Friday, July 19, 2024
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The summer of 2023 was a good season for tourism within the Outaouais region, despite the challenges posed by adverse weather conditions, says a survey conducted by Tourisme Outaouais.
The findings come from the not-for-profit organization’s annual member survey and represent data collected from tourism operators in the region between mid-June and the end of the September long weekend.
According to Tourisme Outaouais, “43 per cent of respondents described their summer season as very good to exceptional, 37 per cent described it as good, and 20 per cent said it was average or disappointing.”
About half of respondents reported visitor numbers greater than or about the same as those from last summer.
Tourisme Outaouais’ chief executive officer Julie Kinnear concluded that generally, this meant members had a good season, despite many businesses being negatively affected by weather conditions.
“Overall, tourism businesses had a good summer season, particularly in sectors such as accommodation, festivals and museums,” Kinnear said in a press release.
“Outdoor businesses, however, saw their season negatively affected by the weather. Still, the results are showing that with its diverse and accessible offer, the Outaouais region continues to shine.”
In total, 49 per cent of respondents reported “poor weather” as a contributing factor to a decline in visitor numbers, citing wildfire smoke as the leading cause for slower business.
Other reasons highlighted were the “upswing in outbound international travel and the uncertainty surrounding inflation.”
Occupancy rates in Outaouais accommodations are also up from previous years. This year occupancy rates were 40 per cent higher than those in the first year of the pandemic, and only three per cent away from pre-pandemic levels.
Tourisme Outaouais’ survey also reported a “healthy number” of international tourists in the Outaouais region, with 75 per cent of respondents reporting having welcomed international guests over the summer, primarily from France, the United States and Germany.
Tourisme Outaouais’ survey concluded by suggesting respondents felt optimistic about the 2023 autumn operating season, with 70 per cent of tourism operators expecting a “good, very good or exceptional fall season.”

Connor Lalande
Outaouais Sep. 21, 2023

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