Explore B.C. this year with a “staycation”

By exploring what B.C. has to offer — even close to home — British Columbians can contribute to job creation, the development of local businesses and support the tourism industry in B.C.

In a series of videos, Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Responsible for Labour, is highlighting some of the exceptional tourist experiences British Columbians can find in their own communities and also throughout the province. While the campaign is kicking off in the Christmas season, it will continue throughout next year to highlight the many year-round experiences B.C. has to offer.

“Tourism is an important job creator in our province and by exploring British Columbia we can help to keep tourism dollars and jobs here in B.C.

“I’ll be finding ways to explore my own community with my family and I hope you’ll take the opportunity to celebrate what B.C. has to offer as well,” Bond says.

Minister of State for Tourism and Small Business Naomi Yamamoto will also take part in the campaign with an upcoming video highlighting B.C.’s ski hills as a fun-filled staycation idea and a way to grow the tourism sector.

The latest video showcases the Fairmont Empress Hotel’s Festival of Trees and the Vancouver Christmas Market is also featured as a vibrant venue and a way to support small businesses, with many offering crafts and products for sale at the market.

Tourism is an important economic driver in British Columbia and is one of the eight key sectors in the BC Jobs Plan.  In 2011, the tourism sector generated revenues of $13.4 billion and employed 127,000 British Columbians, almost one in every 15 jobs in B.C.

The industry supports businesses of all sizes — with approximately 18,000 tourism-related  businesses in B.C. British Columbians can join the conversation on Twitter with #staycationbc.

“British Columbia has an abundance of diverse landscapes, exciting attractions and entertaining activities; this winter is the perfect time for a B.C. staycation,” says Marsha Walden, CEO Destination BC

“At Destination BC it’s our job to market British Columbia to the world but we also encourage British Columbians to explore the natural beauty and cultural richness right here in our own backyard.”

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