Author: Tourism HR Canada

Over the next several months, Tourism HR Canada will be working with Don Bosco Technical Institute (DBTI) to explore a long-term business relationship that will see DBTI deliver a series of competency-based training programs and internationally recognized credentials/certifications in India. Tourism HR Canada seeks to help build capacity and ensure quality program delivery, with the aim of DBTI graduates earning a credential commensurate with Canadian standards.

Established in 1971, Don Bosco Technical Institute is a placement-driven skill training institute with over 125 locations across India. Don Bosco is dedicated to upskilling disadvantaged youth, preparing them for meaningful employment and self-realization. DBTI intends to expand on its highly respected and well-established programs by introducing tourism courses and credentials for high-demand employment options. The tourism program is envisioned to prepare youth for employment in tourism in entry-level positions, as well as enable individuals to expand their job and career prospects through advanced occupational streams, and potentially international mobility.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is a commitment by both parties to:

  1. Develop a business and feasibility plan aimed at the implementation of a series of tourism courses and credentials for various occupations and functions in all areas of tourism.
  2. Identify a program implementation strategy that will support immediate and short-term goals, as well as long-term interests.
  3. Develop a proposal and work plan to train tourism trainers in India, where qualified Canadian trainers will work with a group of Indian trainers identified by DBTI.
  4. Establish DBTI as an accredited distribution agent for Emerit online programs for the Indian market.

The parties anticipate that the business and feasibility plan will lead to an agreement to establish a formal business partnership. Beyond the MOU, the plan envisions the following activities:

  • Delivery of teacher training in February/March 2019, prior to the April start of India’s academic year
  • Pilot delivery of one to four programs in one or two Don Bosco campuses in the first year, with the intent to scale up with additional programs and campuses thereafter
  • Joint development work that will result in adapted and enhanced programs with input from Indian stakeholders, to ensure the programs reflect Indian work and cultural contexts
  • Seeking funding and possible sponsorship as defined by the business plan, where needed

Further details on this MOU will be explored in an upcoming feature—stay informed by subscribing to Tourism HR Insider and get the latest delivered directly to your inbox.

Tourism HR Canada congratulates the latest post-secondary program to achieve its SMART + accreditation status. Confederation College’s Tourism – Travel and Eco-Adventure program demonstrated its tourism-related programming exceeds industry standards as envisioned in the SMART accreditation program.

“This recognition is an impressive accomplishment, and we commend Confederation College for its commitment to creating programming that reflects current industry needs and provides the type of graduate that will be integral to growing Canada’s tourism sector,” stated Tourism HR Canada President and CEO Philip Mondor.

Confederation’s two-year diploma program provides a comprehensive introduction to the tourism industry through hands-on and experiential learning. Courses cover topics ranging from tourism marketing and business fundamentals to sustainability and ecotourism. Students can choose French or Spanish language options and a field placement or study abroad opportunity. A mix of delivery methods keeps learning fresh—students participate in traditional lectures in person or online, as well as hands-on work-related projects, field placements, familiarization trips, guest speakers, and field trips.

“We have worked very hard to achieve this accreditation, which reinforces that our program is of premium quality,” said Program Coordinator Giannina Veltri. “Exceeding the industry standards has made our program measurable, adaptable, and responsive to today’s tourism industry demands. This is evidence that our students are receiving and have received the best possible experience during the two years of their Tourism – Travel & Eco-Adventure program. Faculty are committed to providing educational opportunities to a diverse population, training students for a wide range of careers in the tourism field.”

The program prioritizes inclusivity, offering authentic Indigenous activities, Indigenous learning outcomes, support for students with learning challenges, and services for international students.

In-depth industry engagement ensures the program reflects current, real-world practices and technologies. Students can access mentoring and networking opportunities through Baxter Media’s Baxter Student Ambassador Program. They can also earn numerous industry certifications and licenses to round out their résumés.

“I’m very proud of this fantastic accomplishment,” stated Richard Gemill, Dean, School of Business, Hospitality and Media Arts. “The hours that [faculty members] Matthew Villella and Giannina Veltri spent throughout the accreditation process were tremendous, but pale with respect to the amount of time they spend each and every day with their students. The certifications, the excursions, the labs are all part of the program, but it is the time they spend outside of the classroom that really impacts students. Connecting with our community and industry partners on job prospects and creating partnerships with industry to help service remote communities are just two examples of the amazing work they have accomplished over the last couple of years. Achieving Tourism HR Canada’s SMART + accreditation is a testament to the dedication of Giannina and Matt to our students, our program and our community.”

