Destination BC says they want to make sure that tourism operators outside of fire impacted zones do not suffer as well.
“Obviously we’re seeing cancellations in the emergency areas, but there are also busineses that have been impacted because of access issues like highway closures, and then there are those that have been affected because of misinformation leading people to believe that an area is under fire or that there are air quality issues,” says vice president of global marketing, Maya Lange.
“Only 10% of the Cariboo-Chilcotin Coast area is in a wildfire situation that still means there is a vast area that’s still available to travel.”
Lange says although Vancouver Island is seeing an uptake in tourism, it has not offset the volume of cancellations for operators directly impacted or those in the surrounding areas including the Thompson-Okanagan and Kootenay-Rockies. Majority of the cancellations are by British Columbians and by Albertans.
Destination BC according to Lange will be increasing their annual Explore BC marketing program with print, TV, billboards, and social media to communicate that the province is open to explore and where to get accurate information.
She says from a recovery perspective, they will ensure that impacted areas receive additional marketing support once it is safe to visit and capacity has been established.
“We are extremely proud of the business owners in the affected areas.”
“During these trying times, they are rising above and beyond providing outstanding levels of service and noble acts from hosting stranded visitors on extended vacations to housing and feeding the work crews at all hours of the day.”