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Canadian Tourism Commission reports travel bookings tied to Olympic tourism strategy

VANCOUVER, Feb. 10 /CNW/ - Travellers are putting down their money to vacation in Canada in the afterglow of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. Awareness of Canada as a tourism destination, created through the Games, is translating into travel bookings in the Canadian Tourism Commission's (CTC) core markets as a result of post-Games marketing campaigns.

Some of the highlights:

  • 290,000 British travellers were inspired by Canada's marketing campaigns to book flights to Canada—almost double 2009 and triple 2008 figures. Tourism revenues from this market were up over 2009 by $134 million (from $256 million to $380 million), reflecting the additional traffic.
  • Over 70,000 Australians shifted from considering a trip to Canada to making a firm booking in 2010—twice 2009 numbers. Revenues rose from $62 million to $117 million.
  • Some 128,000 German travellers were persuaded by CTC marketing campaigns to book a trip to Canada in 2010, up from 91,000 the previous year. Revenues rose by $61 million to $196 million.
  • CTC marketing campaigns convinced 120,000 French travellers to take a trip to Canada, generating $160 million in revenues.
  • CTC's media and public relations activity around the Games resulted in global coverage for travel to Canada and roughly $1 billion in "advertising value equivalency" in 2010. 
  • These figures come from an interim report, Tourism steps up to the podium, prepared by the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC). This interim accounting examines the early results from the Government of Canada's investment in a $26-million tourism-focused strategy to leverage the Games.

"As host of the 2010 Vancouver Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, Canada seized the opportunity to showcase the spirit and hospitality of its people and the natural wonder of our attractions to the world," said the Honourable Rob Moore, Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism). "Our tourism industry is poised to build on the successful collaboration of public and private partners as we focus on drawing many more visitors to Canada." 

As part of its tourism strategy, Canada became the first hosting country to successfully integrate new, high-definition footage of tourism experiences into the coverage of the Games by international broadcasters. Audiences around the globe followed the Games, and also got a taste of the Canadian adventures that await them here in all regions of the country.

"From the outset, we knew that our job was to market Canada—to use the Games platform to advance Canada's tourism brand," said Michele McKenzie, CTC president and CEO. "Through innovative campaigns, bold strategy and judicious investments, we are competing to keep Canada front of mind as a premier tourism destination in 2011 and beyond, ensuring that international travellers can find - and experience - the Canada they saw on their screens during the Games."

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