Houston, PCs will be a trusted partner to the tourism industry

Tourism operators across the province who struggled without meaningful government support for much of the pandemic will have a more collaborative partner in a Tim Houston PC government.

To ensure the tourism industry thrives, a PC government will increase Tourism Nova Scotia’s marketing budget by $2 million. Houston has also pledged to partner with local operators and focus on homegrown tourism which can be leveraged to other markets.

“Nova Scotia has so much to showcase,” says Houston. “We live in the most beautiful place in the world, and we should help tourism operators celebrate and sell that.”

A PC government will also develop a province-wide tourism identity program that markets our existing assets, including but not limited to:

  • Our national parks, full of rich scenery and landscape
  • Winter sports, including skiing, snowshoeing and snowmobiling trails
  • Summer sports like our world-class golf courses
  • Food and culture including Annapolis Valley wines and Celtic Colours in Cape Breton

The fund will be allocated based on a formula that would take into account population, need and amenities.

For most of the pandemic, small tourism operators suffered financially from closed borders and shutdowns. Under a PC government, we will ensure they aren’t ignored. According to the Tourism Industry Association of Nova Scotia, $1.7 billion in revenue was lost last year and a dollar invested in tourism yields a $3.2 dollar return into the communities.

“Our small and medium tourism operators in every region of this province know how to sell themselves better than anyone working in an office tower in Halifax ever will,” says Houston. “We want to work with all tourism operators and make sure their voices are heard.”

The Liberals were criticized for helping the big operators while small operators had to go through the pandemic on their own. It was described by some in the sector as ‘asinine.’

“We are committed to a stronger industry voice from rural operators,” says Houston. “This also means supporting communities and municipalities in their efforts to be responsive to the needs of the market.”