U.S. residents continue to love Canada when it comes to tourist visits.
In June, Americans made 2.1 million trips to this country, up 3.5 per cent from May and the second highest monthly total this year after March, according to Statistics Canada.
“U.S. residents made 378,000 overnight trips to Canada by plane in June, up 5.4 per cent from May. The largest gain was recorded by British Columbia, an increase of 16.2 per cent over May, following two months of decline,” said the federal agency on Monday.
“U.S. residents made a total of 1.4 million car trips to Canada in June. This was an increase of 3.5 per cent over May. Car trips accounted for almost seven in 10 visits to Canada by U.S. residents in June. The number of same-day car trips to Canada rose 4.6 per cent to 693,000 in June, while overnight car trips increased 2.3 per cent to 702,000.”
StatsCan said Ontario was the most popular province of entry into Canada during June, with 826,000 car trips from the United States. It was followed by British Columbia (299,000) and Quebec (138,000).
“Residents of overseas countries (countries other than the United States) made 562,000 trips to Canada in June. This was little changed (-0.1 per cent) from May. Travel from Europe edged up 0.1 per cent over May, while travel from Asia was down 0.8 per cent. Travel from China saw a decline of 5.7 per cent in June, as the United Kingdom (321,000) regained the lead in the number of travellers to Canada so far in 2018,” explained StatsCan.
“The majority of overseas travellers in June entered Canada through Ontario (41.7 per cent), British Columbia (30.9 per cent) and Quebec (17.9 per cent).”
The federal agency said that in June Canadians made 3.8 million trips to the United States, down 1.1 per cent from May. This was the third consecutive month of declines in trips by Canadians to the United States.
“More than three-quarters of the trips (2.9 million) were made by car. A 2.5 per cent decline in same-day car trips was partially offset by a 0.5 per cent increase in overnight car trips. Even with the overall decrease from May to June, total car travel by Canadians to the United States so far this year is 11.2 per cent higher than at the same point last year,” said Statistics Canada.
“Residents of British Columbia took 811,000 car trips to the United States, down 6.5 per cent from May, and a second consecutive month of decline in car trips to the United States. June also marked the start of a significant wildfire season in British Columbia. Overnight plane trips by Canadian residents to the United States were up 0.3 per cent from May, to 779,000. Canadian residents made 1.0 million trips to overseas destinations (countries other than the United States) in June. This was up 0.7 per cent from the previous month.”
Mario Toneguzzi is a veteran Calgary-based journalist who worked for 35 years for the Calgary Herald, including 12 years as a senior business writer.