Home Business & Economy Tourism Economic boost: Destination BC ready for travellers

Economic boost: Destination BC ready for travellers

Tourism jobs are vital to local economies across British Columbia.

Tuesday July 6, 2021 | VICTORIA, BC

by Jalen Codrington | Island Social Trends  | Editor: Mary P Brooke, B.Sc.

Tourism owners and operators are ready to welcome back visitors
to their hotels, Airbnb’s, patios, wineries, resorts, and more.

Recreational travel across BC and Canada is currently allowed even though COVID-19 is still in our midst, as per Step 3 of the BC Restart Plan met on July 1. The four-step re-emergence from the pandemic in BC is based on levels of first-dose immunization; however, to be fully vaccinated, people need to have received two doses of an approved COVID vaccine.

Dr Bonnie Henry
Provincial Health Officer Dr Bonnie Henry during COVID modelling update on June 28, 2021.

On June 29, Premier John Horgan announced that BC would lift the pandemic state of emergency as part of the go-ahead for Step 3 of its restart plan, effective July 1, 2021.

As of July 5, the vaccination rate in BC (among all persons age 12+) is 78.0% for first dose, and 36.0% for second dose, according to the BC Centre for Disease Control.

Meanwhile, Melanie Mark, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport; Brenda Baptiste, chair, Indigenous Tourism BC; Walt Judas, CEO, Tourism Industry Association of BC; Ingrid Jarrett, president and CEO, BC Hotel Association; Anthony Everett, chair, BC Regional Tourism Secretariat; and Richard Porges, interim president and CEO, Destination BC, yesterday released a statement encouraging British Columbians to travel throughout BC this summer:

Travel is part of our DNA. It gives us something to look forward to. It brings us joy to experience new places, new tastes and new ideas. It’s the perfect antidote to recharge, connect with friends and families and create new memories. Tourism is fueled by people who are passionate about their work – their jobs are vital to our local economies all across British Columbia.”

When travelling the province, masks are no longer mandated within indoor public spaces, but recommended for all people not fully vaccinated.

melanie mark
Melanie Mark, tourism minister [Dec 2020 file photo]

There is no recommendation that business owners ask for proof of vaccination from customers. Neither can employers mandate that employees be vaccinated. However, the government says business owners can offer incentives such as bonus pay and paid leave for workers to get vaccinations.

While many communities will be eager to welcome visitors to support their local economy, there are some rural and Indigenous communities that may still be hesitant. DestinationBC asks all travellers, including those hunting and fishing, to do their research before they leave home, and respect the wishes of local communities.

“Summer 2021 is your chance to complete your BC bucket list. It’s your chance to give back to the businesses who supported the health and safety of our communities and essential services to keep us all safe. Inspire your family, friends and colleagues to #exploreBCnow so everyone can see everything BC has to offer.”

Sooke Fine Arts Show, 2021
The 2021 Sooke Fine Arts Show runs July 23 through August 2 online.

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