July 6, 2017
The Voice of the BC Tourism Industry

CEO's Message
I'm a proud Canadian but admittedly have had a hard time getting excited about Canada's 150th birthday. Part of it is because 150 doesn't feel very old compared to so many of the world's countries, not to mention the fact that even some Canadian cities are more than 150 years old. Another reason is that, other than wedding anniversaries, I only think of significant historical milestones in terms of centuries. Frankly, I couldn't see what all the fuss was about for Canada 150.
However, I came to my senses on Canada Day when I joined the hundreds of thousands of patriotic Canadians in downtown Vancouver and the West Vancouver waterfront to commemorate our great nation's birth. To see people of all ages, ethnicities and abilities celebrate the fact that they were born here or have become citizens can't help but evoke feelings of pride and thankfulness for who we are as Canadians and the quality of life we're afforded through hard work, sacrifice by our soldiers, a stable political climate, the vision of our forefathers, and a multitude of other reasons.
So whether it's 150, 151 or whatever number, each year acknowledging and celebrating Confederation is extremely important...as I was reminded of again a few days ago on Canada Day.

On a similar note, I visited my American cousin in Birch Bay for the U.S.A. 4th of July celebration which was an experience I won't soon forget. After literally two hours of fireworks (ignited by locals) along the peninsula without one second of silence, I finally had to leave to protect my hearing. As I departed, I noted the difference between Canadians and Americans on celebrating our respective birthdays: Canadians wait patiently all day for night to fall to watch a 20 minute professional fireworks show before going home to bed.  Americans start their fireworks the night before Independence Day and carry on for more than 24 hours straight. Like us, they too are proud of their country and take the opportunity to let the world know it...albeit with much more aplomb.
As I approached the border to return to Canada, I couldn't help but notice hundreds of Canadians had taken a seat on the lawns around the Peace Arch enjoying the display of fireworks put on by the City of Blaine.  Canadians celebrating with their American cousins and vice-versa...the way it should be.
So how does all of this relate to the work that TIABC and many of our B.C. tourism industry colleagues do? In short, we regularly learn from and work with our U.S. tourism counterparts on issues such as pre-clearance, infrastructure improvements, direct air access, climate change, short-term vacation rentals, invasive species, environmental sustainability, and even funding for tourism marketing, among other issues. As you know, British Columbia and Washington State rely heavily on each other to foster cross-border visitation to sustain and build our respective visitor economies.
In that context, later this month I'll be attending the Pacific North-West Economic Region's (PNWER) annual summit in Portland to present on best-practice models for funding tourism marketing and the economic impacts of such. Not only will I be able to tout the benefits of the MRDT program, I will show how B.C. DMOs are generating significant returns for their local communities by attracting record numbers of visitors through effective marketing investments and strong partnerships. At the same time, I'm looking forward to learning about other tourism-related topics from my American colleagues who are always engaging, knowledgeable and keen to share.
Incidently, TIABC board member and CEO of Tourism Victoria, Paul Nursey is also part of the tourism session, while Dave Cowan, CEO of the Butchart Gardens serves as PNWER's Tourism Co-chair. Both are highly regarded within PNWER circles, particularly south of the border.
On the heels of our respective July holiday celebrations, I'm looking forward to my return visit to the U.S.A. in a couple of weeks. And for the first time, I'll proudly wear the lapel pin I was given by a PNWER colleague that depicts both the Canadian and American flags as a symbol of friendship and as a reminder of how closely we lean on each other in spite of our differences.

Walt Judas

Save the Date: TIABC AGM & Summit - October 12

TIABC's AGM and one-day Summit takes place October 12th in Richmond in conjunction with an annual general meeting by Aboriginal Tourism B.C. The day also includes a  Town Hall with participation by TIAC, Destination Canada and Aboriginal Tourism Canada. 

Stay tuned for more details.

 Download TIABC's Wildfire PSA

Summer, hot weather and wildfires are upon us. Please take the opportunity to remind visitors and residents of their responsibility for preventing wildfires fires by downloading our wildfire public service announcement. 

