Canadian Tourism Employment Monthly Snapshot – August 2019

(seasonally unadjusted)

In August 2019, the unemployment rate1 in the tourism sector was at 4.9%, which is 0.2 percentage points lower than the rate reported in August 2018, but higher than the previous month (July 2019), when the unemployment rate stood at 4.7%.

At 4.9%, tourism’s unemployment rate was well below Canada’s seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate of 6.3%.

With the exception of Accommodations and Recreation & Entertainment, all tourism industry groups have reported lower unemployment rates than the same month last year (Table 1).

On a provincial basis, tourism unemployment rates ranged from 0.0% in Prince Edward Island to 6.5% in Alberta.

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

Tourism employment comprised 11.4% of the total Canadian labour force for the month of August.

Table 1 – Employment Rate by Tourism Industry Group – August 2018/2019
Tourism Industry Group2 Unemployment Rate –
August 2018
Unemployment Rate –
August 2019
Tourism 5.1% 4.9%
Accommodations 3.1% 5.1%
Food and Beverage 5.8% 5.3%
Recreation and Entertainment 4.1% 4.6%
Transportation 5.9% 5.3%
Travel Services 3.1% 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 August 17, 2019.