January 18, 2018
The Voice of the BC Tourism Industry
Photo Credit:  Big White Ski Resort

CEO's Message

It sure didn't take long for 2018 to kick into high gear.  Seems everyone I talk to is in full sprint mode servicing guests, planning for the month's ahead or sorting through myriad issues. So if you missed information on what TIABC has been up to since the start of December, you're forgiven.  At the same time, perhaps I can fill in the blanks on some files that may be of interest.
Aside from ongoing preparations for the B.C. Tourism Industry Conference, which is less than two months away, this week I joined several of my professional colleagues from the Adventure Tourism Coalition for meetings in Victoria with various ministries to address specific issues and formulate a roadmap for implementation of the adventure tourism (AT) strategy. While the meetings were productive, there was consensus amongst the AT coalition that fulfilling its vision and implementing the strategy will take both time and patience, along with a lot of roll-up-the-sleeves hard work. Expect a progress report at the conference by Minister Beare.
Last week, I attended the public hearings on ride-sharing in Vancouver to not only meet informally with committee members, but to help inform TIABC's submission to the all-party committee on this important issue. I was also there to learn and gather information that we'll use for consideration of any proposed changes to TIABC's existing ride-sharing policy that will likely be in place and available to members by next month.
Next week, dozens of industry colleagues from across Canada will convene at the Impact Sustainability and Tourism Conference in Victoria where I'll be part of a panel to discuss the ramifications of climate change on our industry, particularly related to natural disasters. More specifically, I will have the chance to convey TIABC's observations on how the devastating wildfire situation affected operators and regions across the province, and how we as an industry can prepare for inevitable similar scenarios in future.
In between these activities, we provided support to a national group called Festivals and Major Events Canada's ( FAME) for an inspired proposal to establish a federal fund to support the growth of Canada's largest festivals and major events. FAME's initiative is aimed towards increasing visitation by international tourists, the result of which would generate additional jobs and economic impact throughout Canada, including British Columbia.
Other bits and bites: TIABC also endorsed a proposal by CMH Holidays to build a new heli-ski lodge at Castle Creek to extend its world-class operations and deliver an even better customer experience. W also recently conveyed our policy on short-term vacation rentals to Hon. Selena Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing with a follow-up meeting request to urge provincial government action on this file. And finally, we sent our Family Day submission to Premier Horgan with the objective of encouraging government to retain the annual date on the second Monday of every February.
Most of the information can be found on TIABC's website with more comprehensive reports available in the 'Members-only' section.
I encourage you to log in, peruse the files or reports that are of interest, engage with our social media channels and ultimately follow-up with any member of our staff and board if you have any comments, questions or suggestions. As always, we look forward to hearing from you.

One more thing...don't forget to register for the BC Tourism Industry Conference before the early-bird deadline for a chance to win a fabulous prize package courtesy of Big White Ski Resort. Our sincere thanks to Michael J. and his team for their support of TIABC and the conference.
Walt Judas, CEO 

Early-bird Registration Open 
With a Chance to Win a Fabulous Big White Prize!

March 7-9, 2018 in Kelowna


Very shortly, full program details will be available on the conference website.  You will also see regular emails highlighting exciting sessions, speakers and activities.

Register now and book your room at the Delta Hotel Grand Ok anagan Resort to secure your spot. 

TIABC Seeks Part-time Administrative Support

TIABC is looking for an administrator to work with our Board of Directors and committees assisting with meeting coordination, minute-taking, and other support duties. The number of hours is estimated to be 20 hours per month but may grow over time with additional responsibilities serving other sectors.

If you are interested in learning more, please contact us at info@tiabc.ca

TIABC Welcomes New Members

The Braemar Group of Hotels is  a commercial and hospitality development company in Western Canada. Their passion for success has resulted in over a 40 years of proven results. The Braemar Group's strategic growth has primarily been focused on commercial and hospitality development.  www.thebraemargroup.com

The BC River Outfitters Association represents commercial river-based operations. At the present time, membership is focused on the river rafting industry and their  32 members represent 85-90% of all rafting days in BC. 


Indigenous Tourism Helps Keep Stories Alive as International Interest Grows
"Interest is up especially from the U.S., Japan, China, the U.K., France and Germany, but overall has come up against a lack of capacity," said Keith Henry, CEO of the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada (ITAC).

ITAC's five-year plan is to create a minimum of 50 new export-ready businesses, as well as add more than 7,000 new jobs by 2021 to the 33,000 already there, which is up from around 12,000 people in the sector in 2002.  The goal, with help from $13 million from the federal government, is also to increase Indigenous tourism revenue by $300 million from the roughly $1.4 billion it currently generates.