The SMART Accreditation Program offers two levels of accreditation: SMART Program status for programs that meet a basic standard and a SMART + Premium Program status for programs exceeding the basic standard. The SMART Accreditation Program provides an opportunity for post-secondary public or private institutions and corporate training providers to demonstrate that their programming meets or exceeds industry standards, and offers benchmarks that tourism educators can use to assist them in continually improving their programs.

Learn more about SMART Accreditation

(seasonally unadjusted)

In August 2018, the unemployment rate1 in the tourism sector was at 5.1%, which is 0.3% higher than the rate reported in August 2017, and higher than the previous month (July 2018), when the unemployment rate stood at 4.2%.

At 5.1%, tourism’s unemployment rate was well below Canada’s seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate of 6.6%.

With the exception of Food & Beverage Services and Travel Services, all tourism industry groups reported lower unemployment rates than the same month last year (Table 1).

On a provincial basis, tourism unemployment rates ranged from 0% in Prince Edward Island to 6.3% in Saskatchewan.

The seasonally unadjusted unemployment rates for tourism in each province were all below the rates reported for the provincial economy (Figure 1).

Tourism employment comprised 12% of the total Canadian labour force for the month of August.

Table 1 – Employment Rate by Tourism Industry Group – August 2017/2018
Tourism Industry Group2 Unemployment Rate –
August 2017
Unemployment Rate –
August 2018
Tourism 4.8% 5.1%
Accommodations 3.2% 3.1%
Food and Beverage 5.0% 5.8%
Recreation and Entertainment 4.9% 4.1%
Transportation 5.9% 5.9%
Travel Services 0.0% 3.1%

Figure 1 – Tourism Sector vs. Total Labour Force Unemployment Rates by Province (Seasonally Unadjusted)

1 To determine unemployment rates, industrial (NAICS) classifications are based on the most recent job held within the past year, and are self-identified by the respondent. Unemployed persons are those who, during the reference period, were available for work but were on temporary layoff, were without work, or were to start a new job within four weeks.

2 As defined by the Canadian Tourism Satellite Account. The NAICS industries included in the tourism sector are those that would cease to exist or operate at a significantly reduced level of activity as a direct result of an absence of tourism. Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey, customized tabulations. Based on data for the week ending August 18, 2018.


Join Canada’s foremost travel and tourism researchers, including Tourism HR Canada’s own Vice-President of Labour Market Intelligence, this fall in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Registration is still open for the Travel and Tourism Research Association (TTRA) Canada’s conference, Propelling Smarter, Bolder Tourism, September 26 to 28.

Delegates will explore how research is and can be effectively employed to advance Canada’s shared social, economic, environmental, and cultural goals. It is not ‘more’ tourism that Canada needs, it’s ‘better’, more energetic, astute, intelligent tourism.

The conference features three sessions discussing major trends in Canada’s tourism sector:

  • Ulrike Gretzel of the University of Southern California will discuss smart tourism. Destinations around the world are eager to embrace smart tourism to gain competitive advantages, but only a few have successfully adopted it as a development approach and management mindset. Looking at these best practice examples, this talk will explore the critical dimensions and typical roadblocks of smart tourism development.
  • Adam Keuland Dr. Brian Eisenhauer, both of Plymouth State University, will discuss a topic that will have major ramifications in Canada just a few short weeks after the conference. Their work on cannabis tourism emerged in response to the legalization of recreational cannabis sales in several US states beginning in 2014. As a novel market in cannabis tourism has begun to blossom, their research seeks to document and discern the practical and legal/political implications of welcoming visitors to these new legalized worlds of cannabis consumption. Working with cannabis tourism operators, dispensary owners, and tourists, they examined the differentiation of these new tourism experience products, factors affecting their success, and the outlook for future cannabis tourism. Their keynote address will present this information alongside their ongoing research in Oregon and the New England states of Maine, Massachusetts, and Vermont. Given the forthcoming federal legalization of cannabis in Canada, they will lay out the promises and pitfalls of embracing cannabis tourism throughout the provinces.
  • Jason A. Kingsley of Bow Valley College will explore the basics of LGBTQ travel, from both a Canadian and an international perspective. LGBTQ travel is one of the most lucrative, yet challenging, niche travel markets…but when you understand this market, the opportunities are limitless.

