CTC News

February 2013: the ins and outs for Canada travel.

Chinese New Year prompted a surge in visitors from Asia, but overall international visitor numbers dipped, reports CTC Tourism Snapshot.

02 May 2013

Just under three-quarters of a million international travellers made their way to Canadian shores in February 2013. The total was down 0.6% on the previous year, but the picture was complicated by lunar vicissitudes, according to the latest Tourism Snapshot from the Canadian Tourism Commission(CTC)’s Research department.

Here are some key stats:

  • The Chinese New Year caused a stratospheric spike in growth from the China market, which saw visitor numbers climb 80% in February 2013.
  • However, because the Chinese New Year celebration is not in the same calendar month each year (it is linked to a lunar calendar), this causes unusual spikes and dips in year-on-year results. Averaging January and February 2013 together provides a more balanced view of this emerging giant market: a robust 21% surge in Chinese consumers travelling east to Canada.
  • There were mixed results in CTC’s other Asian markets: Japan (8%) saw lift-off in February 2013, but South Korea (-7%) and India (-3%) awaited clearance on the runway.
  • It was another month of corking stats for the Australia market, which raised its bat to the pavilion to salute another 6% gain in visitor numbers to Canada.
  • Our American cousins were not so keen on heading north to Canada in February 2013, with declines in auto arrivals and air travel providing the undercurrents for a 2% year-on-year drop.
  • Continued economic uncertainty left winter vacation plans in shreds in CTC’s European markets in February 2013: France (-17%), the UK (-9%) and Germany (-8%) all registered sharp declines in traveller numbers crossing the Atlantic to Canada.
  • Canadian outbound travel picked up steam again in February 2013: a 2% uptick saw the total number of trips reach 2.4 million.
  • Canadians took more trips to the US in February 2013 than you can shake a stick at: the border crossing saw1.5 million trips, up 7% year-on-year.
  • Shaky job prospects dented Canadian optimism in February 2013. The Index of Consumer Confidence, released by The Conference Board of Canada, dipped 2.2 points to 80.8.
  • The Americans looked set to put a winter of discontent behind them. The Conference BoardConsumer Confidence Index soared 9.6 points in February 2013 to 68.

The Tourism Snapshot examines statistics and travel trends up to Feb. 28, 2013, in CTC’s—and partners’—key global markets.

Read the Tourism Snapshot –February 2013 in full.



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