Vancouver—From May 27 to June 2, businesses, associations, and tourism organizations across British Columbia will celebrate Tourism Week.
BC’s tourism industry is a powerful force: approximately 20.6 million overnight visitors vacation in British Columbia each year, contributing $17 billion in revenue annually to the provincial economy. Tourism touches every part of the province and has become one of BC’s leading business sectors.
This week is an important time to recognize not only the economic benefits this industry brings to British Columbia, but also the cultural and social contributions tourism delivers. 
Tourism contributes more to our GDP than any primary resource industry. In 2016, tourism contributed more to GDP ($7.9B) than any other primary resource industry (mining: $4.1B, forestry & logging $2.0B, and agriculture & fish $1.5B), with the exception of the oil & gas extraction industry ($8.2B).
Tourism in BC is growing. In 2016, the BC tourism industry generated $17 billion in revenue, a 7.9% increase over 2015, and a 39.3% increase from 2006. The industry’s contribution in GDP to the provincial economy grew 5.6% over 2015 and grew 30.3% since 2006. Looking ahead, 2018 is poised to be a record-year for the BC tourism industry as well.
Tourism offers exciting and diverse careers. Ranging from first jobs to highly-skilled technical, managerial and professional roles, the tourism industry creates diverse careers: international sales people, highly-trained outdoor guides, helicopter pilots, wellness experts, sommeliers, hotel managers, fishing guides, bus drivers, ski instructors, event organizers, and so many more. In 2016, 133,100 people were employed in BC tourism-related businesses, a 3.6% increase from 2015. This means that tourism provides a job for roughly 1 out of every 16 people employed in the province. BC is home to over 19,000 tourism businesses across the province, both rural and urban, of every size and make-up. These businesses, many of them small, support BC’s economy and provide a wide range of interesting jobs.
Tourism improves the quality of life for all British Columbians. Think about the things we enjoy that would not be as viable without the tourism engine: Museums and galleries, festivals and sport event, air/highway and coastal transportation, dining and wine touring, parks and recreational facilities. These activities bring incredible benefits not only for visitors, but also social, cultural and economic benefits for BC residents.
Tourism creates connections. Tourism enriches our lives and refreshes our spirits as we get away from the everyday. We invite all British Columbians to welcome visitors into their communities, and take in all the province has to offer.

Tourism Week Infographics and Activities:
The Power of Tourism—BC Tourism Industry Testimonials:
Kumsheen River Rafting
Merridale Cidery and Distillery
About Destination BC:
Destination BC is an industry-led Crown corporation that works collaboratively with tourism stakeholders across the province to coordinate marketing at the international, provincial, regional and local levels. For more information about Destination BC’s programs and services, please visit:
For additional information, please contact:
Destination BC Media Relations