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COVID-19 Weekly Tourism Sector Update

April 30th, 2020


The tourism sector is one of the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, as all leisure travel continues to be discouraged. But every week, new support programs & relief measures continue to be announced. Tourism Prince Rupert is committed to the resiliency & recovery of our local tourism sector. We will continue to provide resources, support our local tourism businesses, work collaboratively with local stakeholders such as the Prince Rupert & District Chamber of Commerce, and engage with the Ministry of Tourism, Arts, & Culture to advocate for tourism-specific relief. 

Learn more about the work of Tourism Prince Rupert anytime by visiting our Corporate Website.
Visit the Tourism Prince Rupert Website

Announcing the Northern BC Tourism Resiliency Program

Are you a tourism business impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic? Northern BC Tourism Association is pleased to announce the launch of the Northern BC Tourism Resiliency Program.
The Northern BC Tourism Resiliency Program will provide Northern BC tourism businesses with meaningful, one-on-one support to access and navigate programs available as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. With the help of a program manager, tourism businesses will have support to develop a tailored relief plan, with support accessing the various support programs now available from the provincial & federal governments, as well as other tourism-specific resources. 
Register for the NBC Tourism Resiliency Program

Message from Honourable Lisa Beare - Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture 

With each passing week, people across our province and around the country continue to sacrifice for the greater good of our communities. Those working in the tourism and hospitality sectors were among the first to feel the effects of physical distancing and travel restrictions...
We know that the uncertainty about how long these measures will last is causing significant stress on you and your communities. That is why I wanted to reach out to you to talk about what we are doing to help. 

I continue to be in close contact with industry representatives, including the Tourism Industry Association of British Columbia, destination marketing organizations, the BC Hotel Association, and many others. The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture is also receiving feedback and questions from individual operators through Destination BC’s dedicated COVID-19 email inbox:
Read the Entire Message Here

7 Ways to Support British Columbia’s Travel Industry

Our current focus is on staying home, and this reality means that small businesses—the lifeblood of many tourism experiences—are shouldering the weight of the virus’s impact. More than 90 per cent of the province’s 19,000 businesses have fewer than 50 employees, and while some operations are showing their support to those on the front lines, many are not in a position to do so, as they’ve had to pause operations indefinitely.

So, how do we help our local industries survive? After all, these are more than businesses—these people connect us to the world around us, to our roots and to other cultures; they offer rich experiences that inspire us, fire up our imaginations, and offer a feeling of belonging. They are integral to the communities we live in and lean on today, as well as to the communities that will help us explore later, when the time is right.

Here are seven ways to support British Columbia’s travel industry—now...

Read More

Fishing & Hunting During COVID-19

As we make it further into Spring and most of us are housebound due to the virus, thoughts about getting out fishing are heightened, but so too are concerns about out-of-town visitors.
As noted by the Sport Fishing Institute when the Provincial Health Officer released fishing and hunting guidelines in early April, it is important that fishing has been acknowledged as an essential service and activity for British Columbians. At the same time, it is critical that all participating in these activities continue to respect social distancing guidelines and minimize travel.

As a reminder, a link to the guidelines and details below:

From the Province of BC: Orders & Guidance for Fishing & Hunting

If you cannot meet all the COVID-19 orders and guidance to fish or hunt safely, do not go fishing or hunting.
  • Only fish and hunt with members of your family or others you are living with
  • Stay 2 metres (6 feet) from other people you come across
  • Do not share vehicles with individuals outside of your family or others you are living with
  • Fish and hunt locally
  • Wash your hands often, especially around communal areas such as boat ramps, gates, etc.
  • Follow all travel advisories and self isolation requirements
  • Follow all municipal, First Nation community, provincial and federal closures (e.g. parks, infrastructure, etc.)
New protocols and operating procedures for outdoor activities and businesses will be developed when COVID-19 restrictions are relaxed. But, changes to these policies will be made available only when it is appropriate to do so.

