Thompson-Okanagan hosted almost 10 million tourists in 2018 - InfoNews

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Thompson-Okanagan hosted almost 10 million tourists in 2018

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June 28, 2019 - 7:00 AM

The Thompson-Okanagan hosted over nine-and-half million tourists for an overnight stay last year.

New data released by the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association shows 9.6 million visitors stayed for a minimum one night in the region during 2018. The majority of tourists, 8.1-million, came from within Canada with 1.5-million coming from the international market. Foreign tourists were made up primarily of visitors from the U.S. which made up 65 per cent of all international travellers.

For domestic tourists, July was the busiest month of the year with approximately 700,000 tourists visiting the region. That number dropped dramatically in August with under 500,000 tourists staying for more than one night. International tourists numbers were up in August compared to July.

The statistics come from TELUS, which records cell phone tower data allowing them to only count visitors who don't live in the region and monitor the length of time individuals spend in the Thompson-Okanagan. The statistics only count those who stayed overnight in the Thompson-Okanagan. As 2018 was the first year the data had been collected comparative numbers from previous years are not available.

Of the 8.1-million Canadain visitors, 56 per cent were from B.C., 27 per cent Alberta and five per year from Saskatchewan. Visitors from Ontario also made up five per cent of domestic travellers.

Internationally, after the U.S., Australians were the regions biggest tourists with 115,450 spending at least one night in the region. German visitors made up five per cent of international tourists with 70,930 tourists visiting the region and the U.K. made up four percent of the market share with 62,340 visitors. Visitors from China made up four per cent of international travellers with 68,370 tourists visiting.

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