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October 27, 2017 7:37 pm

Strong Tourism Numbers for B.C.

Monday, December 26, 2016 @ 6:50 AM

Prince George, B.C. – 2016  will be  in the books as a  great year for tourism in B.C.

In the first 10 months of this year,  nearly 4.9 million international visitors came to this province.

The latest international overnight visitor numbers from Statistics Canada  show that  from January to the end of October,  there were 531,431 more visitors to B.C.    That’s a 12.2% increase over the same period last year, and  in October alone, a 12.1 %  increase  from October  of 2015.

Where are the  additional visitors from?

According to the states,  the largest increase was in  visitors from  Australia ,  up 45.3%

Visitors from China, Mexico and the United Kingdom  were each up  about 23%,   while the increase in  visitors from the U.S.  saw an 8.1%  boost.
The Provincial Government  cites a number of reasons for  the  increases,  including  improved air access and Destination BC’s new  international marketing  strategy.



I would think the low Canadian dollar would be the biggest reason for increased tourism.

Exactly DI, the low Canadian dollar is the main reason behind the increase in tourism.

“Improved air access and Destination BC’s new international marketing strategy” had very little to do with the increase in tourism numbers.” This government seems desperate to find anything that could be used to spin themselves into some kind of positive.

    To which I say that some people on this site seem desperate to find anything that could be used to spin themselves into some kind of negative.

    You have not done your homework.

    The Euro, the AU$, and most other currencies which fluctuate with the strength or weakness of the US$ have fluctuated about 10% or so against the C$.

    If one looks at the AU$, for instance it was weak at mid 2016. One C$ bought 1.06 A$. in other words it was weaker, not stronger. It has now reversed so that the same $C buys only 0.97 A$.

    In January the C$ bought 0.63Euros. In mid December it bought 0.71 Euros. The C$ started increasing in value against the Euro in March when it was down to 0.68 Euros.

    You are so provincial it is pathetic. Learn something about world affairs and the resulting influence on world currencies before making unfounded comments.

    look it up yourself at xe.com/currencyconverter. There is a chart which covers 10 years of fluctuating currencies. Pick you choice.

      Sorry gopg2015, the facts do not support your suppositions. Fact: the USA accounts for 76% of all visitors to BC. Fact: a drop in our loonie results in more tourists from the USA because their dollar’s purchasing power increases here.

      ht tp://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/loonies-drop-driving-more-american-tourists-to-canada/article25980248/

      In my opinion, this 250news story is nothing more than BC Liberal Government propaganda swill, where Christy and company attempt to credit themselves for an increase in BC tourism, even though everyone knows it is the drop in our dollar that is the “main cause” for the increased tourism to BC.

      Gopg, thanks, very good information.

      As long as Alaska is is on every US citezen’s bucket list it will stay that way for those who want to go by car or motorhome.

      The number of caucus who vitamin the USA far exceeds the reverse, despite the fact that we have only a tenth of th population and no matter what the currency conversion.

      Spin it you way. You always do.

      Just remember the stats are federal because they are taken at points of entry that are federal jurisdiction.

      So tell me, what does the province have to do with that?

      Maybe they are paying off the feds to fix the numbers????

      Auto spelling on this tablet is terrible.

      Caucus = citizens

      Vitamin = visit

      “Fact: a drop in our loonie results in more tourists from the USA because their dollar’s purchasing power increases here.”

      You should spend some time in Blaine, WA. I have spent a considerable amount of time in Northwest WA state over the last 3 years.

      Watch the border crossing. Talk to the people.

      The Americans do not give a chit about the exchange rate. There is no uptake in Vancouver for shopping trips to speak of.

      There is a definite drop in Canucks going shopping in the USA, however. Despite the fewer dollars spent by them, the border crossings still have mainly BC and some Alberta license plates.

      Go to a major shopping centre in the GVRD and US license plates are rare. In Bellingham, Canadian license plates used to be around 50% … that has now dropped to 25% at the most.

