June 8, 2017
The Voice of the BC Tourism Industry

CEO's Message
I always enjoy visiting Ottawa in late spring when our nation's capital is typically warm, sunny, blooming and in high gear as MPs shuffle between sessions in the House of Commons and meetings with individuals like me representing B.C. interests.
While TIABC deals primarily with provincial MLAs and bureaucrats on various issues and opportunities, we also have good reason to support the work that other individual B.C. sector associations and our national counterparts at TIAC do on files that the federal government has direct influence over...hence the reason for my journey east.
During National Tourism Week, where there is likely more receptivity to meeting with the tourism industry, I had the opportunity to connect with B.C. MPs from all three parties to discuss issues that affect operators in their respective ridings. I would describe the conversations as cordial, direct, educational, and to some extent, encouraging. So, what did we talk about?  I'm glad you asked.
To cut to the chase, I provided each MP with a brief that included TIABC's and/or our sector partners' policy/position on various issues including:  labour (e.g. HUMA recommendations); airport privatization; campground assessments by CRA; GST rebate program for tour operators; and the proposed escalating excise tax on alcohol. I also referenced issues on TIABC's radar including climate change; pipelines/oil tankers; carbon pricing; marijuana legalization; and short-term rentals.
For virtually every MP, there were at least one or two issues where the implications of recent government policy or regulatory decisions on British Columbia's visitor economy were not fully understood.  From that perspective alone, the meetings were well worth the trip.  In fact, each MP either asked for more information, promised to follow-up with me, or committed to raising the issue with caucus or cabinet colleagues, as well as fellow MPs from other parties.
As we continue to wait patiently for the B.C. political landscape to unfold in order to move forward with our advocacy efforts in this province, we can at least advance issues at the federal government level in a more timely and intention way.
For the record, I left the beautiful weather behind in Vancouver.  Ottawa was wet. I've never seen rain fall harder as I ran from Parliament Hill back to my hotel.  Made me feel right at home.

Walt Judas

MP Pam Goldsmith-Jones (Liberal)
MP John Aldag (Liberal)
MP Gord Johns (NDP) and Tofino Mayor Josie Osborne
MP Richard Cannings (NDP)
Bardish Chagger - Minister of Small Business and Tourism

Tourism Week 2017 Highlights
Way to go B.C. for acknowledging and celebrating National Tourism Week.  And thanks to everyone who took the time to take pictures, stage events and get engaged in social media to let residents, decision-makers, media and government officials know that #BCTourismMatters (t he #BCTourismMatters hashtag now has over 218,000 impressions on Twitter alone). 

Here's a small sample of what our industry did to acknowledge TW2017. Don't forget to check out our  Facebook and Twitter pages for other details. 

Tourism Abbotsford created a terrific  #BCTourismMatters video.

Abbotsford celebrates National Tourism Week | #BCTourismMatters

Tourism New Westminster published a daily blog featuring their BIA, visitor centre, farmer's market, New Media Gallery, local coffee roaster, craft brewer, and a restaurateur. 

Shuswap Tourism hit the road with their personalized #BCTourismMatters sign and visited 12 tourism businesses to capture photos with stakeholders. 

Tourism Tofino hosted their first West Coast Connection: Tourism Trade Show that enabled stakeholders to discover what experiences to offer their guests this summer. The result was nearly 30 photos with the ir personalized  #BCTourismMatters sign.

The HelloPG Community Ambassador Fair was a chance for hospitality staff, event volunteers and enthusiastic locals to refresh their community knowledge for the up-coming travel season. The next day, Prince George hosted an open house and BBQ at the Visitor Information Centre where locals, dignitaries and visitors celebrated National Tourism Week. Check out their video of the celebration:

Tourism Vernon visited with stakeholders, posting videos and photos throughout the week including a  video interview with their mayor, Akbal Mund. There are also some excellent messages about tourism from visitors, volunteer visitor centre counsellors and the DMO manager. Check out their Facebook page:  www.facebook.com/Tourism.Vernon

Oliver kicked off the week by hosting the Half-Corked Marathon with their mayor and councillors reminding folks at the finish line that #BCTourismMatters! There were other excited folks in town too!


