Canada has always been a very welcoming country to any and all citizens of the world population. As a result, the Canadian government has implemented a New Tourism Vision to increase the number of international tourists who are visiting the country by a total of 30 percent estimated to happen by 2021. This New Tourism Vision is an extensive 20-point plan that describes in detail the plans Canada has for its international visitors. Canada hopes to meet this plan and if the country is successful, Canada will be one of the top 10 most visited countries in the world, hopefully by 2025. Therefore, in this article, I will address the 20 points in the New Tourism Vision and what this means for Canada in the future.
Because Canada has always encouraged foreign nationals to visit Canada, part of the plan is already in place. As of right now, Canada is recognized as the top international destination for 2017 by The New York Times, Lonely Planet and Conde Nast. Canada is known worldwide for its welcoming culture, international festivals, lively cities, and last but most importantly, its stunning landscapes. In addition, Canada has always been a stable and secure environment with an up and coming world-class culinary scene and more. With all of these wonderful aspects in mind, it is not surprising that the tourism has increased substantially over the years.
Specifically, in the year 2015, the total amount of international visitors travelling to Canada increased by 7.5 percent to reach a total of 17.8 million tourists. Furthermore, in 2016, this number increased to a whopping 20 million tourists, which is a further increase of 11 percent. Given this statistical information, an increase of 30 percent between now and 2021 is definitely achievable.
The main question to ask is how will Canada be able to achieve this? With the help of the New Tourism Vision, the Canadian government will be able to increase the funding for marketing abroad, support the renewal of products and services already on offer, as well as make Canada accessible for international travelers, just to name a few. Below, I have outlined the 20-point plan outlined in the New Tourism Vision. For further details on each point, please visit the government of Canada website.
The New Tourism Vision 20-point plan:
Stabilized funding for Destination Canada
The Connecting America Campaign
The Millennial Travel Program
Harnessing the Digital Economy and Innovative Technologies
Lifting the Visa Requirement for Mexican Nationals
Expanding the Visa Application Centre Network
Expansion of the Electronic Travel Authorization Program
Liberalizing Canada’s Bilateral Air Transport Agreements
Exploring options to clarify the permitting requirements for the Northern Cruise Line industry
Improving Accessible Transportation in Canada
Growing Indigenous Tourism
A Strategic Plan for the Chinese Market
Growing LGBTQ2 Tourism
Distinguishing Canada as a premier tourism destination through Canada’s national parks
Growing Culinary Tourism
Celebrating Canada’s Francophone heritage
Promoting Canadian Arts and Culture internationally
Investing in our Regionally Diverse Tourism Offering
Investing in tourism sector jobs and skills training
Strengthening Canada’s Tourism Data and Metrics
It is important to note that part of this plan mentions a strategic plan for the Chinese Market. Specifically, the Canadian government has set a higher target for this market with plans to double the amount of Chinese tourists coming to Canada over the span of the next four years. Additionally, Canada also has plans to invite more American visitors as the U.S. leisure market already accounts for 70 percent of Canada’s overnight tourists. The relationship between Canada and the U.S. has always been strong as the U.S. is Canada’s largest source of international tourists.
Another exciting plan that Canada has addressed is the expanding of the electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) system to new markets around the world. For instance, just recently, Brazilians, Bulgarians and Romanians have now become visa-exempt and may travel to Canada with an eTA. Also, another big market that Canada has now expanded to is Mexico, and now they are visa-exempt as well and only require an eTA to travel to Canada.
For the countries that still require a visa to travel to Canada, this was also considered as part of the plan. Canada is intending to expand their visa application centers (VACs) around the world. For instance, in China, Canada will expand their VACs and open seven new ones – this will double the current VACs in China. The goal of expanding new VACs is to increase the number of tourists coming from China in the upcoming years.
Canada is a very welcoming country that would like for their tourists to have the opportunity to explore and discovery all of the wonders of their beautiful country. As stated on the Ontario license plate, Ontario is “yours to discover” much like the rest of the nation. There are many different things to do and see in Canada and prospect tourists will learn that once they do so, it will be an experience they will never forget. However, tourists should always research ahead of time what is exactly required of them in order to come to Canada. For instance, whether they need to apply for an eTA or a visa and what documentation they need to provide in accordance with the specific application. It is important to give yourself enough time prior to travelling Canada in order to get the appropriate authorized travel document.
If you wish to apply for a Temporary Resident Visa and you are a foreign national, we can help you with this process. If you are from an international country and are unsure whether your country is visa-exempt or visa-required, we suggest you look on your government website to find out prior to applying. Applying for a Temporary Resident Visa can be confusing if you are unfamiliar with how Immigration applications work. Moreover, any Immigration application can become overwhelming if done alone; therefore, it is highly recommended that you seek out professional and experienced help before attempting to submit an application. Here, at Akrami & Associates, we work and have experience with many different immigration issues. We have helped many of our clients receive Temporary Resident Visas in order to travel to Canada. If you believe that you might be eligible, please feel free to contact Akrami & Associates at our office at 416-477-2545 for more information or if you would like to book a consultation with an immigration professional for more advise.
With Akrami & Associates there is always a way!!