Dollar Drives Tourism
Prince George, B.C. – While the weather may not be the best, the value of the Canadian dollar is helping drive tourism in the Province.
“We’ve had a fantastic start to the season” says Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training, Shirley Bond “We’ve had over a million visitors in the first few months of this year, that is a record. We are seeing numbers in the 18% increase to over 20% in international visitors year over year.”
But are those visitors heading north of the Fraser Valley? Minister Bond says yes “We are actually seeing good strong numbers in most of the Province. Here in Prince George, we’ve had a conversation with tourism providers and they are seeing stronger numbers as well so I think people are actually moving across the Province.”
She says the increase isn’t all about the value of the Loonie “Obviously the low Canadian dollar has an impact, but also strategic marketing plans where we are targeting particular jurisdictions is also making a difference.”
Minister Bond says programs, like the one announced yesterday which will take stock and make public the accessibility of B.C.’s parks and heritage sites, are “Another focused attempt to find reasons for people to choose to come North, But I think with strong numbers across the Province I think it’s going to be another banner year and we hope that trend continues.”
The program announced yesterday ( see previous story) will examine 150 parks and heritage sites along major travel routes and rate them on their accessibility. The information will be made available on line so travellers with disabilities can see what B.C. has to offer. Travellers with disabilities are said to spend $80 billion a year annually world wide on travel .
What they also need is modernized rest stops for frequently along the hyways like they do in the States
Totally concur with the comment about rest stops. BC’s rest stops are from the dark ages when compared to those in the USA along I-5 or other major highways.
Maybe Christy will improve the rest stops once she gets her hands on all the LNG cash she has been spouting about for the last 4 years.
Years ago they had quite a few rest stops between here and Cache Creek. Many were closed one after the other because they could not find a way to deal with the continuously ongoing vandalism, which resulted in smashed toilet bowls, ripped out doors and defecation everywhere. No wonder we are in the dark ages! Whose fault is it?
“She (Shirley Bond) says the increase isn’t all about the value of the Loonie “Obviously the low Canadian dollar has an impact, but also strategic marketing plans where we are targeting particular jurisdictions is also making a difference.”
No kidding… Destination BC, the marketing arm of BC Tourism, is getting $49 million per year to market our parks and BC to the world… yet funding to operate and maintain our parks sits at a pathetic $31 million per year, virtually the same as our parks were funded 15 years ago, when it was $30 million.
Then there was the tourism killing cutbacks to the BC Ferry service.
Let there be no mistake about it; this Christy Clark government has been no friend to tourism in British Columbia, in my opinion.
I have to agree with Prince George. We went into a rest stop outside of Abbotsford and the toilet bowl was busted, and it was a hell of a mess.
Make no mistake, there is little between Cache Creek, and Prince Rupert that would entice a person to stay in the area.
A lot of the smaller lakes are a bitch to get in and out of, and have basically been abandoned for years.
The problem is all the money that is being collected in taxes, and service fee’s etc, is being paid out in salaries and benefits to Government employee’s, and there is little left for some of the basic’s.
We have a lot of road work going on in certain area’s and a few other things, however that’s not surprising considering there is an election coming.
As far as vandalism goes, as long as committing crime in BC is treated as a misdemeanor we are not going to make any progress.
And as long as we have parks and lakes in the area that are not being looked after we can forget about tourists. Most of them hang out at the casino and then head North West to Alaska.
Put a bounty on Vandals. Cash Rewards for reporting and turning in these low life’s who screw things up for the rest of us.
I find it hard to believe that readers would give you a thumbs down for stating the obvious! Perhaps they enjoy these low life pea brained jerks screwing things up for the rest of us?! OMG!
I do not understand why anyone would use anything but stainless steel for public washrooms, including polished stainless steel for “mirrors” if any at all.
The truckstops on I5 are very well maintained. They are large enough to hold over a dozen truck-trailers plus other small vehicles overnight.
Public washroom facilities in Northwest USA are available virtually everywhere and are maintained in much cleaner condition than in BC.
When using restroom/washroom facilities in Canadian box stores for instance they are often dirty while similar stores in Washington are much cleaner …. actually never mind the much, they are just cleaner.
Forgot to write that the traffic volumes also cannot be compared to the routes north and east of Hope. No comparison.
I think such stops would be more appropriate on the edge of towns in Canada rather than in the middle of nowhere.
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