Additionally, a plenary session on the world of data collection will delve into this field`s rapid evolution. Experts from Ottawa Tourism, Telus, Arrivalist, and Google will share their experiences with the realities of collecting and disseminating data in the current regulatory and technology environment. Learn about the impact of privacy protection regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Tourism researchers and their clients are embracing data and know-how to fearlessly chart new directions for established and emerging destinations, and supply impactful, brilliant experiences for our diverse markets. This year’s conference will provide a platform for learning about new approaches, lessons learned and the challenges ahead, as we navigate post-truth, virtually-infused, climate change impacted, emerging environments.

Join us on the East Coast to discuss and share smarter, bolder travel and tourism research.

Another summer tourist season has wrapped up across Canada—one of the most successful in recent memory. A strong global economy coupled with international visitors avoiding the political turmoil in the United States resulted in a boom in both international and domestic tourists exploring Canada’s plethora of sights and activities.

For most tourism employers, the ritual of recruiting staff for peak season is an annual necessity that induces stress, uncertainty, and a grudging acceptance that it is simply the cost of running a business in a seasonal industry.

Once the hiring process has been completed, most employers turn their attention to other crucial aspects of maximizing success over these key revenue-generating months. There is often little thought given to making summer staffing less of a burden the following season—that ship has sailed, and their attention and problem-solving skills are needed elsewhere.

With September’s arrival, we felt it would be timely to suggest some practices to implement now and sustain throughout the year—practices that will put you and your business in a more advantageous position for next spring’s hiring rush. These need not be onerous, but by including the necessity of hiring for the next busy season in ongoing business decisions, you can improve your ability to hire the right people and your chances of having these top performers stay more than a single season. Keeping your best staff members year after year allows you to save on recruitment and training costs and ensures you have a qualified, experienced, and committed staff.

Here are some tips to ensure the return of as many of your seasonal employees as possible, and strategies to hire new ones as necessary:

  1. Simply ask! Toward the end of the summer season, ask employees whether they would like to return the following year. This may seem obvious, but some may not have thought that far ahead, and may appreciate the ability to come back to a familiar job and work environment.
  2. Conduct exit interviews. Find out why some employees are keen to return while others are not. Some will be leaving for legitimate reasons, such as a school work placement or a move after graduation, but others may be seeking a workplace with more benefits or training. Use these results to tweak HR policies. This will not only boost seasonal retention, but make your longer-term employees more committed as well.
  3. Keep in touch. A quick message to say hello, a holiday greeting, or an invitation to a staff party will keep your operation top-of-mind when seasonal employees start thinking about summer plans. Consider creating a social networking group where current and former employees can chat with each other and you. Also encourage seasonal staff to swing by for a meal or visit when they are in town—extending a staff discount on your products or services or treating them to a freebie is a great gesture…and could even encourage new business if they bring along family or friends.
  4. Offer extra incentives to returning employees. Whether it’s a higher wage, a promotion, non-monetary bonuses, or training for a supervisory role, they will feel encouraged to come back. Make sure the incentives build with each year an employee returns.
  5. Be a choice employer. Providing a fun, flexible, and positive workplace will have seasonal staff looking forward to returning the following year. Make such issues as work-life balance, training, teamwork, and communication a priority. You’ll earn a reputation as a place people want to work, resulting not only in repeat seasonal employees but also in other qualified workers hoping to gain a position with you.
  6. Make connections. If your top seasonal employees are not returning for reasons unrelated to the job, ask if they have family members or friends who would be interested in coming on board. If they genuinely enjoyed their time working for you, they will not hesitate to recommend hard-working individuals to take over the role they are leaving.
  7. Expand your focus. If you tend to recruit students, consider alternate labour pools. Retired individuals may be looking for new experiences and extra income; their maturity and varied work history can bring an added dimension to your team. Newcomers to Canada are often looking for that first foot in the door to gain relevant Canadian workplace experience. They may seek seasonal experience regardless of their long-term employment plans, because it can be a good bridge to learn more about Canadian culture, norms, attitudes, and business practices. A growing number of Indigenous youth are looking to enter the workforce and gain experience in tourism—build relationships with the local Indigenous community to connect with them. These alternate labour pools often require employers to look at different recruitment, onboarding, and retention policies—look for tips in upcoming editions of HR Insider.