Numbers You Need to Know

B.C. Cities Are Some of the Most Attractive Travel Destinations for Canadians 
Insights West

Over half of Canadians reported that Vancouver (54%) and Victoria (53%) are "very appealing" travel destinations, according to a new Insights West survey.  The two cities are behind only Banffat 60%.

In the next six months, however, Toronto will be the top choice for Canadian travellers as 34% reported they intend to take an overnight leisure trip there.

Three other cities will be visited by at least one-in-five travellers before the end of the year: Ottawa (26%), Montreal (23%) and Calgary (21%).

New Canadian Survey Finds B.C. is the Top Dream Destination
Ranking first or second among Canadians in every region, B.C. is the most desired province for domestic travel according to a new survey from St. Joseph Media's Strategic Content Labs. The only provinces that didn't rank their western counterpart as number one were Ontario and Québec where locals narrowly preferred their own provinces.
Canadians chose Vancouver Island as the ideal "ultimate" Canadian vacation with the City of Vancouver coming in a close second. The one exception was among Québec citizens, where Québec City rises to the top position and Vancouver drops to fourth. Rounding out the overall top five were Lake Louise, Québec City and Cape Breton Highlands.
Survey based on 1,007 respondents, and conducted by Strategic Content Labs from April 18-23. Sampling and survey execution provided by AskingCanadians.  

BC Hospitality Foundation Golf Tournament
Westwood Plateau Golf & Country Club - Coquitlam  
Monday July 10th 2017

This is your opportunity to connect with others in the hospitality industry and to enjoy a great day of golf, fun, food and beverages while raising money to support beneficiaries of the British Columbia Hospitality Foundation (BCHF). 

The BCHF is a charity that raises funds to support those in the hospitality industry facing financial crisis due to a health issue. Each year hundreds of hospitality workers across B.C. face financial challenges and have no one else to turn to. The BCHF helps them when all other options have been exhausted.  The BCHF also offers scholarship programs to foster the development of the next generation of workers and industry leaders.These scholarships are awarded to students enrolled in hospitality, culinary, sommelier, beverage and other hospitality-related programs in B.C.

Last year our industry helped raise over $110,000 for the BCHF. Golfers can register by contacting Rowena Veylan: at rowena@bchospitalityfoundation.com  or  1-604-971-4543 .   Limited spots remaining.

Tourism Industry Partners Golf Tournament
Fairmont Chateau Whistler Golf Club
Friday August 25th 2017
The Tourism Industry Partners Invitational Golf Tournament was established 11 years ago to foster future generations of tourism professionals through scholarships and awards raised primarily through the annual golf tournament.  With the goal of placing the funds directly into the hands of the students and programs, $60K in scholarships and awards are distributed to students and programs on an annual basis.  In the past 10 years, over $450,000 has been raised to fund scholarships and awards for future tourism professionals, 

Event details:
  • 9:00am: Industry networking brunch and registration on the Woodlands Terrace
  • 11:30am: Shotgun start begins the day of scenic mountain golf at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler Golf Club
  • 6:00pm: Cocktails and networking
  • 7:00pm: Dinner and award presentations.
Register  your foursome by August 1st, 2017. http://tipgolf.ca/event-details/

150 Reasons to Love Working in #BCTourism

Thank you to everyone who entered go2HR's contest: 150 Reasons to Love Working in #BCTourism! They received so many great responses from tourism professionals which shows how much passion exists in this fantastic industry and province.

Keep an eye on go2HR's  Twitter and  Facebook accounts as they share some of your reasons as to why you love working in #BCTourism. All 150 reasons will be compiled on  go2HR's website over the next six months.