      You’ll be lucky to see 5% US plates on parking lots in the GVRD.

States = stats or statistics ?

“Stats” yes Ataloss

But if the first two comments were the “biggest” reason then there would have been as large or larger an increase from US tourists as Australian.

Marketing plays a key role in leisure travel from foreign markets. Australia has the highest proportion of people participating in leisure travel in the world.

Canada and BC in particular have been aggressively chasing those travelers and their dollars

A couple of gaming friends of mine in Europe tell me BC is aggressively peddled in their respective countries (GB, Germany, Netherlands) and what was very surprising to hear was in Northern Germany Prince George is heavily advertised in their travel agencies and brochures and my friend in Hamburg sent me some of those brochures last year was entertaining to see MR. PG shown on the front of the brochure.

It also helps there is a significant German population on both east and west highway 16

Regardless of how we get the tourism dollars it is still good to see tourism revenues go up

    I read somewhere in the past that German was the largest ethnic heritage in Northern BC, which at one point made up nearly a third of the population.

    The destination marketing organizations like marketing in Germany because they have a huge tourism marketing fair there every year and that is usually the highlight of the marketing boards staff each year for traveling to represent BC at these types of events. If one looks close enough they tend to attend these types of events at places that would be great to visit and not necessarily where the greatest potential of visitors come from. I wouldn’t give these marketing boards to much credit. Mostly staffed by partisans for the ruling party that fund media for advertising dollars relating to tourism through matching funds with the approved media that reaches a political audience as much as a potential tourism related audience.

    That said its good to hear they do have visibility in places like Germany where they tend to stay much longer and spend more than the day visitors from the states do.

Tourism numbers have NOT gone up over last year (2015). Here are the numbers from last year, which shows a breakdown of visitor numbers by place of origin. Visitors from the USA account for 76% of total BC visitors, only 24% of visitors to BC are from overseas countries, of which visitors from Asia dominate so much, their numbers account for more visitors than all the other countries combined! So Europe and Australia are “bit players” in BC tourism. In my opinion, this government press release is nothing more than smoke and mirrors folks, smoke and mirrors!

2015 Visitors entering Canada VIA British Columbia
Total: 6,928,000
USA: 5,235,000
Overseas: 1,694,000
Breakdown of Overseas Visitors:
Asia: 838,000
Europe: 480,000
Other: 375,000

    You are comparing “2015 Visitors entering Canada VIA British Columbia” for 12 months of 2015 to “nearly 4.9 million international visitors came to this province” for 10 months.

    Vancouver airport is a major entry port to Canada, especially from the pan Pacific region. When they deplane and take a domestic flight to parts east, especially without an overnight stay in Vancouver, the are not visiting BC and spending money here.

    Coming the other way, from Europe, one of the popular routes is to fly to Calgary, rent a car or motor home there and do a circuit which goes to Jasper, then back down to Kamloops via Valemount, through to Vancouver. Those are visitors entering Canada via Alberta, but spend most of their time in BC.

    You have made the mistake of comparing apples to oranges.

    Remember, the source quoted in the report is Statistics Canada that provided the stats behind the statement: “That’s a 12.2% increase over the same period last year, and in October alone, a 12.1 % increase from October of 2015.”

    Why are you not blaming Stats Canada instead of the BC government?

      You can attempt to “muddy the water” all you want gopg2015, this news article states; “The Provincial Government cites a number of reasons for the increases, including improved air access and Destination BC’s new international marketing strategy.”

      The “main reason” tourism has increased in BC is because of the drop in our loonie. This news article ignores that main reason and seeks to promote government actions as the reason for tourism increase. In have presented the facts, with sources, that state otherwise!

      Have a nice day!

      “The “main reason” tourism has increased in BC is because of the drop in our loonie.”

      Show me the study which says that is the “main” reason.

      You do realize, of course, that the so-called “Americans” – meaning those who live in the United States of America as opposed to those who live in the United States of Mexico, who are also citizens of North America, as are the Canadians and several other countries – have finally gotten out of their depression and are starting to be able to spend again. So some of them are including travelling in their spending.

