Independence celebrations drive Ottawa tourism figures upward

Independence celebrations drive Ottawa tourism figures upward

In 2017, the city of Ottawa was home to a year-long series of special events as it played host to the official celebrations marking 150 years of Canadian Confederation.

Now Ottawa Tourism has further reason to celebrate, with official figures showing that 11 million visitors came to the capital during the period, representing a year-on-year increase of 8.8 per cent.

There was an 8.7 per cent increase in the number of domestic visits to Ottawa, a 7.8 per cent increase in the number of travellers from the United States and a 10.9 per cent increase in the number of overseas holidaymakers.

It has also been revealed that there was a 10.3 per cent increase in visitor spending, topping CAD$2.3 billion.

Michael Crockatt, Ottawa Tourism president, said: “These numbers confirm the incredible growth our tourism industry has seen as part of the year-long celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary.

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“From the astonishing one-off Ottawa 2017 events to the numerous legacy projects, it is clear that the investment in our city paid off: Ottawa was the place to visit and we are excited to continue the momentum through 2018.”

The UK is Canada’s largest overseas source market for international travel with Ottawa growing ever more popular amongst British holidaymakers.

Emma Cashmore, UK director for Ottawa Tourism, added: “Last year was an incredible year for Canada’s capital and we are seeing that enthusiasm moving forward into 2018 and now for 2019 travel.

“We place the UK travel trade at the heart of our growth strategy and by working with our partners we continually seek to position Ottawa as a true year-round city, with four very distinct seasons.

“Through our work with our tour operator partners and through our promotional activities with UK travel media; we have seen increased interest in Ottawa both as a stand-alone city break destination and as part of Eastern Canada multi-centre itineraries.”