Tourism contributes to the high quality of life in British Columbia by supporting arts, sports, Indigenous culture, historical assets, festivals and events, restaurants and pubs, parks and recreation, outdoor adventure, among other sectors and activities. Authoritative international studies (pre-COVID) have also shown that tourism brings significant international benefits through trade and investment, education, infrastructure development, and immigration.
Unlike other major industries in Canada that are represented by a handful of large companies and a united voice, the tourism industry is comprised of thousands of mostly small businesses whose voices are often unheard due to a cacophony of fragmented interests and a historical lack of strategic leadership. TIABC and its industry partners in British Columbia must come together to strengthen our collective voice – to fully capture the opportunity ahead and address the obstacles hampering industry growth. It is time to tell our story.
The Value of Tourism in BC’s Communities – Cariboo Region
Community Amenities – Visitors not only take advantage and enjoy community amenities, they often drive new opportunities for local development including but not limited to: highway and airport improvements, Wi-Fi networks, hotels, museums, meeting venues, attractions, arts & cultural amenities, attractions, experiences and more. Communities around the province have used the money collected by tourists to enhance or build infrastructure for the benefit of both residents and visitors alike.
The Value of Tourism to British Columbia
Diversity & Inclusion – The tourism industry is built on being inclusive…welcoming people of all nationalities, abilities, religion, sex, age, and income level. It is also a major employer of young people, women, immigrants, people with disabilities, and segments of society under-represented in other industries. BC is considered a leader in accessibility with policies and actions that allow people from all walks of life to participate in a multitude of activities, as well as visit every region of the province.
Workforce – BC’s tourism industry consists of a wide range of jobs from frontline personnel to senior executives and everything in between. Aside from tourism being a first job for many young people, it also produces long-term, rewarding, and lucrative careers for tens of thousands of residents across the province. The opportunities for a first job or a well-paying, long-term career in tourism are endless.
Culture – Tourism is in our community’s DNA. Residents are welcoming and care about the visitors who frequent local attractions, spend money in retail outlets and restaurants, stay in local accommodations, and help residents learn about other cultures. Many residents were first visitors who returned to settle in a community, start a business, create jobs, contribute to the social, economic and cultural fabric, and helped enhance the quality of life of all residents.
The Value of Tourism to Reconciliation
Reconciliation – Tourism bridges the cultural divide and creates better futures for all people by sharing knowledge, culture, and traditions…in this case through Indigenous peoples. In the context of truth and reconciliation, truth comes from Indigenous people sharing Indigenous stories from a First Nations perspective. As well, Indigenous tourism is not only a means for Indigenous peoples to generate economic benefits and provide employment for all generations, it provides visitors with a chance to explore BC and experience the land from those who know it best.