National tourism indicators, fourth quarter 2016
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Fourth quarter 2016
Tourism spending in Canada increased 0.4% in the fourth quarter, following a 2.1% gain in the third quarter. Since the third quarter of 2009, tourism spending has increased every quarter except the third quarter of 2012 when it declined 0.3%.
Both tourism spending by Canadians in Canada and by international visitors increased in the fourth quarter.
Tourism spending by Canadians increase
Tourism spending by Canadians in Canada rose 0.4% in the fourth quarter, following a 1.9% increase in the third quarter.
Higher pre-trip expenditures (+4.8%) largely contributed to the gain. Tourism outlays on non-tourism goods and services (+0.9%) such as groceries also rose.
Spending by international visitors rises
Spending by international visitors to Canada rose 0.4% in the fourth quarter, following a 2.9% increase in the third quarter.
Food and beverage services (+1.2%) were the largest contributors to the gain. Accommodation (+0.4%) and passenger air transport (+0.3%) also contributed to the growth.
Tourism gross domestic product edges up
Tourism gross domestic product (GDP) edged up 0.1% in the fourth quarter, following a 1.7% gain in the preceding quarter. By comparison, national GDP grew 0.5% in the fourth quarter, after a 1.0% increase in the third quarter.
Increased tourism GDP in non-tourism industries (+0.9%) was offset by declines in other tourism industries (-0.9%). Transportation, accommodation and food and beverage services were all relatively flat in the fourth quarter.
Tourism employment edged up 0.1% in the fourth quarter, following a 1.1% gain in the third quarter. Increases in accommodation services (+0.7%) and non-tourism industries (+0.8%) were moderated by declines in travel services (-1.3%), recreation and entertainment (-0.6%) and air transportation (-0.6%).
Tourism spending in Canada grew 4.2% in 2016, following a 2.5% gain in 2015. Expenditures by both Canadians at home and international visitors contributed to the gain.
Spending by international visitors rose 9.7% in 2016, following a 5.4% increase in 2015. This was the largest annual growth since 1998. The marked increase in spending by international visitors was the result of higher outlays on most tourism goods and services, notably passenger air transport (+16.2%), accommodation services (+8.7%) and food and beverage services (+10.6%). Tourism spending on non-tourism goods and services (+5.2%) also increased.
Travel to Canada was possibly boosted by a depreciating Canadian dollar in 2016. Overnight travel by air from abroad rose 16.4%. Same-day and overnight car travel from the United States also increased.
Spending by Canadians at home rose 2.8%, following a 1.7% gain in 2015. Growth was largely attributable to passenger air transport (+8.9%). Increased outlays on vehicle fuel (+3.8%) and non-tourism goods and services (+1.6%) also contributed to the advance.
Tourism GDP rose 3.7% in 2016, the highest level of growth since 2004. Transportation (+7.5%), accommodation (+3.1%), and food and beverage services (+3.1%) contributed to the gain.
Tourism jobs rose 1.9%, following a 1.2% gain in 2015. Food and beverage services (+3.2%), air transportation (+1.7%) and accommodation (+0.9%) industries all contributed to the increase.
Note to readers
Growth rates for tourism spending and gross domestic product are expressed in real terms (that is, adjusted for price changes), at 2007 constant prices, as well as adjusted for seasonal variations, unless otherwise indicated. Employment data are also seasonally adjusted. For information on seasonal adjustment, see Seasonally adjusted data – Frequently asked questions.
Associated percentage changes are presented at quarterly rates unless otherwise noted.
With the fourth quarter 2016 release of the National tourism indicators, all data from the first quarter of 1986 to the third quarter of 2016 have been revised and benchmarked to the Canadian Tourism Satellite Account, 2012 (). 13-604-M
More information on the revision will be published in an article in the Latest Developments in the Canadian Economic Accounts in September 2017.
The national tourism indicators are funded by Destination Canada.
The article "Canadian Tourism Satellite Account, 2012," which is part of Income and Expenditure Accounts Technical Series (13-604-M), is now available.
The System of Macroeconomic Accounts module features an up-to-date portrait of national and provincial economies and their structure.
The Methodological Guide: Canadian System of Macroeconomic Accounts (13-607-X) is available.
The User Guide: Canadian System of Macroeconomic Accounts (13-606-G) is also available. This publication will be updated to maintain its relevance.
For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; STATCAN.infostats-infostats.STATCAN@canada.ca) or Media Relations (613-951-4636; STATCAN.mediahotline-ligneinfomedias.STATCAN@canada.ca).
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