(Northern Vancouver Island Tourism/Steven Fines)

(Northern Vancouver Island Tourism/Steven Fines)

B.C. tourism industry welcomes relief funding, but some businesses still need reprieve

Until travel restrictions lift, the tourism industry will still face continued struggle, industry says

  • Dec. 24, 2020 6:30 p.m.

By Charlie Carey

Tourism industry leaders are welcoming new funding from the B.C. government set to help ailing businesses, but says that more support is needed until non-essential travel restrictions are lifted.

On Tuesday (Dec. 22), the province announced $105 million in funding for the hard-hit tourism sector. The funding is one of the key recommendations made by the provincial tourism task force, which is made up of industry leaders and was created to help B.C.’s tourism sector recover from the economic impacts of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

READ MORE: B.C. diverts more COVID-19 small business relief to tourism

Tourism Minister Melanie Mark said Tuesday that the funds will “provide critical support to tourism operators through the winter months, particularly as travel restrictions remain in place.”

Tourism Industry Association of British Columbia board chair Vivek Sharma said the latest measures are only a start.

“On behalf of our industry, TIABC will continue to work with government to ensure they understand the needs of all operators and the workforce going forward, as well as address the gaps for businesses that have yet to qualify for any assistance,” Sharma said.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, hotels, transport providers and attractions have been just some of the businesses affected by lower visitor rates and pandemic response policies. Many of these businesses have had to lay off staff as a result.

“It is well recognized that one of the fastest ways to get more employees back to work is to ensure the health of larger tourism businesses, most of whom also directly and indirectly support many other sectors of the economy,” the association said.

Health officials have restricted non-essential travel within the province until at least Jan. 8. Meanwhile, the U.S.-Canada border has been closed to non-essential travel for much of this year, with no sign of being lifted in the near future.

In partnership with Tourism BC, the government also announced the inclusion of an Indigenous relief funding grant. This $5-million grant will look to sustain Indigenous tourism operators through the winter.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Tourism

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Prince George Cougars triumph over the Langley-based Vancouver Giants Monday night, by the score of 4-1. That follows a similar defeat on Saturday by the same team. (Cougar’s Allen Douglas/Special to Black Press Media)
Vancouver Giants fall in 4-1 loss to Prince George

WHL hockey team goes up against Victoria in Kamloops on Thursday

COVID-19 virus (file photo).
COVID cases recorded at 5 Langley schools

14 schools remain on Fraser Health exposure list

Trinity Western University’s Student Association organized a celebration parade for graduating students Saturday, April 10, 2021. (Trinity Western University/Special to the Langley Advance Times)
University student association hosts grad parade at Langley campus

Students honoured with special Saturday event

Seven-year-old Aaliyah Rosa was found dead in an apartment in Langley in July, 2018. (Langley Advance Times files)
Judge to rule on final witness in Langley child murder trial

The trial of KerryAnn Lewis has lasted far longer than expected

Basmodi protest on Saturday, April 10 at Aldergrove Community Secondary School. (Special to The Star)
‘Basmodi Wave’ protesters in support of Indian farmers demonstrate at Aldergrove school

200 pairs of shoes were on display, one for every protester killed in India

Restaurant patrons enjoy the weather on a patio in Vancouver, B.C., Monday, April 5, 2021. The province has restricted indoor dining at all restaurants in B.C. due to a spike in COVID-19 numbers. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 indoor dining, drinking ban extending into May

Restaurant association says patio rules to be clarified

In a 2019 photograph, Yin Yin Din held a picture of her brother Kyaw Naing Din, 54, and her late father Hla Din who passed away in 2014, during a trip to Victoria. (The News files)
Family of B.C. man killed by cop appeals to Attorney General for help

The Din family want B.C. Attorney General David Eby to forward their case to Crown

B.C. Premier John Horgan speaks at the B.C. legislature. (B.C. government)
Tougher COVID-19 restrictions in B.C., including travel, still ‘on the table’: Horgan

John Horgan says travel restrictions will be discussed Wednesday by the provincial cabinet

Protesters occupied a road leading to Fairy Creek Watershed near Port Renfrew. (Submitted photo)
B.C. First Nation says logging activist interference not welcome at Fairy Creek

Vancouver Island’s Pacheedaht concerned about increasing polarization over forestry activities

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Flow Academy is not accepting membership applications from anybody who has received a dose of the vaccine, according to a password-protected membership application form. (Submitted image)
B.C. martial arts gym refusing patrons who have been vaccinated, wear masks

Interior Health has already issued a ticket to Flow Academy for non-compliance with public health orders

Of 46 arrests made between March 16 and 19 at Metrotown mall in Burnaby, 27 suspected shoplifters are now facing charges. (Twitter/Burnaby RCMP)
RCMP arrest 46 people in 4 days during Metrotown shoplifting crackdown

$4,800 in stolen merchandise was recovered and returned to businesses inside of the mall

Kao Macaulay has been charged in relation to a home break-in on March 30 in Abbotsford in which five kittens were stolen. (Facebook photo)
‘Prolific offender’ charged with theft of 5 newborn kittens in Abbotsford

Kao Macaulay, 23, is accused of breaking into home on March 30

Sheila Malcolmson, B.C.’s minister of mental health and addictions (Screen shot)
Minister of mental health tells Surrey audience COVID-19 ‘has made everything worse’

More than 23,000 people in B.C. are receiving medication to treat opioid addiction

Most Read