Booking Tips for Last Minute Campers

  1. Determine how far you want to drive and the direction you wish to go in.
  2. Determine what activities you want to do and campground amenities you are looking for (example: lakefront, boating, hiking, washrooms, or a playground).
  3. Visit the Where to Camp page which plots over 1,500 campgrounds (BC Parks, Parks Canada, private RV Parks/Campgrounds and front country Recreation Camping Sites) across the province.
  4. Select the type of campsite, region and amenities you are looking for and click search.  Look through the campgrounds that fit your criteria and narrow down your top choices.
  5. Phone or email the campground well in advance of your trip to ask any questions.
  6. Make your reservation by phone, email or online.
  7. Even popular sites often have a few spots available mere days out from major holidays, so it doesn't hurt to check.
  8. If there are less than 7 days to plan your summer trip be prepared to contact multiple campgrounds to secure your spot and the likelihood of driving further.
  9. Finding sites four or less hours from major urban centres is difficult on summer weekends so look to travel 6 - 8 hours
  10. Wet summers create availability so last minute travellers can often find spaces.
  11. Camp Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in high demand areas.
  12. Travel through the North Cariboo region or Northern BC as many sites are available on a nightly drop-in basis.
  13. Arrive at campgrounds mid-week to secure first come first serve sites for the weekend.
  14. Piggyback with friends as many campgrounds allow up to four adults per site.
Create Memories .... Go Camping!

The Camping and RVing BC Coalition  was formed in 2008 with the support of Destination British Columbia to better position the provincial camping and RVing experience and to capitalize on the growth of nature-based tourism. Coalition members currently include BC Parks, BC Lodging & Campgrounds Association, Recreation Sites and Trails BC, RV Rental Association of Canada, Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association, Kootenay Rockies Tourism, BC Society of Parks Facility Operators, Parks Canada, Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association of British Columbia and the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC.

Joss Penny
Chair, Camping and RVing BC Coalition

Tourism Kelowna CEO Steps Down

After more than 17 years with Tourism Kelowna, president and CEO, Nancy Cameron has decided to leave her position to relocate with her family to Vancouver Island.

Understanding the extraordinary tourism potential of Kelowna and area, Cameron is responsible for evolving Tourism Kelowna into one of British Columbia's top DMOs. The organization has seen remarkable success under her leadership including the implementation of sustainable, performance-based funding through the municipal and regional district tax, a 60% increase in the number of annual visitors to Kelowna and the Central Okanagan, and most recently, the approval from City Council to relocate the Visitor Centre to a more pedestrian friendly, prominent location.

TIABC wishes Nancy the very best in her transition to Nanaimo.

City of Nanaimo - Tourism Delivery Plans

In the fall of 2016, Nanaimo's City Council approved recommendations to change how publicly-funded tourism services, previously administered by the Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation (NEDC), were to be delivered in Nanaimo.
  • The City of Nanaimo signed a service agreement with Tourism Vancouver Island (TVI) for destination marketing and development services. The agreement, which started on February 1st, is set to run through March 31, 2018 and is structured to run parallel with the Tourism Advisory Committee (TAC).
  • Information services at the city-owned Nanaimo Visitor Centre are now being staffed by the city through 2017.
  • A call for membership for a Tourism Advisory Committee was issued on March 2nd. Those committee members have now been appointed and work is underway.
  • An RFP for a tourism advisory consultant was issued - the successful proponent has been chosen and work with the committee is underway.
For further details, visit: www.nanaimo.ca/goto/tourism


Victoria Celebrates Seven Millionth Cruise Passenger
Royal Caribbean's Explorer of the Seas brought Victoria's seven millionth cruise passenger to Ogden Point on June 22. Traditional dancers greeted the ship and the lucky passenger was treated to complimentary tours of the capital city. 

Victoria began as a cruise destination in 1978 with 20,000 visitors arriving on 30 ships. The one millionth visitor arrived in 2003, and today the city is one of Canada's busiest ports of call. A recently released report, commissioned by Cruise Lines International Association, revealed that the cruise industry brings direct economic value of $130 million to the Victoria regional annually, an increase of $30 million over 2012. 

Tourism Kamloops Opens New Downtown Visitor Centre 

Tourism Kamloops has opened a new downtown visitor centre location to welcome what is expected to be an increased number of guests and visitors this summer. 

The downtown visitor centre came to life through a partnership between the Rocky Mountaineer, the Kamloops Blazers Hockey Club and the City of Kamloops. 