(seasonally unadjusted)

In July 2018, the unemployment rate1 in the tourism sector was at 4.2%, which is 0.2% lower than the rate reported in July 2017, and lower than the previous month (June 2018), when the unemployment rate stood at 4.5%.

At 4.2%, tourism’s unemployment rate was well below Canada’s seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate of 6.0%.

With the exception of Food & Beverage Services, all tourism industry groups reported lower unemployment rates than the same month last year (Table 1).

On a provincial basis, tourism unemployment rates ranged from 2.4% in Prince Edward Island to 6.5% in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The seasonally unadjusted unemployment rates for tourism in each province were below the rates reported for the provincial economy (Figure 1).

Tourism employment comprised 11.9% of the total Canadian labour force for the month of July.

Table 1 – Employment Rate by Tourism Industry Group – July 2017/2018
Tourism Industry Group2 Unemployment Rate –
July 2017
Unemployment Rate –
July 2018
Tourism 4.4% 4.2%
Accommodations 3.6% 2.8%
Food and Beverage 4.9% 5.1%
Recreation and Entertainment 4.0% 3.7%
Transportation 4.0% 4.0%
Travel Services 6.4% N/A

Figure 1 – Tourism Sector vs. Total Labour Force Unemployment Rates by Province (Seasonally Unadjusted)

1 To determine unemployment rates, industrial (NAICS) classifications are based on the most recent job held within the past year, and are self-identified by the respondent. Unemployed persons are those who, during the reference period, were available for work but were on temporary layoff, were without work, or were to start a new job within four weeks.

2 As defined by the Canadian Tourism Satellite Account. The NAICS industries included in the tourism sector are those that would cease to exist or operate at a significantly reduced level of activity as a direct result of an absence of tourism. Source: Statistics Canada Labour Force Survey, customized tabulations. Based on data for the week ending July 21, 2018.


The Canadian tourism sector continues to face a critical shortage of labour, with projections forecasting worsening conditions if the status quo remains unchanged. If more workers cannot be attracted to the sector, it risks losing its competitive edge as businesses cannot meet demand, service quality diminishes…and tourists go elsewhere. This information will come as no surprise to employers already facing shortages, but it is a scenario that needs to motivate policy makers, career counsellors, and industry advocates.

The dwindling pool of potential workers is only part of the recruitment challenge. As a destination for employment, tourism has many advantages, but it also faces limitations.

Perceptions—mostly misperceptions—of what it is like working in the sector can be damaging to filling vacant positions and attracting people to meet the projected growth.

Survey Says

A Tourism HR Canada survey revealed many favourable perceptions of tourism employment. In general, 62% of respondents would recommend a job in tourism to family or friends, and this number was even higher (69%) among respondents who had worked in the sector.

Further, respondents who had worked in tourism reported gaining many valuable skills, especially those necessary for working with others and for providing exceptional customer service: communication skills, empathy, listening skills, and anticipating customer needs. These “soft skills” are vital to a successful career in any sector.

But the survey also revealed areas of concern, especially related to respondents’ perceptions around turning a tourism job into a career. Besides chefs and some management positions, most jobs in tourism were seen as temporary or placeholder jobs.

Of the 27% of respondents who had worked in tourism, the median duration of their employment in the sector was three years. When asked why they had left, the most frequent responses were “other/better career opportunities” (36%) and “desire for a career change” (31%).

When those who had not worked in tourism were asked why they had never done so, 41% cited other/better career opportunities.

Many people do work in tourism while attending school or training for their desired vocation. The flexibility that some tourism jobs offer has always been part of their appeal to students, artists, entrepreneurs, and others whose lifestyles benefit from increased flexibility at work…but there are also stable, well-paying positions for those who seek a more traditional work schedule and the opportunity to build a successful, rewarding career.

Opportunity Abounds

While tourism offers the short-term or seasonal work some seek, often overlooked are the corresponding full-time supervisory and managerial positions available.

Every business that employs seasonal or part-time staff also needs permanent, full-time employees to manage the day-to-day operations and planning needed to be successful. Many of these mid-level and management employees start on the frontline and work their way up the ranks as they master new skills and learn different facets of the operation. These positions can vary from HR to marketing, sales to corporate trainer, finance to event planning.

Survey participants who had worked in the industry were more likely to indicate that working in tourism helps build the skills needed for opening a business. We know that 7% of those employed in tourism identify as being self-employed, and that 73% of tourism businesses (over 72,000) are small businesses, employing fewer than 20 employees.

