Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Manitobans plan on staying closer to home

High cost of travel a concern: survey

  • Print
The fact many Manitobans are scaling back travel plans this summer  bode well for area tourist attractions such as the Winnipeg Folk Festival.

JOHN WOODS / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Enlarge Image

The fact many Manitobans are scaling back travel plans this summer bode well for area tourist attractions such as the Winnipeg Folk Festival. Photo Store

The home fires are burning a little brighter this summer as more Manitobans scale back their travel plans in the wake of rising gasoline prices and a growing desire to save money or pay down debt, a new survey has found.

In its 2014 Summer Travel Outlook report released Monday, BMO Financial Group said a recent online survey found substantially fewer Manitoba/Saskatchewan residents are planning summer trips to other provinces.

A senior Travel Manitoba official said there were a number of encouraging aspects about the survey results. One was 55 per cent of the Manitoba respondents plan to travel within the province this year, and the other was that 81 per cent of Alberta residents said they plan to travel within Canada.

Linda Whitfield, the agency's vice-president of sales and marketing, said Alberta was one of the provinces Travel Manitoba targeted with this year's marketing campaign, and there are two major new tourist attractions opening within the next three months -- the Canadian Museum for Human Rights and the Assiniboine Park Zoo's Journey to Churchill exhibit -- that should be big draws for both local and out-of-province visitors.

"It's absolutely perfect timing..., Whitfield said. "This is great news for us."

The survey results also bode well for many the province's established tourist attractions including The Forks, the Winnipeg Folk Festival and the myriad of other summer festivals and cultural events.

The BMO survey found 47 per cent of Manitoba/Saskatchewan residents are planning to travel to other provinces versus 62 per cent in 2013. Fewer of them are also planning trips to the United States -- 29 per cent versus 47 per cent. Prairie residents also plan to spend less this year on summer travel -- an average of $1,699 compared with an average of $2,341 in 2013, the bank said.

"The tempering in travel plans is mostly attributed to financial circumstance, with one-fifth (22 per cent) scaling back in order to save more, and 16 per cent focusing on paying off debt," the bank said.

Sixty-seven per cent also said high gas prices were also influencing their travel plans, with 33 per cent saying they'll be taking fewer out-of-town trips and 27 per cent saying their were planning more "staycations."

The Prairie findings are in keeping with a national trend that will see more Canadians staying closer to home this summer, and for many of the same reasons.

"Affordability is top of mind for Canadian travellers, likely because of their renewed focus on saving this summer as well as other factors, including the Canadian dollar and fuel prices," said Nick Mastromarco, BMO's managing director, credit card products.

While the BMO survey suggests fewer Manitobans will travel to the United States or to other provinces this year, two local travel agents said they haven't seen any drop-off in the number of clients planning overseas jaunts.

"We've still got a good number of people going abroad for a variety of reasons," said Mary Jane Hiebert, general manager of Steinbach's Holiday Travel Inc. and Manitoba's representative on the board of directors of the Association of Canadian Travel Agents.

Daryl Silver, president of Winnipeg's Continental Travel Group, said European river cruises are also proving popular again this summer with his clients.

"You can see many countries in one trip... and you can see the best of the best along the way," he said.

Klarissa Johnson, 19, and her 20-year-old boyfriend, Joshua Myers, are two Winnipeggers who have already made a trek overseas. They went on a one-month European jaunt this spring, which took them to England, France, Italy and Greece.

"We went to Europe with our school (a few years ago) and got a little taste of it," Johnson said, "and we decided we wanted to go back.

She added it took them a year and a half to save up the money for the trip.

murray.mcneill@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition June 24, 2014 B4

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Keri Latimer looks for beauty in the dark and the spaces between the notes

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • Someone or thing is taking advantage of the inactivity at Kapyong Barracks,hundreds of Canada Geese-See Joe Bryksa’s goose a day for 30 days challenge- Day 15- May 22, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • A nesting goose sits on the roof of GoodLife Fitness at 143 Nature Way near Kenaston as the morning sun comes up Wednesday morning- See Bryksa’s Goose a Day Photo- Day 07- Web crop-May 09, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

What should the city do with the 102-year-old Arlington Street bridge?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google