If there’s any bright side to the low value for the loonie, it might be shining on the Saskatchewan tourism industry.
Jeremy Harrison is the minister responsible for Tourism Saskatchewan. He says it’s hard to tell exactly how many more Americans are travelling here by air, but there is a noticeable increase at land borer crossings.
“In terms of road borders and entries by land, we’ve seen an eight per cent in Canada overall, five per cent more U.S. citizens have entered Saskatchewan directly during that same period of time,” Harrison said. “So we’ve seen more Americans coming into Saskatchewan and I think we could attribute that rightly to the differential in the dollar.”
He points out that a lot of American tourists are attracted to Saskatchewan as a destination spot for hunting and fishing. He says the government is working with the outfitting industry to figure out ways to improve marketing opportunities for hunting and fishing to people in the U.S.
With the continuing decline of the Canadian dollar, Harrison does expect to see a greater increase in cross-border tourism in the coming months.
He says there has also been a noticeable decline in the number of Canadians who are traveling to the U.S. for vacation.
“About 20 per cent fewer that we’ve seen so far this year from October 2015 versus the year before, so it has been substantial,” Harrison said.
He says that opens up the market for opportunities to attract more Canadian tourists to vacation in Saskatchewan.