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Report indicates tourism growth for B.C. this year

The Conference Board of Canada has released its annual report on tourism, and B.C. is expected to attract more visitors in 2016.

The report is projecting an increase in overnight visits to Canada from the U.S. and overseas as well as domestic visits within Canada. Vancouver has been singled out as a destination that will see the highest increase of overnight visits as it is expected to increase by 4.1 per cent in 2016.

Pleasure travel is expected to boost tourism in the city with the opening of the Trump International Hotel and the Wold Rugby Sevens Tournament.

“A favourable exchange rate coupled with low gas prices will make Canada an attractive destination for both Canadian and international travellers in 2016,” said Greg Hermus, associate director for the Conference Board of Canada’s Canadian Tourism Research Institute.

Tourism is also expected to increase in Halifax, Montreal and Toronto, according to the report. Alberta cities such as Edmonton and Calgary will see a slight increase in tourism in 2016, but economic woes are expected to hamper tourism. Edmonton will see the lowest growth at 0.8 per cent.

Winnipeg and Ottawa will also see an increase in tourism in 2016; the report indicates solid economic prospects will increase consumer confidence.

The report offers an in-depth analysis and forecast for tourism activity in Canada and in nine major metropolitan areas.

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