Executive Summary:

• Canadians want to travel: while safety is a key consideration in planning travel, data shows high interest in future international travel.

• If Canadians shift two thirds of their planned spend on international leisure travel towards domestic tourism, it will make up for the estimated $19 billion shortfall currently facing our visitor economy and help sustain 150,000 jobs.

• Recovery is forecasted to take years, but a significant increase in domestic travel can accelerate recovery by one year.

• The visitor economy saw unprecedented losses in 2020 alongside business closures and rising unemployment. The impact on tourism is greater than that experienced after 9/11, SARS and the 2008 economic crisis combined.

• Because of its service nature, tourism is the most impacted sector in the Canadian economy. Canada’s major cities have been hit the hardest by the loss of tourism revenue.

• While still significant, job loss was minimized through Government of Canada initiatives which include, among others, the Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP)

• Women , immigrants and youth, who make up the engine of the visitor economy, have been hardest hit by the impact of COVID 19 due to reduced operations, business closures and job loss.

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