Travel and Tourism Industry in Canada - Statistics & Facts

The travel and tourism industry is one of the largest in the world, it is also a dominant industry in Canada, where the contribution of tourism to the gross domestic product (GDP) totalled 35.37 billion Canadian dollars. The majority of this came from leisure travel spending which accounted for 62 percent of the direct contribution of travel and tourism to GDP in Canada. The industry is not only beneficial to the country's GDP but also the job market, in 2017, travel and tourism generated over 738,000 jobs across Canada.

Around 26 billion Canadian dollars in travel-related expenses was spent by foreign visitors to Canada in 2017. These included expenditures related to business, education, healthcare, as well as for personal reasons. Canada is renowned for its free and universal single-payer health care system, and spending for health related reasons by visitors to Canada amounted to about 169 million Canadian dollars in 2017. But by far the most amount of money is generated from personal travel expenses of foreign visitors, which amounted to around 22.79 billion Canadian dollars in 2017.

Much of the tourism in Canada is centered on its five major metropolitan areas: Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary, and Ottawa. The province of Ontario— home of the nation’s capital, Ottawa, and the most populous city in Canada, Toronto—receives the highest amount of foreign visitors. The United States is the leading source of foreign visitors to Canada, with over 24 million U.S. citizens visiting Canada in 2017.

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