Check out our 3-minute video compilation of some of the images from #TourismWeek 2017 on TIABC's YouTube Channel:  www.youtube.com

Music Credit: Kevin MacLeod

Save the Date: TIABC AGM & Summit - October 12

TIABC's AGM and one-day Summit takes place October 12th in Richmond in conjunction with annual general meetings by BC Lodging and Campgrounds Association, as well as 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.

Complete the NAFTA Modernization Survey

One of TIABC's members, Dave Cowen of Butchart Gardens, is the tourism co-chair of the Pacific Northwest Economic Region.  Dave and Rep. Gael Tarleton will be hosting a session in Portland this coming July to assess any potential negative or positive impacts that the upcoming NAFTA modernization will have on tourism, travel and transportation.  As we know, business travel, supply lines and general trade help drive tourism, as well as support the transportation infrastructure that visitors to our respective countries use. As NAFTA modernizes, there may well be potential to disrupt or improve our regional tourism economy, and PNWER needs your opinion to help provide input to the negotiation process.  If your business depends on trade with the U.S. or Mexico, there may well be a NAFTA effect that impacts your business...hence the reason PNWER is trying to get on top of this issue.
Please see below for further details and a link to take the quick NAFTA survey.  This will help PNWER determine if there might be material risk or impact to the tourism and travel ecosystem.  If you take 10 minutes to answer the survey, PNWER will have some very good data to work with. 
Thank you for your support, and if you have a trusted colleague in the tourism, transportation or travel sectors, please forward this email to them. Please complete the survey within the next five working days.

For more information, visit:  www.pnwer.org 


In the most recent federal budget, the government increased the excise duty tax on alcohol products by 2%. The budget also proposes an annual automatic rate increase every year thereafter, as measured by the Consumer Price Index.

Liquor taxes are taxes not just on drinks, but also on jobs, hospitality, tourism, and middle-class Canadians. High Canadian liquor taxes hurt innovation, harm export development, and reduce alcohol manufacturers' purchases of cereal grains and fruits from local farmers. They make Canadian alcohol manufacturers, small, medium and large uncompetitive with producers in other countries.

However, both the House of Commons and Senate Finance Committees are reviewing the Budget implementation Bill (Bill C-44). 

The  Canadian Vintners Association, Beer Canada, Spirits Canada, and Restaurants Canada have launched a campaign to  let government know it is time to #CorkTheTax They are working to have an amendment introduced that would eliminate the annual automatic excise duty tax increase in future years. 

ABLE BC is joining this campaign and encourages all stakeholders to send an immediate message directly to your Member of Parliament  letting them know it is time to #CorkTheTax:  https://corkthetax.ca/#contact-your-mp  Government wants to conclude discussion on the budget bill ASAP.  You can also spread the word on social media using the hashtag #CorkTheTax

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact ABLE BC at  604-688-5560 or  info@ablebc.ca

Updated Resources Available from
 Tourism HR Canada

Tourism in Canada is facing a debilitating shortage of labour compounded by accelerated demand for tourism products and services. 

Tourism HR Canada has created a Tourism HR one-pager that outlines the key facts and figures, 5 Things that Need to be Done, The Ask and recent Government of Canada announcements related to this topic.

Please download Tourism HR Canada's Tourism HR one-pager here.

Tourism Labour Market Information by Federal Riding

Tourism HR Canada provides tourism Labour Market Information at the Federal riding level. These summaries provide information by riding on the number of tourism employees, tourism businesses, tourism employees as a percentage of the local labour force, and the share of the tourism labour force by industry segment (Accommodations, Food and Beverage, Travel Services, Entertainment and Recreation, and Transportation).

This information will be useful to stakeholders seeking an understanding of their labour market, workers seeking employment, and other tourism stakeholders. Data is available for all B.C. federal electoral districts. To request data for your riding, please contact  research@tourismhr.ca

Tourism Vancouver Island Announces
Retirement of Long-time President & CEO 

Tourism Vancouver Island's Board of Directors recently announced the upcoming retirement of longstanding CEO, Dave Petryk, effective December 1, 2017

After 17 years of leading B.C.'s oldest and original regional destination marketing organization, Dave has decided that it is time to enjoy retirement with his fabulous wife, Sandra, as they plan their move to Thailand. This announcement comes approximately six months prior to Dave's official retirement so business will continue to operate as usual during the recruitment period.

