Fires bad for business
The Canadian Press - Aug 09 - BC Biz


B.C. tourism officials are starting to assess the impact of devastating wildfires and have received mixed feedback on the toll so far on the travel sector.

Maya Lange of Destination BC says businesses outside the fire zone have complained of cancellations, while evacuation orders and restrictions to backcountry parks, particularly in the Interior, have limited some service providers’ ability to operate.

She says most evidence of a slowdown in the sector has been anecdotal, and data reflecting the financial implications won’t be ready for another two to three months.

But, monitoring of tourists coming into the province week-to-week has shown visitor numbers remain on track.

Lange says that may mean visitors are changing their plans of where to go in the province rather than cancelling their trips entirely.

Destination BC has been working to inform potential visitors about what areas of the province are affected by fires, and Lange says the message appears to be getting through that not all of B.C. is burning.

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