Tourism Research

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 value of tourism to jobs, business and the economy includes:

  • Tourism employs about 46,400 people
  • Over 19,690 tourism businesses operate in British Columbia.
  • In 2020, the tourism industry generated $7.1 billion in revenue
  • The tourism industry contributed nearly $731 million in provincial taxes in 2020
  • Tourism generated a direct contribution to B.C.’s gross domestic product of $2.4 billion in 2020 (2012 constant dollars), slightly above Forestry & Logging ($1.7 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 download the complete report from 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 Indicators publication 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
    • Europe
    • Asia Pacific

Tourism Research by Activity

Other Canadian Tourism Research Sources