"Indigenous tourism is also becoming a more significant part of marketing Canada as a whole," said David Goldstein, CEO of Destination Canada.  "Once they know this culture and this experience exists, it's a great differentiator, that's the business side.  There's a softer side to this, which is the important role tourism plays as a people-to-people connector. And I don't think you can truly understand Canada unless you have lived some of these experiences."

Abbotsford Airport Passenger Numbers Spike in 2017
Abbotsford International Airport had its busiest year by far in 2017 with passenger counts up by 28%.

A total of 677,653 passengers stopped at YXX throughout the year, according to the City of Abbotsford which owns the airport. That's up from about 530,000 passengers in 2016 which was itself a record year for the airport.

Community DMOs Launch Joint Project to Track Tourism Data
Tourism Vancouver Island, in partnership with Island and Sunshine Coast DMOs, are launching a project to track key tourism data at a local level with a goal to improve awareness and increase economic activity driven by visitor spending.

Funding from the Island Coastal Economic Trust will support the development of a common tourism data management and analysis system, which will facilitate regional data aggregation and comparison.  Approximately a dozen regional destination marketing organizations are expected to participate covering most major tourism destinations in the Island and Coastal region.

The project will track and present performance indicators in a collaborative, reliable, repeatable way so that the marketing organizations can adapt and evolve their marketing activities to meet the requirements of their target audiences.

Red Cross Support to Small Business Program: Phase 2
The B.C. government has launched its second phase of recovery funds for small businesses in the interior that were affected by the wildfires last summer.

Financial assistance is designed to at least partially compensate businesses for uninsured losses, insurance deductibles, minor repairs, cleanup, equipment and occupational training expenses. The Red Cross decides on the eligible amount for each application.

Air Canada to Launch New Domestic Routes for Summer 2018
Air Canada has announced new non-stop, seasonal services will begin next June from Toronto to Nanaimo and to Kamloops, and Montreal to Victoria. All new flights are now available for purchase at www.aircanada.com and through travel agents.

Numbers You Need to Know

2017 International Tourism Results: the Highest in Seven Years
Worldwide international tourist arrivals grew by a remarkable 7% in 2017 to reach a total of 1.3 billion, according to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. 

This is well above the sustained and consistent trend of 4% or higher growth since 2010 and represents the strongest results in seven years. S trong momentum is expected to continue in 2018 at a rate of 4-5%. For more information, visit:

Capilano University Seeks Tourism Partners

Capilano University is currently in search of Tourism partners who would like a senior group of students to apply their 4 years of education and expertise in an attempt to solve an organizational problem or opportunity. 

Applied Project Management in Tourism (TOUR 435) is a 4th year capstone course in the Tourism Management Degree program and runs January 2nd -April 20th, 2018. In this course, students will apply theory, concepts, tools and skills learned throughout their degree to a team-based project for an industry organization such as yours.  

Students will be formed into teams of 5 and assigned to a business where they will provide consulting services on a challenge or opportunity. The project could be related to marketing, finance, operations, human resources, strategy, event-related or other.  Teams will be well-rounded in their skills and will help identify, assess and make recommendations on, a business challenge or opportunity. 
If you or any of your team see an opportunity to mutually benefit from having a 4th year Tourism Management team of students in your organization, please review the Project definition document and reach out to: 

Cheryl Hurlbut

Vancouver Aquarium will no longer keep whales, dolphins in captivity

Guided by their vision of a world in which oceans are healthy and flourishing, the Vancouver Aquarium is as committed as ever to ocean conservation through innovative research, education and direct action.

The Aquarium will continue their commitment to ocean conservation, including through expanded public engagement, but they will do so without the display of whales or dolphins.

The Vancouver Aquarium will continue to be a world-class facility where they engage more than one million visitors annually to other vulnerable species, which will enable them to better focus on inspiring the global community to join their conservation efforts.

Watch the Vancouver Aquarium video regarding their recent decision: 

B.C.'s Restaurant Boom Leads to
Industry Labour Shortage

The B.C. Restaurant & Foodservices Association (BCRFA) recently completed six months of research on Vancouver's skills gap and employment shortage by talking to over 300 operators in the area funded by the Employment Program of B.C. The study found that the biggest crisis is in kitchens where positions are more difficult to fill. Some restaurants are now having to close once a week, while others want to expand but do not have enough key staff to start a new location.

The labour shortage has escalated in the last 12 months caused in part by changing demographics. BCRFA is looking for new sources of talent and working to help retain professionals already in the business. 

TOTA Nominated for  World Travel  & Tourism Council Destination Award

The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) is pleased to announce the 15 Finalists for its 2018 Tourism for Tomorrow Awards. The 2018 Finalists cut across five continents in the following categories: Community, Destination, Environment, Innovation and People.

