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May 19, 2023

TIABC Voice of Tourism Newsletter – May 19, 2023



While spending the better part of two days in a Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC) board meeting onboard the Rocky Mountaineer last week, I learned a lot about my fellow directors from across Canada, partly because I asked a lot of questions.

Throughout our time together, I asked my professional colleagues to share more on their career journeys, home life, travels, what keeps them up at night, hobbies, and other stuff. In some ways I felt like I was recording another episode of TIABC’s Voice of Tourism podcast.

Aside from what I already knew about their jobs and positions, I found out interesting tidbits on various board members that I was previously unaware of. For example, Serge is a heavy metal fan; Nina is a German gourmet chef; Heidi renovates and flips houses; Mandy is a hard-core mountain biker; Michelle recently took up the clarinet; John is a reluctant owner of two sports teams; Matt, the lawyer-entrepreneur is also a small-town mayor; Christina produces maple syrup from her own farm; Philip paints acrylics of landscapes and animals…the list goes on. It’s amazing how much one can learn when curiosity is in your DNA.

As for the business of the board meeting itself, I was also able to enquire about some of the issues that TIAC is dealing with, which again proved to be helpful to inform TIABC’s work in collaboration with the PTTIA (Provincial & Territorial Tourism Industry Association) on similar challenges.

Later this month the PTTIA will meet face-to-face in Quebec City for the first time in over six months to discuss our governance model, policy priorities, partnership opportunities, and best practices, among other things. As part of our meeting, our group will have the opportunity to participate in a private Q&A session with federal Tourism Minister Randy Boissonnault. The aim is to find out what government is doing or planning to support the tourism sector as it continues to rebuild following the pandemic. Some of the questions PTTIA members are poised to ask include:

A. When will the Federal Tourism Growth Strategy be released and what might we expect? Will there be any new dollars attached to strategy initiatives?

B. How will government activate the tourism sector as a 7th Strategy Table as identified prior to the pandemic?

C. Will government consider a longer payback period on federal loan repayment terms to help operators who are struggling to meet their debt servicing obligations?

D. How will government support new product development and much-needed transportation infrastructure improvements?

E. Is government willing to address issues such as the luxury tax on boats, unfair taxation on private campgrounds, and arbitrary fishing closures that are wreaking havoc on sectors of the industry?

F. When will the tax nuance on foreign property owners in Sun Peaks, Apex, and Silver Star be repealed?

G. How can the tourism industry be better positioned to help government meet its biodiversity and climate-action targets? Will government prioritize and partner with the tourism sector on this priority?

H. How can the tourism sector, together with government, be better prepared for the likelihood of another major crisis like the recent pandemic?

There are many others to be sure. If there are specific issues you’d like me to focus on or questions to ask related to government policy, please drop me a line at your earliest convenience.

Last week I told my TIAC board colleagues that my first career was in broadcasting. Some asked if I ever had aspirations to re-enter the broadcast journalism field. The answer was emphatically no although the interviewing skills I learned at journalism school have come in handy for the podcast and other aspects of my job. Don’t be surprised if I asked you a pile of questions the next time we see each other face-to-face.

Walt Judas,

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🎉 We are thrilled to announce that registration is now open for the 2024 BC Tourism Industry Conference. The conference will take place at the Victoria Conference Centre on March 6 & 7, 2024 

Visit our website to view the 2024 registration fees. Early bird rates are available with member and non-member pricing options. Full conference registrations include complete access to all conference sessions, workshops, silent auction, welcome reception, and the awards gala. Register at our early bird rate before January 17, 2024 to save $100 on your registration!

Learn more and register through link in bio! 👆
📸 TIABC CEO Walt Judas with CCCTA director Shannon Landsdowne, CEO Amy Thacker and Williams Lake Mayor Surinderpal Rathor at the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast AGM & Summit.
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🌺 Lest We Forget.