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Travel between Canada and other countries, June 2018

Released: 2018-09-10

Trips by US travellers to Canada increase in June

US residents made 2.1 million trips to Canada in June, up 3.5% from May. After adjusting for normal seasonal variations, this is the second-highest monthly total this year, following March, for US travel to Canada.

US residents made 378,000 overnight trips to Canada by plane in June, up 5.4% from May. The largest gain was recorded by British Columbia, an increase of 16.2% over May, following two months of decline.

US residents made a total of 1.4 million car trips to Canada in June. This was an increase of 3.5% over May. Car trips accounted for almost 7 in 10 visits to Canada by US residents in June.

The number of same-day car trips to Canada rose 4.6% to 693,000 in June, while overnight car trips increased 2.3% to 702,000.

Ontario was the most popular province of entry into Canada during June, with 826,000 car trips from the United States. It was followed by British Columbia (299,000) and Quebec (138,000).

Travel to Canada from overseas steady

Residents of overseas countries (countries other than the United States) made 562,000 trips to Canada in June. This was little changed (-0.1%) from May.

Travel from Europe edged up 0.1% over May, while travel from Asia was down 0.8%. Travel from China saw a decline of 5.7% in June, as the United Kingdom (321,000) regained the lead in the number of travellers to Canada so far in 2018.

The majority of overseas travellers in June entered Canada through Ontario (41.7%), British Columbia (30.9%) and Quebec (17.9%).

Canadian travel to the United States down

In June 2018, Canadian residents made 3.8 million trips to the United States, down 1.1% from May. This was the third consecutive month of declines in trips by Canadians to the United States.

More than three-quarters of the trips (2.9 million) were made by car. A 2.5% decline in same-day car trips was partially offset by a 0.5% increase in overnight car trips. Even with the overall decrease from May to June, total car travel by Canadians to the United States so far this year is 11.2% higher than at the same point last year.

Residents of British Columbia took 811,000 car trips to the United States, down 6.5% from May, and a second consecutive month of decline in car trips to the United States. June also marked the start of a significant wildfire season in British Columbia.

Overnight plane trips by Canadian residents to the United States were up 0.3% from May, to 779,000.

Canadian travel to overseas countries relatively stable

Canadian residents made 1.0 million trips to overseas destinations (countries other than the United States) in June. This was up 0.7% from the previous month.

  Note to readers

Monthly data are seasonally adjusted. For information on seasonal adjustment, see Seasonally adjusted data – Frequently asked questions. Year-to-date figures are based on unadjusted data.

Seasonally adjusted data from March to June 2018 have been revised. No revisions were made to non-seasonally adjusted data. Corrections were made to the previous month (May).

Users are advised to exercise caution when a) making comparisons with 2017 data that include international travellers to Canada by air for the months of March to December, and b) analyzing 2018 data on Canadian residents returning from the United States or overseas by air. Further explanation is provided below.

Data for Statistics Canada's Frontier Counts program are produced using administrative data received from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) on all international travellers who have been cleared for entry or re-entry into Canada. This includes residents of Canada, the United States and overseas entering Canada from abroad.

In 2017, the CBSA began introducing the electronic Primary Inspection Kiosk (PIK) system at airports in Canada. The PIK system replaces the E311 Declaration Cards that are completed by international travellers to Canada. As of the end of June 2018, the PIK system was deployed at the following airports: Macdonald–Cartier, Ottawa (March 2017); Vancouver International Airport (April 2017); Toronto International Airport T3 (June 2017); Edmonton International Airport (September 2017); Stanfield International Airport, Halifax (October 2017); Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport, Montréal (November 2017); Jean Lesage Airport, Québec (December 2017); Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (May 2018), and Richardson International Airport, Winnipeg (June 2018).

Initially, while awaiting receipt of PIK data, Statistics Canada prepared preliminary estimates for airports at which the PIK system has been deployed.

Frontier Counts data since January 2018 incorporates PIK data from the airports where the system has been implemented. The preliminary estimates of 2017 traveller counts for PIK airports will be revised at a later date.

Until these preliminary estimates for March to December 2017 are revised, users are advised to exercise caution when making comparisons with 2017 data for these months that include international travellers to Canada by air.

Data users are also cautioned that the switch from E311 cards to PIK has impacted the historical comparability of some data series. Most notably, there has been an increased tendency of Canadian travellers returning from overseas trips via the United States to report that they are returning from the United States and not overseas via the United States. In the Frontier Counts, this has led to increases in the numbers of Canadian residents returning from the United States by air, and decreases in the numbers of Canadian residents returning from countries other than the United States by air via the United States (as well as more aggregated series to which these data contribute).

The numbers of travellers to and from Canada by car and other modes of transportation are not affected by revisions in PIK data.

Overseas countries refer to countries other than the United States.

A Canadian resident traveller is a Canadian resident who has travelled outside Canada for a period of less than 12 months.

A non-resident traveller is a resident of a country other than Canada who is travelling to Canada for a period of less than 12 months.

An overnight traveller or a tourist is a traveller whose trip includes one or more night's stay.


The June 2018 issue of International Travel, Advance Information, Vol 34, no. 6 (Catalogue number66-001-P) is now available.

For more information regarding the impacts on Statistics Canada travel and tourism data resulting from the replacement of E311 cards with PIK, please contact

Contact information

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; or Media Relations (613-951-4636;

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