TIABC looks forward to formally acknowledging Dave for his outstanding contributions to B.C. tourism industry, as well as his support of our organization, at the Tourism Vancouver Island annual conference in September.

Numbers You Need to Know

Destination Canada's 2016 annual report, Welcoming the World highlights the importance of tourism to Canada's economy, and the results of Destination Canada's integrated international marketing campaigns.

In 2016, arrivals to Canada outpaced the world average nearly three-to-one. In Destination Canada's 12 international markets, arrivals grew by 11% over 2015. World growth, in contrast, grew at only 4%. This means Canada welcomed 19.97 million international overnight visitors in 2016, just shy of the record 20.06 million arrivals in 2002. Not since Expo 86 has Canada seen such a rise in demand.

Last Chance to Tell Us Why You Love Tourism  
In the tourism industry, we are extremely lucky to have the opportunity to share our love for this breathtaking country with visitors. To celebrate Canada's 150th birthday, go2HR is putting together 150 reasons why we love working in the BC tourism industry, and they need your input!

Share your love for working in BC's tourism industry in 150 words or less, and you could win one of two $150 Visa gift cards! 

Enter at www.go2hr.ca/contest Contest closes on June 11, 2017 at 11:59 pm (PT).


Explorer of the Seas Kicks off Nanaimo Cruise Ship Season
Tourism Nanaimo volunteers give tips and directions to passengers 
Nanaimo's 2017 cruise ship season set sail May 17th with  vis it  from Royal Caribbean Line's Explorer of the Seas.

The ship, with capacity for up to 3,800 passengers, tied up at Nanaimo's cruise ship terminal Wednesday morning for a 10-hour visit.  This is the second year Nanaimo is part of RC's cruise itinerary. Explorer of the Seas is one of six major cruise ships scheduled to visit Nanaimo this season, bringing an estimated $2.87 million in revenue to the mid-Island.

TIAC and ATAC Announce 
Strategic Partnership Agreement
The Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC) and Aboriginal Tourism Association of Canada (ATAC) signed a strategic partnership agreement to strengthen the relationship between both national tourism organizations. This agreement provides a unique opportunity for strategic alignment and collaboration between the two organizations to bolster the representation of indigenous tourism product in Canada and help promote continued tourism growth overall.

Among other things, through this agreement ATAC will be recognized as a TIAC Industry Patron increasing exposure of the important work being done to promote aboriginal tourism in Canada. TIAC will also promote and publish information and research conducted by ATAC about aboriginal tourism in Canada through its eNewsletter and website. 
Source http://tiac.travel

Funding Available to Establish a Provincial / Territorial Aboriginal Tourism Association 
ATAC is putting forward the call for applications through their 2017 Provincial and Territorial Aboriginal Tourism Association Funding Program, designed to strengthen the development of the Aboriginal tourism industry across Canada.

To increase revenues, employment growth, and the number of Aboriginal tourism businesses in the industry, ATAC will be offering funding to provinces and territories that apply for support in building and strengthening an industry-led, not-for-profit Aboriginal tourism association.

The new funding program, supported by  Indigenous & Northern Affairs Canada , asks Aboriginal representatives from Canadian provinces and territories, who do not already have established not-for-profit Aboriginal tourism organizations, to submit a formal request for support of up to $65,000 that may be awarded per province or territory. Representatives must specifically demonstrate how their proposal supports the establishment of a sustainable Aboriginal tourism association for their province or territory.
Provinces and territories with an established Aboriginal tourism association are also invited to apply and must indicate how their proposed investments directly support ATAC's five-year goals to increase Aboriginal tourism revenue, employment, and number of businesses. BC's association is Aboriginal Tourism BC

Funding applications may be submitted until June 30th by completing the appropriate application form available on the ATAC Corporate website.

June courses include:
  • Understanding the Finances
  • Finding New Markets
  • Marketing for Success
  • Protect Your Assets
  • Managing Employees
  • Getting your Product to Market. Literally.
  • Pitching to Work with Government
  • Developing Your Idea

Whether you're in Vancouver or not - Small Business BC services are accessible everywhere.
Attend seminars in-person at Small Business BC at Waterfront Station (601 West Cordova Street) in Vancouver, or join by live webinar. 

Ask the Expert sessions available in person or by Skype or phone.

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