Voice of the BC Tourism Industry
January 10, 2019
Chair's Message
Happy New Year!
Like many of my professional colleagues, I’ve just returned from vacation to a mountain of correspondence to respond to, issues to address, plans to implement, and meetings to attend. And that’s just in my volunteer position as chair of TIABC.
For many people, the start of a new year corresponds to a long list of unattainable resolutions, the bulk of which evaporate before the end of Q1. I’m not one for proclaiming aspirational resolutions so allow me to simply reference the pragmatic.
In the short-term, TIABC is focussed on the upcoming BC Tourism Industry Conference, details of which are outlined below and on the conference website. The organizing committee has diligently constructed a program that will benefit and offer value to all delegates. I’m especially excited about our keynote speakers including the president and CEO of Expedia. I encourage you to register early and book your accommodation if you’re traveling to the conference from outside of Metro Vancouver.
2019 represents another election year in Canada and campaigning has already (unofficially) begun. In just over 10 months, Canadians will go the polls to elect a new federal government. TIABC will again produce an election guide that members can use to engage candidates of all parties in a discussion on tourism industry priorities, issues and opportunities. On a related note, we’re also paying close attention to the bi-election in Nanaimo…the outcome of which has huge implications for BC’s political landscape.
On the policy front, our Policy Committee is working on a few key positions vis-à-vis management of the recreational fishery, species at risk (caribou), transportation, labour, and emergency preparedness, among others. Importantly, we will be working on refining other policies on federal issues in advance of the impending election.
At the ground level, connecting with new mayors and councillors throughout BC is also on TIABC’s agenda. It’s imperative that we recruit and educate new tourism champions within communities to help us address files such as short-term vacation rentals, housing, ride sharing, labour, marketing funding and other important issues.
I’ve heard it said by many people that they’re thankful to return to work to rest up after a strenuous vacation. At TIABC, it’s just the opposite. Thankful yes, but we’re keen to get back to work to resolve the challenges and pursue the opportunities on behalf of BC’s visitor economy.
From our board to you, best wishes for a successful and prosperous 2019. We look forward to seeing you at the BC Tourism Industry Conference next month.

Alroy Chan
Chair, TIABC Board of Directors

Early-bird Conference Registration Underway
Qualify to win a trip for two from Vancouver to Victoria courtesy of Helijet Airways and Hotel Grand Pacific
Early-bird registration for the BC Tourism Industry Conference, which takes place from February 27th to March 1st in Vancouver, is underway until January 31st.

All early-bird registrants will be entered into a draw to win a trip for two from Vancouver to Victoria that includes return flights on Helijet and two nights stay at Hotel Grand Pacific.

Conference registration:

(39 Smithe Street, Vancouver) is the official host venue for the 2019 BC Tourism Industry Conference.

Conference Group Rate: $219/night for Single/Double Occupancy
The special guestroom rates will be available until January 27th or until the group block is sold-out, whichever comes first. Accommodation booking: book.passkey.com
Speaker & Workshop Spotlight
Meet two of our expert conference speakers and learn about the focus of their workshops
Brad McCannell , Vice President of Access and Inclusion for the Rick Hansen Foundation will address the realities of developing meaningful access and recognizing inclusion issues as economic opportunities for your tourism business.
With nearly 50% of Canadian adults having experienced a permanent or temporary disability, recognizing the changing needs of visitors and employees is the key to staying viable in a world where upwards of 40% of the global population will be directly affected by access to the built environment in less than 20 years.
The Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification™ (RHFAC) program is the first program of its kind to create a nationally consistent universal rating system that measures meaningful access in the built environment for people with mobility, vision and hearing disabilities and challenges.
Nahal Yousefian manages the rich human talent within Mountain Equipment Co-op. All MEC workplaces – stores, head office and distribution centre – are her workplace. Nahal helps ensure that people possess the attitude, skills and experience to serve their members’ diverse needs. By removing barriers that prevent employees from being engaged and empowered, MEC can better deliver on its purpose.

Prior to joining MEC in summer 2017, Nahal was with the multinational retailer, Tesco, in Prague where she held several senior human resources roles. Among other points of pride, she was integral to building a service-centric culture among 120,000 employees based in Europe and Asia.
BC Tourism Industry Awards – Nominations Deadline Extended to January 21st
Given the timing of the holiday season, we've listened to requests to extend the nomination deadline for the BC Tourism Industry Awards.

The awards recognize tourism industry organizations, businesses and individuals who have made exceptional contributions to the Province's tourism industry.

Recipients of the awards are individuals and/or organizations that provide outstanding service, exemplify best business practices, execute innovative marketing campaigns, and deliver tourism experiences that contribute to the overwhelming success of BC's visitor economy.
Recognize a special tourism industry individual or organization by nominating them in one of the six award categories

·         Remarkable Experiences
·         Innovation
·         Customer Service
·         Employees First
·         BC DMO Professional Excellence
·         Indigenous Tourism
More information and nominations forms for each category can be found at the   BCTIC website .
Help us recognize the best of the best in BC's tourism industry!
Support BC's Tourism Students
TIABC is seeking sponsors for the 2019 BC Tourism Industry Conference Adopt-a-Student program. A few hundred dollars can enable a full-time student in BC to experience the conference and meet potential future employers.

