Earlier this month, the federal government took another step in the right direction towards helping the tourism industry recover with the elimination of the COVID-19 vaccine mandates for domestic travel on planes and trains, as well as outbound international travel. The latest of the COVID-19 mandates to be removed had been in effect since Oct. 30, 2021 – scrapping them will not only alleviate the situation at our airports, but will align our processes with other countries, as well. While this latest round of mandate-removals is undoubtedly good news for the industry, it does little to resolve restrictions for inbound travellers and for our cruising sector. We continue to urge the government to eliminate barriers to travel in these important areas, and to do so quickly so as not to lose momentum on the tourism recovery at this critical time of reopening.
As the industry rebuilds, TIAC is hard at work advocating for the full removal of all pandemic-related border restrictions. That includes the elimination of the mandatory use of the ArriveCAN app. On June 15, I appeared before the House of Commons Standing Committee on International Trade to let parliamentarians know about the impact that the app was having on our industry (watch it here by selecting June 15 and scrolling to 18:10:10). With pre-departure and arrival testing now eliminated in many countries around the world, it no longer makes sense to force travellers to use ArriveCAN when entering Canada. For the industry first hit, hardest hit and last to recover, we continue to push for nothing less than a full return to normal at our borders.
Also on the advocacy front, we’ve been working diligently to gather insights from you – our valued industry – in drafting our recommendations for the government’s new Federal Tourism Growth Strategy. We thank all who responded to our survey – we appreciate your feedback, it goes a long way to ensuring that our submission accurately reflects the industry's priorities for immediate investment, long-term growth, and greater economic stability. Missed the deadline to provide us with feedback? You’ve got time to make your own submission here (by July 20, 2022).
And remember, we’re here to support you: if your own advocacy efforts take you to Ottawa, please reach out and let us know. Let’s join forces – send an email to TIAC’s Madison Simmons, Director, Government Affairs, at: firstname.lastname@example.org. We hope to see you soon here, in the nation’s capital.
Amid all the hard work this summer, I hope you find at least some time to unwind…and enjoy a little R & R, yourself!
President & CEO
Tourism Industry Association of Canada