Waking From Hibernation: British Columbia’s Travel Markets Outlook to 2025

The Conference Board of Canada, 15 pages, September 10, 2021
Issue briefing
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This report contains a review of and outlook for tourism activity in British Columbia, assessing the impact of COVID-19 and the public health restrictions on tourism. It examines domestic, U.S., and overseas activity.

Document Highlights

  • We expect tourism will start to recover in British Columbia during the second half of this year. B.C. has entered Step 3 of its four-step restart program, and the removal of all restrictions in Step 4 may start in September at the earliest.
  • Total visits to the province are forecast to increase by 37.8 per cent this year.
  • B.C. is known for its wide range of attractions, and the province has abundant opportunities for outdoor, low-density tourism that will appeal to post-pandemic travellers. As B.C.’s tourism operators rebuild traveller confidence and market further to American and overseas visitors, we expect that recovery to pre-pandemic levels is in the cards for 2023.
  • Vancouver’s recovery path will broadly resemble that of B.C.’s recovery though at a slightly slower pace. Metropolitan tourism, in general, will likely need a sustained and broader restoration of confidence to win over visitors. Total visits to Vancouver will climb back to pre-pandemic levels only by 2023.
  • There are significant downside risks, including the potential for a variant outbreak and a fourth wave of the virus. Our forecast assumes that vaccination levels continue to rise in B.C. and across its major visitor source markets.

Table of Contents

Key findings
British Columbia snapshot
Domestic activity
United States and overseas
City highlight
Overall performance

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