Thanks to Destination BC, Tourism Richmond, Elysian Projects and Rocky Mountaineer who have committed to sponsoring a student for this year's conference. In addition to TIABC's sponsorship, at least 5 tourism students are eligible for event sponsorship.

Visit our website for more information or contact us at info@tiabc.ca

Congratulations to Baldy Mountain Resort
All companies that signed on as new members of TIABC during Q4, 2018 were entered into a draw to win a free BC Tourism Industry Conference registration.

Congratulations to Baldy Mountain Resort! Thank you for your membership and enjoy the conference.
Fisheries Minister Hears From Another Sector About Challenges to BC's Recreational Fishery

BC Lodging and Campgrounds Association (BCLCA) has written to Minister Jonathan Wilkinson about the management of the recreational fishery in BC and its impacts on BCLCA members.

Dear Minister Wilkinson:

I am writing to you to express concerns on how your Department is managing the recreational fishery in British Columbia (B.C.). The British Columbia Lodging and Campgrounds Association (BCLCA) is a non-profit trade organization established in 1944 representing over 400 motels, motor inns, hotels, resorts, lodges, bed and breakfasts, campgrounds and RV Parks throughout British Columbia. The Sport and Recreational Fishing in B.C. is worth approximately $700M to the provincial economy and creates approximately 8,000 jobs in this province.

The BCLCA has had a challenging year in 2018 for our members and their customers who participate in the recreational fishery. 
BCHA Staff Announcement
In November, the BC Hotel Association embarked on an organizational restructuring as it implemented its new strategic plan. With the support and guidance of the Board of Directors, the organization has implemented a new organizational structure and introduced two new members:
Agata Kosinski, Manager Government Relations
Prior to joining BCHA, Agata served as an Assistant to Regional Committees at Metro Vancouver Regional District. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Simon Fraser University, and a master’s degree in International Relations from Bristol University, in England.
Terry Duzenberry, Manager Member Engagement
Terry is a Hospitality Management Professional with over 20 years of Sales, Marketing and Operations Experience. Born and raised in Powell River, B.C., she studied Hotel and Hospitality Management in Krems, Austria. She most recently and for the past 14 years, owned and operated a consulting business and has worked for independent properties as well as larger chains such as Marriott Hotels and Resorts in both Germany and Canada, and Canadian Pacific Hotels.
James Chase, President & CEO
James has more than 30 years of experience in the hotel and tourism industry, starting with Delta hotels and resorts and eventually moving to Whistler. Continuing his work with hotels, James joined the BC Hotel Association in 1991 and in his 28 years with the BCHA, he has tackled files ranging from affordable housing, the development and implementation of the municipal regional district tax used to support destination marketing efforts, to international solutions for the growing labour shortage among many other areas of industry focus. 
Stacey Sellars, Director Communications
Stacey joined the BCHA in April, 2016. Born and raised in the Yukon, Stacey moved to Calgary for her undergrad and then settled into Vancouver following her Master of Publishing coursework with SFU. With a background in publishing and digital media, Stacey previously worked with the National Film Board of Canada’s Digital Studio as their production coordinator, and as the publishing intern for TheTyee.ca and Appetite by Random House.
Rocky Mountaineer Staff Announcement
Steve Sammut has accepted the role of Chief Executive Officer for Rocky Mountaineer. Moving forward, Steve will hold the dual title of President and Chief Executive Officer.

Steve joined Rocky Mountaineer in 2012 as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer before being appointed President in 2015. He has in-depth knowledge of the many different components of the business, and has demonstrated great passion for the product as well as a clear vision for the future. Under his leadership, the team at Rocky Mountaineer has made significant strides in increasing brand awareness in their core markets, creating mutually beneficial relationships with key partners and suppliers, and putting in place a foundation that will be a springboard to future growth. Steve has been instrumental in building the organization's capacity to welcome even more guests with the new GoldLeaf project, and the SilverLeaf and GoldLeaf refurbishment programs. He has also has demonstrated an immense drive to champion Rocky Mountaineer’s incredible culture, grow the team, improve our people development programs, and position our company as a leading employer.

In his new role, Steve will focus even further on the responsibility of defining Rocky Mountaineer’s longer term vision. Anyone who has spent more than a few minutes speaking with Steve knows he is truly passionate about Rocky Mountaineer and has ambitious, exciting plans for this company. With his continued leadership, Rocky Mountaineer will make great strides in building on their existing product and expanding into new products and markets.

CCCTA Marketing Celebrates Successful Campaign
After a successful launch in late 2018 of its $450k MRDT marketing campaign, Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism is pleased to announce some impressive numbers.

City of Nanaimo and Tourism Vancouver Island Sign Five-year Service Agreement
The City of Nanaimo has awarded a five-year service contract to Tourism Vancouver Island. The agreement is set for April 1, 2019 through March 31, 2024. The contract will include tourism marketing and visitor servicing.

