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Winnipeg sees increase in person-visits and direct expenditures from tourism

Winnipeg sees increase in person-visits and direct expenditures from tourism

The latest travel data based on Statistics Canada’s travel consumer surveys for 2010 indicates strong overall growth in both direct visitor expenditures and person visits to Winnipeg.

These statistics have been compiled into the Tourism Winnipeg 2010 Visitor Profile. This annual publication is available for download at Statistics have been measured on a year over year comparison.

“Winnipeg saw direct visitor expenditures increase five per cent, generating an estimated $506 million from transportation, food and beverage, accommodation, recreation, entertainment and retail-related expenses,” says Marina R. James, president and CEO of Economic Development Winnipeg Inc. “This is significant as tourism is a major industry sector in Winnipeg, supporting approximately 44,000 related jobs.”

“Statistics show 2.8 million people visited Winnipeg on day and overnight trips. This is a solid increase of 7 per cent,” says Chantal Sturk-Nadeau, senior vice president of Tourism Winnipeg. “Of those visitors, there were 504,000 overnight visits from out-of-city Manitobans who spent an estimated $114 million. Both overnight visits and expenditures increased 6 per cent, which demonstrates how important our Manitoban visitors are to the economy.”

Of note, visits to friends and family accounted for 42 per cent of all travel to Winnipeg in 2010, which was also the year of the “Manitoba Homecoming” initiative. In a year-over-year comparison, this market segment increased 15 per cent.


Other highlights from the 2010 Visitor Profile include:

• Overall hotel occupancy was 68 per cent, showing growth of 3 per cent YOY. This contributed to Winnipeg’s average revenue per available room (RevPAR), which grew 10 per cent to $78.57—out-performing the national average.
• More than half (51 per cent) of total expenditures were generated by Manitobans living outside of the Winnipeg region. Other Canadians accounted for 33 per cent of expenditures and spending by U.S. and overseas travellers made up the remaining 16 per cent.
• Winnipeg hosted 185 meetings and conventions, attracting 51,000 delegates who spent an estimated $48 million during their stay. The number of meetings and conventions improved 5 per cent, delegate attendance rose 21 per cent and expenditures advanced 22 per cent.
• Expenditures and person-visits from Ontario grew significantly by 38 per cent and related expenditures increased 35 per cent. Approximately half of these visits came from the northwestern region, including Kenora, Dryden, Fort Frances and Thunder Bay.
• There was strong growth from Quebec, where overnight visits to Winnipeg increased 51 per cent and related expenditures grew 34 per cent with the majority coming from the Montreal region.
• Visits from the U.S. increased 3 per cent and spending grew 4 per cent.

Tourism Winnipeg forecasts visitation will grow 4 per cent annually in 2011 and 2012. The opening of Winnipeg’s first IKEA and the Journey to Churchill exhibit at Assiniboine Park Zoo is forecast to increase visitor volume by 6.3 per cent in 2013. In 2014, the grand opening of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights is expected to help person-visits grow by 6.5 per cent and then 8.2 per cent in 2015, with the anticipated completion of the Winnipeg Convention Centre expansion, before returning to a more moderate level of growth in coming years.
The 2010 visitor profile reflects the latest travel data available for Canadian Metropolitan Areas (CMA).