism is creating net benefits for our country. As we re-build our industry, we are focused on four pillars that will enable us to compete more effectively and win the customers we want. Building on existing strengths in marketing and research, we are carving out a new strategic role in destination development. We will look to work with businesses across the country in these efforts.
Travel demand is high and domestic travel will continue to lead recovery, with US following closely behind. Our other international markets have been slower to recover; international arrivals from DC long-haul markets have only recovered to 35% of the equivalent September to April period in 2018/19.
While recovery is uneven among our markets, momentum is building and we are forecasting that pleasure visitor segments will return to 2019 levels by 2025, with an upside to 2024 as our best-case scenario.
We are working closely with our in-market teams globally to ensure that Canada is a premier destination for international travellers and are maintaining our strong global travel trade and travel media relationships.
Our Travel Providers page helps travellers find accommodations, transportation, and travel packages to get started on planning their Canadian travel journey. We have also created a Package Portal with bookable packages form partners from across Canada.
Our report Tourism’s Big Shift, identifies key trends that are impacting Canada’s tourism industry in the next one to three years. Developing a collective understanding of these changes in the tourism industry and in consumer behaviours, as well as their potential implications, is key to the industry’s recovery. For tourism businesses and operators across the country, this trends analysis will help inform strategies and understand the key immediate changes anticipated as well as the longer-term implications.
Earlier this year, we hosted a webinar for small and medium tourism businesses (SMEs) discussing the findings from this report and sharing key ways that SMEs can apply these findings to their recovery strategy. You can watch a recording of the webinar here.
Below are a few key trends and takeaways from the webinar:
- More Leisure: Today’s guest is different, and motivators and drivers need to be present in our business practices and stories.
- Stay really close to your best guests and stakeholders - and align closely with their motivations and drivers.
- More Digital: The industry has become more digital in its approach - look at ways to adopt technology while keeping the guest front and center of everything you do.
- Embrace technology to support your presence online and to replace services where no- or low-touch is needed.
- More Change: As more uncertainty is expected, operators and destinations will need to be future-facing and flexible in order to proactively adapt to a new reality rather than wait for the industry to rebound to pre-COVID-19 levels.
- Utilize the resources available to you:
- With continued labour challenges, we need to look at adopting new practices for recruiting and retaining employees - examine your employee value proposition to ensure you can compete with all the other options workers may have.
- More Competition: While governments invest heavily in the tourism industry’s recovery and competitiveness, the volume of international tourists from source markets will be limited, creating a highly competitive landscape in the short term — especially as destinations simultaneously open their borders.
- Get a jumpstart on your competition with your marketing and stay visible even through the downtimes.