      The US is a large country, not only by area, but also by population. The latter is why many might think they are avid world travellers. However, that is not true.

      Headline in the US News: “Americans half as likely as Europeans to travel to more than one country, and 29% have never been abroad: survey”
      Source = nydailynews.com/news/national/americans-travel-survey-article-1.2431648
      from that article:

      When it comes to travel, Americans aren’t very worldly, a new study shows.

      Yanks are only half as likely as Europeans to go abroad to visit more than one country — with expense being the number one reason the U.S. is full of homebodies.

      The average resident of the United Kingdom has visited 10 countries, Germans on average visit eight nations and the French five, said a Hostelworld Global Traveler Report released Wednesday.

      In a survey that included some 7,000 international travelers, the report found that the average American has been to just three nations — nearly one-third, or roughly 29%, of American adults have never been abroad.

      Americans traveling overseas say they are most interested in meeting and interacting with Australians (23%), followed by the British (18%), Germans (14%) and fellow Americans (12%).

      The most-visited destination was Canada (26%), followed by Mexico (23%).

      In Europe, Yanks liked France best (13%), England (12%) and Italy (12%).

      Remember, US citizens have a vast and diverse geographic, climatic and cultural palette, one that exceeds that of Canada, especially when one takes in Hawaii and Alaska. To move US Citizens off their collective asses takes a lot of doing.

      If they want to see the world, they join the armed forces and let Uncle Sam pay for their travel. ;-)

BCs new marketing strategy –Talk about a bunch of blowhards. I would have to agree with the first two comments. Maybe it’s because the twining of cities and our last mayor should get credit.

    THAT was hilarious! LMAO!

Here is how Canada places as an international tourist destinations in 2015 (number of people who visited from outside the countries) compared to other countries with more than 10 million visitors.

1 France 84.5 million
2 United States 77.5 million
3 Spain 68.2 million
4 China 56.9 million
5 Italy 50.7 million
6 Turkey 41,6 million
7 Germany 35.0 million
8 United Kingdom 34.4 million
9 Mexico 32.1 million
10 Russia 31.3 million
11 Thailand 29.9 million
12 Hong Kong 26.7 million
13 Malaysia 25.7 million
14 Japan 19.7 million
15 Canada 18.0 million
16 Saudi Arabia 18.0 million
17 Macau 14.3 million
18 South Korea 13.2 million
19 Singapore 12.1 million
20 Taiwan 10.4 million
21 Indonesia 10.4 million


This is how much citizens of the following countries spent in 2015 on international tourism. (US$)

1 China $292.2 billion
2 United States $112.9 billion
3 Germany $77.5 billion
4 United Kingdom $63.3 billion
5 France $38.4 billion
6 Russia $34.9 billion
7 Canada $29.4 billion
8 South Korea $25.0 billion
9 Italy $24.9 billion
10 Australia $23.5 billion

Source = World Tourism Organization

Canada has a major deficit in tourism spending. That is, we spend more travelling outside the country than we receive from tourists travelling to Canada.

Not only do we need to promote Canada better as a destination, but we need to build better facilities. We have some outstanding ones that are world class, but those in the hinterlands do not match that level. Prince George and its regional district could do much better. It would not only enhance tourism opportunities, but also our own lifestyles.

One last statistic.

Using the top ten spending countries, it is really unfair to look at their total spending since their is no equity in comparing a country of 300 million population with a country of 30 million.

So here are those same 10 countries shown as spending per person of population (not traveller).

1  United Kingdom $972
2  Australia $967
3  Germany $961
4  Canada $810
5  France $594
6  South Korea $495
7  Italy $416
8  United States $348
9  Russia $243
10  China $228

It is an indirect indicator of how much people in those countries travel internationally.

Based on that, which country should we target for marketing Canada as a destination by finding out more about their travel habits, market those facilities we already have which fit those habits and increase the tourist infrastructure where there are gaps?

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