These businesses are more likely to promote from within and be progressive in their efforts to retain employees, partly because of their owners’ career experience and partly because they recognize that it costs less time and money to provide the training an employee needs to advance within the organization than to find and train a new hire. Frontline workers are trained in other areas of the organization, move into more challenging and better compensated full-time supervisory and managerial positions, and build a tourism career in the process.

While tourism professionals in occupations with positive perceptions, like chefs, hotel general managers, and business owners, may have had some formal education in their field, many of these individuals started in occupations looked upon less favourably, such as prep cooks, dishwashers, servers, and bartenders. Herein lies the disconnect between perception and reality: without the experience gained in occupations perceived as less desirable, an individual may never have been able to attain the occupation that is positively perceived.

Tourism stakeholders must confront these perceptions of tourism occupations and work to showcase tourism career pathways to the public and to frontline employees. Innovative HR practices, career fairs, partnerships with co-op programs, job shadowing, mentoring, and social media campaigns are a few options.

If jobs continue to go unfilled because job seekers look elsewhere or frontline staff leave after a few years, service will suffer and tourism businesses will lose an important source of experienced mid-level and management employees. At stake? Our success and economic impact in an extremely competitive global market.

Have you noticed that the number of people working in tourism seems to vary? You go to one presentation and there are 1.8 million people in tourism. At another, there are 1.78 million, and at yet another, the number drops to fewer than a million. And those are just the national numbers—forget the provincial and territorial ones. Why the inconsistency?

For one, the number of people working in tourism has been growing—rapidly. Over the past several years, the tourism sector has been adding jobs at a faster rate than the overall economy. Some of the confusion stems from new yearly numbers being released and used, while job numbers from past years are still being quoted in reports and presentations. For example, the 2011 census counted 1.6 million people employed in tourism. The 2016 census had over 1.8 million (1,833,190 to be exact). Until the 2016 census data was recently released, the 2011 data was still being used, and it takes a while for everyone to make the shift.

But what about that 1.78 million number? In short: the census isn’t the only source of information on tourism jobs. To explain why there are so many numbers out there, let’s examine the three datasets commonly used by Tourism HR Canada.

The census is our most recent dataset, counting 1.8 million people working in the tourism sector in 2016. The census is based on individual Canadians self-reporting a number of demographic factors about themselves, including their jobs and the industry in which they work. This makes it our most detailed dataset. Whenever you see a statistic such as 26% of tourism workers are immigrants, we are using census data. The census captures very detailed data, but only every fifth year, and the data is for a single point in time—usually April or May. Were the census taken in July or August—the height of Canada’s tourism season—it would likely show an even higher number of people working in tourism. If it were taken in January, it would show a lower number.

A second dataset we use evens out the monthly fluctuations in tourism employment and provides information for the years in between censuses. This is the Provincial-Territorial Human Resource Module (PTHRM). The PTHRM provides detailed information on the number of jobs in the tourism sector by province and territory. Unlike the census, the PTHRM counts jobs, not individuals. Also, it captures full-year jobs. A full-year job is defined as regular work for the period of one year, regardless of the number of hours per week. If the work exists for only a fraction of a year, then it only counts as the corresponding fraction of a job. The latest PTHRM is available for the years 1997 to 2015. In 2015, it showed there were 1.78 million full-year tourism jobs in Canada.

Finally, the labour force survey (LFS) can be used to show the level of employment and unemployment in tourism. Generally, we only use the LFS to show unemployment, to avoid confusion with employment numbers available from the census and PTHRM. However, we occasionally draw on the LFS when we need to show the monthly fluctuations in employment that occur within the tourism sector. The LFS surveys a sample of Canadian households—representing roughly 56,000 individuals each month. As a sample, it is prone to more variability than the census or PTHRM. But, at the national level, it can give us a good picture of monthly employment trends.

Labour Force Survey: Monthly Labour Force Size January 2011 to June 2018

The labour force survey also provides annual averages of employment. These tend to show a higher level of employment in tourism than the PTHRM or census. This is partly due to the level of refinement in the datasets: the LFS includes some sub-industries that are removed from the PTHRM. But it is also partly due to the PTHRM showing the number of jobs, whereas the LFS covers the entire labour force and includes both the employed—who are filling jobs—and the unemployed, who are not. However, even if we only consider employed individuals, the LFS does tend to show the tourism sector being a larger employer than the PTHRM or census do.