Learn more at:

State of Tourism in Canada Report

The latest State of Tourism in Canada during COVID-19 Dashboard report prepared by Twenty31 is now available to the industry.

This project is made possible through Canadian Experiences Fund contributions. 

Read the complete report HERE.

Government Updates

Prime Minister Trudeau has announced that an agreement has been reached with the provinces and territories regarding the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program:
  • The program will provide forgivable loans to qualifying commercial property owners to cover 50% of three-monthly rent payments that are payable by eligible small business tenants who are experiencing financial hardship during April, May, and June 2020. 
  • The loans will be forgiven if the mortgaged property owner agrees to reduce eligible small business tenants’ rent by at least 75% for the three corresponding months under a rent forgiveness agreement, which will include a term not to evict the tenant while the agreement is in place. The small business tenant would cover the remainder, up to 25% of the rent.
  • Impacted small business tenants are businesses paying less than $50,000 per month in rent and who have temporarily ceased operations or have experienced at least a 70% drop in pre-COVID-19 revenues. This support will also be available to non-profit and charitable organizations.
The Prime Minister also referenced this week the $9 billion dollar plan for students – the Canada Emergency Student Benefit. 
  • This benefit will provide for $1250 a month to students during summer. 
  • The government is also investing to create 76,000 additional jobs for students in those sectors that are actively contributing to the fight against COVID-19, in addition to jobs available through the Canada Summer Jobs Program.
  • There will be specific support outlined for First Nations, Inuit and Metis students. Scholarships, fellowships and grants will be extended – along with a doubling of student grants for low- and middle-income students in 2020-2021.
  • The government is working with opposition parties on legislation in the House of Commons, and will be introducing a bill today for the Canada Emergency Student Benefit.
The government will also be improving the Canada Child Benefit in May to support parents. In addition, to support people with low income, the government will be increasing the GST credit. The Prime Minister reminded Canadians that they have until August 2020 to pay their income taxes.

Yesterday, the latest COVID-19 modelling was shared, showing that the curve has flattened in many parts of the country due to social distancing efforts. The Prime Minister urged Canadians to continue following the social distancing recommendations for the foreseeable future.

Read more from the Government of Canada at:

Read more from the Province of BC at:

Upcoming Webinars

COVID-19 Business Resiliency Webinars

Thursday April 30 at 1:00 PM PT

The webinars will be posted on the GVBOT website and YouTube channel following the broadcast.
Register Now

Small Business BC Webinars

Small Business BC are hosting a series of specialized free webinars to tackle the challenges faced by COVID-19. These webinars are geared at equipping businesses in our province with the skills and knowledge they need to survive the new realities of our COVID economy.
Learn More

Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance Webinars

Thursday, April 30 @ 1:00 pm Eastern
Your Corporate Sponsorship Revenue Program – The New Normal Post COVID-19

Thursday, May 7 @ 1:00 pm ET
Cancellation and Postponement of Major Sporting Events in Canada
Previous Webinars

BC Tourism Resiliency Network Webinars

Small Business BC are hosting a series of specialized free webinars to tackle the challenges faced by COVID-19. These webinars are geared at equipping businesses in our province with the skills and knowledge they need to survive the new realities of our COVID economy.
Learn More

COVID-19 Resources

Tourism Prince Rupert is continously updating our COVID-19 resource page to keep you up-to-date with the latest programs & resources. For a complete summary of the local, provincial, federal, and tourism-specific resources available, please visit our COVID-19 resource page at the link below. 
TPR COVID-19 Resource Page
For up to date information on the effects of COVID-19 on the tourism sector in British Columbia, please visit
Tourism Prince Rupert will be working hard to provide you with email updates regarding any new advisories or support programs as they are announced.

Please note we are only providing new information each week. For access to our past newsletters, please visit our Newsletter Archive page.

If you have any questions, please contact:

Ceilidh Marlow
Executive Director, Tourism Prince Rupert
Phone: 778-361-0440
Copyright © 2020 Tourism Prince Rupert, All rights reserved.

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