This page includes summary statistics that describe the importance of the tourism sector in British Columbia. It also includes sources for tourism data and statistics.
Value of Tourism
Tourism provides great value to the provincial economy. It is one of the largest employers and one of the largest small business generators.
The 2021 value of tourism to jobs, business and the economy includes:
- Tourism employs about 84,500 people
- Over 16,650 tourism businesses operate in British Columbia.
- In 2021, the tourism industry generated $13.5 billion in revenue
- The tourism industry contributed nearly $1.4 billion in provincial taxes in 2021
- Tourism generated a direct contribution to B.C.’s gross domestic product of $5.0 billion in 2021, above Forestry & Logging ($1.5 billion), Oil and Gas ($4.5 billion) and Agriculture and Fishing ($3.3 billion)
Tourism also has value for communities across British Columbia:
- Most tourism businesses are locally-owned small and medium enterprises that directly contribute to the local community economy.
- Nearly half the tourism businesses (42%) are located outside the Vancouver-Lower Mainland region. Vancouver Island (16%) and Thompson-Okanagan (13%) have the largest number of businesses outside the Lower Mainland.
- While the largest share of jobs (64%) are in the Vancouver-Lower Mainland region, the fastest growth over the last decade has been in the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast (up 50%) and Vancouver, Coast & Mountains (up 19%).
For more information on the Power of Tourism please visit Destination BC's website here.
This section will provide you with links to research on various aspects of the tourism industry. Use it to inform your business plans, tourism development projects and marketing activities.
Destination BC (DBC) Tourism Research and Statistics
DBC is industry's source for tourism data and statistics. Explore DBC's latest statistical reports on:
Tourism Industry Performance
- Industry Performance includes current and historical tourism indicators for Canada, B.C., the six tourism regions of B.C., and some municipal information.
- The Tourism Industry Dashboard comprises key tourism statistics including customs entries data, provincial room revenue, commercial restaurant receipts, provincial and regional occupancy and average daily room rates, visitor centres, regional airports, ferries, and conference centres. The Tourism Indicators data tables are published monthly.
- The International Visitor Arrivals publication summarizes customs entries data to B.C. and Canada from selected markets of origin. The International Visitor Arrivals includes information for both the particular month and the year to-date.
Tourism Research by Region
- Research by Region includes various research publications and reports that can be attributed to one of B.C.'s six regions:
- Vancouver, Coast and Mountains
- Vancouver Island
- Thompson Okanagan
- Northern BC
- Cariboo Chilcotin Coast
- Kootenay Rockies
Tourism Research by Market
- Research by Market includes various research publications and reports relevant to B.C.’s major global markets:
- North America
- Asia Pacific
Tourism Research by Activity
- Research by Activity includes various research reports and publications relevant to various visitor activities in B.C.:
British Columbian Resident Research
- British Columbian Resident Research page includes market monitoring and reports relevant to BC residents’ perspectives on COVID-19 and the tourism industry.
Other Canadian Tourism Research Sources
- BC Stats tourism industry statistics
- Destination Canada industry trends and outlooks
- Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council labour market information
- Statistics Canada a variety of travel and tourism statistics
- Go2HR tourism and hospitality employment tracker
- Destination BC COVID-19 research insights