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The global competition for visitors is fierce.  To stay competitive and realize our fair share of the global tourism economy, we must continually develop our sector’s offering to visitors and Albertans alike.  Bolstering supply for the long-term ensures Alberta has the desirable travel experiences that meet the ever-changing needs of visitors.

With 60 per cent of visitation and 75 per cent of expenditures currently occurring in mature tourism destinations, we have an opportunity to develop and enhance the tourism offerings across other regions of the province.  Seasonal and geographical dispersion will be key to growing our visitor economy as we continue to rebound and rebuild out of the pandemic.

Smaller regions reflect diversity

Traditionally, Travel Alberta’s support to operators, DMOs and other stakeholders throughout the province has been guided by allocating our team across 6 regions – each quite vast in geography.  Long-standing and valid feedback from industry is that this approach didn’t accurately portray the diversity of place and array of experiences within a region or provide an understanding of a region’s holistic development needs.  We agree.

That’s why we’ve changed our boundary mapping from 6 regions to 13 regions. To get closer to industry and collaborate better with stakeholders, operators, and communities.

Alberta Regional Profiles Map
* In July 2022, Travel Alberta changed its boundary mapping from 6 macro regions to 13 micro regions to portray the diversity of place and array of experiences in regions more accurately.

Driving development growth and prosperity, together

Destination development success is a long-term initiative that requires a collaborative approach in designing and implementing solutions in partnership with communities, operators, and many stakeholders. Having smaller geographical regions will not only improve our understanding of each region’s physical, cultural, and economic diversity, but it will also enable us to have a far more detailed understanding of the development and investment needs of each region.

Furthermore, regions that are smaller in geographic scope will allow us to have more boots on the ground more often.

Each of the 13 regions has an assigned Manager, Destination Development. One single point of contact at Travel Alberta that will allow us to serve you better at a regional level in developing strategies that reflect the interdependencies of investment and development.

Effective July 1 you can reach out to your region’s Destination Manager for support with:

Planning

Developing and implementing regional destination development plans.

Experiences

Collaborating with operators and DMOs to design and build more compelling guest experiences.

Investments

Identifying and assisting in exploring and applying for investment opportunities/grants.

Forecasting

Small-to-medium size investment assessments and business forecasts.

Coaching

Business growth coaching to address key operational and marketing challenges.

Networking

Introductions to mentors and partners in the industry to assist operators with firsthand experience addressing common challenges in growing their revenues.

Destination Development Managers

Contact Portrait

Christopher Smith

Manager, Destination Development

Wildlands & Northern Rockies

780-784-0073

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James Leppan

Manager, Destination Development

Wood Buffalo & Edmonton

780-920-4573

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Chris Down

Manager, Destination Development

Lakelands

780-700-2380

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Lisa Lima

Manager, Destination Development

West Country & Central Prairies

403-803-8956

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Andi Dzilums

Manager, Destination Development

Canadian Badlands & Historic Plains

403-648-1091

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Cameron Spence

Manager, Destination Development

Foothills & Canadian Rockies

403-612-8397

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Yvonne Chau

Manager, Destination Development

Southern Rockies & Calgary

403-870-3307

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