TIAC Says Federal Budget Will Help Attract American Visitors

Open Jaw

Yesterday's federal budget promises to improve Canada's global competitiveness in attracting U.S. visitors, and strengthen the travel industry's ability to create jobs for Canadians in every region, says Charlotte Bell, President & CEO of the Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC).

The federal budget includes important measures for the Canadian travel and tourism industry, says Bell, specifically a commitment to invest in TIAC's 'Connecting America' marketing proposal that would see the feds match industry investment dollar-for-dollar to re-engage American interest in Canada as a travel destination. Funds would be used for a Canadian Tourism Commission-led marketing campaign.

The government will consult with industry over the coming weeks to determine the amount, Bell says.

"The United States is Canada's largest and most important tourism source market. With a recovering U.S. economy, record high passport ownership and a favourable exchange rate, the timing is perfect for a nationally-aligned marketing campaign to regain the nearly 4 million American visitors we have lost annually since 2001," added Bell.

TIAC says Canada's competitiveness as a travel destination requires more than effective marketing. The group says the budget includes other measures to facilitate visitation including the expansion of the electronic travel authorization program to remove visa requirements from the key emerging markets of Mexico and Brazil.

The budget also commits to enhance experiential tourism through investments in Canada's 150th birthday celebrations in 2017, as well as infrastructure investments in public transit, museums, cultural centres and historic sites.

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