Tofino’s tourism industry generates $240 million of economic impact, according to the town’s destination marketing organization Tourism Tofino.
Tourism Tofino announced the staggering figure in a media release on Tuesday that explained an economic impact and visitation study conducted by InterVISTAS Consulting Inc. found that tourism supports 2,670 direct jobs—1,720 full-time equivalent jobs—generating $60 million in annual wages.
The release adds that Tofino hosted an estimated 600,000 visitors in 2018 and that local businesses serving those visitors contribute over $57 million in municipal, provincial and federal tax revenues.
“This comprehensive and robust study verifies the vital role that tourism plays in sustaining our community, delivering revenue to fund and support infrastructure and services, and contributing to the quality of life we enjoy as residents,” said Tourism Tofino chair J.J. Belanger. “An additional takeaway is the finding that the jobs created and supported by Tofino’s visitors and our tourism operators extend well beyond tourism and reach all sectors of our local and regional economy.”
Through the release, Tourism Tofino said it commissioned the study in an effort to “provide the community with data to shape responsible tourism decision-making, carefully protecting a sustainable future while supporting the livelihoods of residents and Tofino’s overall economic health.”
The 10-month project collected information through surveys at tourism-related businesses as well as the visitors themselves while also drawing on its own visitation statistics and information provided by the District of Tofino, Destination British Columbia and Destination Canada.
“The study provides us all with much greater precision on the levels of visitation and business experienced throughout the year in Tofino,” said Tourism Tofino’s executive director Nancy Cameron. “This research significantly deepens our understanding of the economic and community benefits derived from tourism, yet allows us to take stock of our current state and responsibly create our future together with local government and residents.”