The past seven months have brought huge increases in the number of international overnight visitors to British Columbia. According to recent reports released by Statistics Canada, the number of overnight visitors to B.C. in December 2010 was 6.6% higher than it was at the same time in 2009. This is especially impressive considering the mere 2.4% increase in Canada as a whole. The year also brought a 6.2% increase in the province’s largest tourism market, visitors from the United States.
Although the number of overnight visitors to British Colombia increased across the board in 2011, a series of winter storms across Europe resulted in a 6.2% decrease in European visitors in the month of December. However, the 6.2% increase in overnight visitors from the United States more than made up for the loss.
Margaret MacDiarmid, Canada’s Minister of Tourism, Trade and Investment attributes the marked increase in B.C. tourism to the province’s recent hosting of the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, which allowed countries around the world to see the beauty of British Columbia from their televisions. MacDiarmid is confident that this increased awareness of the province coordinated with marketing campaigns will result in a continued increase in tourism for the region.
To view more B.C. tourism stats and read the full news release, click here.