Tourism Richmond Launches Hop-On, Hop-Off Attraction Tour 
The Richmond Hop-On, Hop-Off Attraction Tour is a partnership between Tourism Richmond and the
Vancouver Trolley Company, Richmond Olympic Oval, Richmond Hotel Association, McArthurGlen
Designer Outlet, River Rock Casino Resort, and the Pacific Gateway Hotel. Designed to connect the
important tourist spots in Central Richmond and Steveston, the tour is available from Wednesday to
Sunday each week, plus holiday Mondays. Each Richmond Hop-On, Hop-Off Attraction Tour ticket
includes admission to the Richmond Olympic Experience.

YLW Breaks Passenger Records for Month of May
143,061 passengers travelled through YLW in May, up 12.9% since May 2016, and beating passenger records for the same month in all previous years.  At the same time, the number of passengers for May was the lowest recorded for any month this year.

The news follows YLW recording its  busiest month on record when it served 173,504 passengers in March 2017.  To keep up with increasing traffic,  expansion plans  are already in the works for YLW.

Tourism Kamloops Kamera Krew Campaign 

What do the BC Lions, a couple from the United Kingdom and CFJC Today's Susan Edgell have in common? They all now know first hand what it means to be Boldly Unscripted in Kamloops and they have the video to prove it!

"As far as I'm concerned, nobody is off limits", explains Tourism Kamloops CEO, Beverley DeSantis, referring to the organization's #YKA360 Kamera Krew campaign, which has been in the market for just over one month. "You may think you are stopping in Kamloops to fill up on gas and suddenly find yourself jumping out of an airplane, experiencing a wine tour or playing a round of golf - we have buckets full of challenges for anyone feeling bold and wanting to try something unscripted", says DeSantis.

For the next year, Tourism Kamloops will be intercepting visitors and locals, presenting them with challenge cards, capturing their boldly unscripted moments on video and posting them online for the world to see. The Kamera Krew is already creating buzz online in Kamloops and around the world.
"Every time we challenge someone and post a video, we see a lot of liking, sharing and excitement about the content. Everyone is talking about the Kamera Krew", says DeSantis. "We wanted our campaign to make people pay attention to Kamloops. To hit people right between the lookers - and this is exactly what is happening".    

To date, Tourism Kamloops has posted six very different videos of people taking the #YKA360 challenge, resulting in over 83,000 impressions, 28,500 video views, 755 post likes and 105 retweets and shares. The most popular video to date has been with the BC Lions - Some players thought they were coming to Kamloops for training camp, but found themselves in various competitions in one of our swimming pools - that's what being Boldly Unscripted is all about. 
For more information about Tourism Kamloops, visit www.tourismkamloops.com.

Mountain Bike Tourism Symposium
Registration Open

Mountain biking has seen tremendous growth in the past decade and with that success comes new challenges and opportunities.  LEARN from those that have been working within the spectrum of mountain biking.  SHARE your own stories with fellow delegates and presenters.  RIDE some of the best trails in BC!

Stewardship is the core theme for this year's event and emphasizes the importance of taking care of our trails, our businesses, and our industry. The symposium will highlight many examples of good stewardship and underscore the need for increasing capacity to ensure a sustainable future.
Special Early Bird Rate - r egister for the Full Symposium before  midnight   July 31st  for only $205+GST. mtbtourismsymposium.ca

Revelstoke is going to have plenty in store no matter what your interests are.  In addition to the enlightening and engaging presentations at the symposium, there will be other activities and events going on that will make your visit both productive and fun!   Here is a brief look at the activities.
  • Pre-symposium IMBA Canada Trail Building Workshop; September 12 & 13
  • Welcome Reception; September 13th (evening)
  • Two full days of sessions, guided rides and social events; September 14 & 15
  • Stay for the weekend and enjoy Bikefest Revelstoke; September 15-17
Call for Presentations
Do you have a great story to tell?  Have you finally achieved your goal or found a solution to a long standing issue that others may benefit from learning about?  If you are interested in presenting at the symposium, please share your ideas.  Submissions are welcome that relate to building capacity and how mountain biking can help create new opportunities in our communities as well as address some of the challenges we face.  

TVI 54th Annual Conference and AGM
Registration Open
Early Bird Registration pricing is $389.00.
For more information on the speakers, activities and accommodation visit:

2017 Kootenay Rockies Tourism 
Industry Conference & AGM
Registration Open
In this Issue
Quick Links