Tourism Jobs and Employees (Census, PTHRM and Labour Force Survey)

All three datasets covered so far show the total number of either people or jobs that exist within the tourism sector. But, there is another measure of tourism employment. This one measures the total number of jobs in the Canadian economy that are caused by tourists spending money. Not every job in the tourism sector is due to tourists. For example, the restaurant industry derives about 20% of its revenue from tourists—enough for it to be considered part of the tourism sector, but 80% of revenue and therefore about 80% of restaurant jobs are due to local residents.

In Canada, the national tourism indicators (NTI) track the number of jobs directly caused by tourism spending. These numbers are often used by destination marketing organizations because their mandate is to increase the number of tourists and local spending is less of a concern. The NTI reports the number of “jobs due to tourism”, whereas the datasets used by Tourism HR Canada report “jobs in tourism industries”. The difference is significant: in 2015 there were 1.78 million jobs in tourism industries, but 708,000 jobs directly caused by tourism spending.

Jobs in Tourism Industries (PTHRM) vs Jobs Due to Tourism (NTI)

Regardless of the dataset, the takeaway should be the rapid growth of tourism. The data that examine jobs in tourism industries show the tourism sector is growing at a faster rate than the economy as a whole. From 2011 to 2016, the census showed an increase of 3.8% in the number of employed individuals in Canada. And in tourism? An increase of 11.0%. Similarly, from 2011 to 2015, the PTHRM showed an overall growth rate of 4.0% in Canadian jobs, but 7.0% growth for tourism.

With competition for labour intensifying, tourism employers are positioning themselves as desirable places to work and, relatedly, boosting the image of tourism employment as a whole.

Marketing campaigns that seek to build an employer’s brand have been highlighting innovative HR practices and unique benefits, which help pique the interest of those who may never have considered a job or career with them—or in tourism at all.

McDonalds, for example, has a series of recruitment ads in which employees detail the advantages of working with them: skills that will last a lifetime, such as leadership, communication, teamwork, problem solving; a supportive environment; training; advancement opportunities.

Club Med has published videos on social media to let potential job seekers see not only how the company operates but also learn about the people behind the company. The company promotes the Club Med Spirit with the slogan “Find the real you”, highlighting that employment at the company helps develop existing skills, learn new skills, and tap into unknown talents.

The Radisson Blu Hotel also uses videos and social media to highlight why potential job seekers would want to work there and to provide a realistic depiction of what a typical day is like for employees in specific occupations.

However, not all employers have the resources to build such campaigns. Recognizing that many tourism businesses are small and medium-sized, other tourism stakeholders have initiated strategies to improve the employment image from broader perspective.

Tourisme Bas-Saint-Laurent and its regional partners produced a television promotion showcasing why people should work in the industry and the type of training required, along with various testimonials. It also highlighted the importance of tourism to the region.

Restaurants Canada produced a brochure detailing the importance of Canada’s food and beverage industry as an employer. In addition to providing high-level statistics, the brochure highlights its important role in providing many Canadians with their first employment experience. It also profiles various restaurant owners from diverse backgrounds and regions in Canada who explain their motivations and their connections with their communities.

With the labour gap broadening, Tourism HR Canada will continue to share a variety of strategies to increase the attractiveness of working in tourism. We detail a number of current initiatives in Bottom Line: Bridging the Labour Gap. A summary of the report is available free of charge, or the full downloadable report can be purchased here.

Tourism HR Canada is making available new data on the tourism labour force in each province and territory in Canada. This data comes from the 2016 census and provides information on the demographics of the tourism labour market, including age, gender, work patterns, immigrant status, and education level.

Across Canada, there were over 1.8 million individuals employed in tourism industries in 2016, ranging from just over a thousand individuals in Nunavut to almost 700,000 individuals in Ontario.

You can search through these new tables to find information on the tourism sector in your region. Some examples:

  • In British Columbia, 13.3% of the employed labour force worked in the tourism sector
  • Immigrants made up 23.5% of workers in Saskatchewan’s tourism sector
  • Almost half of workers in the North West Territories accommodation industry were Indigenous
  • Tourism employed over 62,000 individuals in Manitoba

As a service sector, the individuals who work for us are key to tourism in Canada continuing to grow and thrive. To ensure our sector is not just a destination for tourists, but also a destination for Canadian workers, we must understand who works for us.

These tables present only a portion of the available data—there is also information for 20 census metropolitan areas, for the year 2011, and data can be cross tabulated upon request. For further details email