The WTTC Tourism for Tomorrow Awards, now in its 14th year, showcases business practices of the highest standards that balance the needs of 'people, planet and profits' within our sector.
All 15 Finalists illustrate great commitment to support a change in policies, business practices and consumer behavior towards a more sustainable tourism sector.

Destination Award Finalists, who show commitment to supporting and delivering sustainable tourism best practices in their destinations:
* Corporación Parque Arví (Colombia)
* Riverwind Foundation (USA)
* Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association (Canada)


Congratulations TOTA!

Business Ambassadors to Help With 
Cariboo-Chilcotin Wildfire Recovery

Businesses and non-profit organizations in wildfire affected communities in the Cariboo-Chilcotin/Lillooet area will soon have additional support thanks to a partnership between Northern Development,  Community Futures Cariboo ChilcotinCommunity Futures North CaribooCommunity Futures Sun Country and the Cariboo-Chilcotin Beetle Action Coalition (CCBAC).

Thanks to this partnership, an Emergency Response Coordinator and Business Ambassadors will work from CFDC offices in Quesnel, Williams Lake and Ashcroft until  October 31st to help businesses access resources to help with wildfire recovery.

The new positions will help businesses assess the impact of the wildfires on their operations, match their needs to available programs and services, assist with appropriate referrals and application processes and collect information that can help communities better understand the wildfire impacts in order to support new program development.

These positions will be working in collaboration with other wildfire response programs to complement and promote resources available through organizations such as Emergency Management B.C., the Red Cross and the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development.

Learn more: 

Unfilled Positions + International Youth Travelers = Custom-Made for Each Other

Having trouble finding staff? Promote your jobs to international youth who have Canadian Working Holiday Visas in hand and are eager to come to B.C. to travel and work for you.

As a world class destination, British Columbia attracts not just tourists, but also many overseas youth and students looking for a working holiday. These international, mobile young people are eager to explore and work in various regions of B.C., and are a great fit if your business is situated in more rural or remote areas or is looking to fill temporary positions for busy seasons.

How do you connect with these great candidates? go2HR recently participated as an exhibitor at the World Youth and Student Travel Conference (WYSTC), the leading trade event for the global youth, student and educational travel industry. There we met with and shortlisted agencies from several countries that facilitate youth travel to Canada.

If you are a B.C. tourism employer and are interested in employing youth with working holiday visas (open work permit), contact us for a list of these agencies to get in touch with:
Emma Bradford
Industry HR Coordinator, go2HR
604-633-9787 ext. 234

Find out more about hiring international youth here: 

Who Makes Mountain Biking Happen 
in Your Town? 

BC Bike Race Announces the 8th Annual  Kazlaw Community Award

Bike Race B.C. is asking you to nominate a deserving rider in your community - someone you feel has earned this award.  Could be a trail builder, a volunteer, a young deserving rider, an organizer of a community club and the list goes on.  

Submit nominations by sending 500 words and a picture to karen@bcbikerace.com

For further details, visit: 
B.C. Bike Race is a seven day mountain bike adventure from North Vancouver to Whistler. BCBR is gearing up for its 12th year of delivering a life changing experience. The 12th edition will see over 327km, as well as highlighting feature trails and communities along the way.

Thom Killingsworth Elected 
Tourism Kelowna Chair

Over his career, Thom has held executive-level positions at several leading North American hotels and resorts including Fairmont Banff Springs, Fairmont Chateau Whistler, Fairmont Newport Beach, Sheraton Suites Calgary Eau Claire, and Predator Ridge Resort. Most recently, Thom was Chief Operating Officer with Inn-Trust Hospitality and the Argus Group whose Kelowna and area portfolio currently includes the Four Points by Sheraton Kelowna Airport, Gulfstream Restaurant, Hotel Eldorado Kelowna, Eldorado Marina, Manteo Resort Kelowna. Thom has recently taken the role of Executive Director with the Kelowna Yacht Club. 

Thom brings over 30 years of tourism and hospitality experience to his role as Chair at an important time of growth for both Tourism Kelowna and the Central Okanagan tourism industry. Thom has been a member of the Tourism Kelowna board since December 2013, most recently serving as Vice-Chair.

Know of Any Tourism Students Seeking Sponsorship to #BCTIC?






TIABC is seeking full-time tourism students studying in BC who wish to be considered for sponsorship to attend the BC Tourism Industry Conference. 


We currently have three sponsorships available thanks to two industry partners: Pacific Gateway Hotel (Richmond), Sun Peaks Grand Hotel & Conference Centre along with TIABC. We are hoping for more sponsorships and will update our progress in future newsletters. 


To learn more, visit our website at: www.tiabc.ca/bc-tourism-industry-conference

If you are interested, please let us know at info@tiabc.ca.

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