Tourism Vancouver Island and the city are looking forward to a five year strategy, “celebrating our shared history, building our shared future” to drive visitor volume and increase in tourism infrastructure making Nanaimo an even better place to visit, live and do business.
Meetings Mean Business
Meetings Mean Business Canada (MMBC) recently reported results of a 2017  Global Economic Impact Study that validated the importance of business events worldwide. The study sites that business events generated more than $1 trillion in direct spending, over 10 million in direct jobs, and globally generated $621 billion in GDP.

The study also confirmed some economic drivers for Canada. Canada ranked sixth out of the top 50 countries with $33 billion in spending, 229,000 jobs and $19.3 billion in GDP.

During the Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC) conference this past November, participants heard that the Tourism industry in Canada is a $95 billion industry, and that business travelers are worth four times (4x) a leisure traveler from an economic impact perspective.

Destination BC Renews Support for Indigenous Tourism with $1 Million in Funding

Destination British Columbia is providing $1 million in funding to the Indigenous Tourism Association of BC (ITBC) to create new products and experiences to present to the global market.

ITBC has led the way in solidifying BC’s position as a world leader in Indigenous Tourism, supporting the growth of the sector in a sustainable and meaningful way. And visitors to the province are taking note. Indigenous tourism celebrated a record-breaking year in 2017 after generating $705 million in gross domestic output for the province, and demand continues to rise.

There are currently 401 Indigenous tourism-related businesses operating in the province, up from 267 in 2014. Together, these businesses create more than 7,400 full-time jobs. Over the next two years, Indigenous Tourism operators are expected to welcome 7.2 million visitors.

For full details, visit:
Numbers You Need to Know
Overnight Customs Entries to BC and Canada
October 2018

BC welcomed 349,406 international overnight visitors in October 2018, up 5.8% over October 2017. Canada welcomed 1,548,743 in October, down .2% over 2017. Year-to-date BC has welcomed over 5.3 million visitors, up 7.1%; Canada welcomed 18.5 million guests, up 1.2% YTD.

For full details, visit Destination BC's Research at:
Tourism Fernie Master Planning Continues
Tourism Fernie is in the process of developing a Tourism Master Plan and a recently conducted a local survey. 583 residents, 113 businesses and over 20 user groups completed surveys for the Tourism Master Plan for Fernie, representing over 10% of the population. A few results are outlined below:
  • The average # of years living in Fernie was 15 years
  • 69% of residents participating in the survey did not work directly in the tourism industry
  • 88% of businesses participating said that over 25% of their revenues are from tourism, over 60% of businesses say over 50% of their revenues are from tourism, over 30% say over 75% of their revenues are from tourism
  • 86% of residents and 96% of businesses, indicated the benefits of tourism outweigh the negative impacts, but everyone was interested in ensuring tourism is managed and developed proactively
  • Top 3 Benefits of Tourism Identified – 1) Business, jobs & income opportunities, 2) Increased access to things that matter, such as trails, facilities, events, programs, culture, dining and shopping experiences, 3) Increased vibrancy and energy in the community
  • Top 3 Challenges – 1) Availability and affordability of housing 2) Overcrowding and capacity issues at peak periods in the year, 3) Loss of small-town feel
TOTA Finalist for UNWTO Award
The Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association is a finalist in the 15th Annual UNWTO Awards which recognize inspirational projects having made an invaluable contribution to advance sustainable tourism.
NY Times Best Travel Photographs of 2018 Feature Richmond
The New York Times recently posted a selection of the best pictures from the places they visited in the last year and Fisherman's Wharf in Steveston made the list!
Okanagan College Helps Local Wine Industry Professionals
Ryan Fipke is touted as success story from Okanagan College's Continuing Studies Department (Viticulture certificate). As tasting room manager and private sales at Tantalus Vineyards, and also co-owner of Vice & Virtue Brewery – one of newest additions to the Okanagan’s booming craft beer scene – Fipke has had many roles over the years, but has witnessed one constant: the importance of learning at every step along the way.
Passenger Counts Continue to Soar at YXX
Abbotsford International Airport had another record year in 2018, with two years of significant growth pushing passenger numbers closer to the one million mark. Around 840,000 passengers passed through the city-owned airport last year, up nearly 165,000 from the previous record-breaking year.
Big White Opens New Chair
Big White Ski Resort opened its new, $4-million Powder 2.0 quad chair last month. The lift provides skiers and boarders access to 13 fresh runs previously closed. With 137 chairs, the fixed grip Leitner Poma lift will increase upload capacity to 2,400 passengers per hour - 600 more than its predecessor.
James McDougall Inducted into Canada's Aviation Hall of Fame
McDougall began flying in 1975 and co-founded Harbour Air in 1982. His name has become synonymous with excellence in water-borne operations both in Canada and internationally largely through his company.  
Upcoming Industry Events
January 20-23, Victoria

February 27 - March 1
JW Marriott Parq Hotel, Vancouver

October 23-24, Nanaimo

November, Kelowna

Send us your event listings and we can include it on our list!
Learn More About TIABC