5 reasons to play tourist in your own city
The COVID-19 pandemic, confinement and reduced air traffic have resulted in some deep reflection on how we look at tourism and changed the way we travel.
Mass tourism modelled on the capitalist economic system is increasingly frowned upon, to the point where residents of Venice or Dubrovnik no longer hide their animosity toward tourists flooding crowded attractions.
What if we travelled differently? What if we visited different places? And what if we slowed things down a bit, travelled in a more environment-friendly way and encouraged more local travel?
1. The grass is greener on this side
We tend to overlook the charms of our own region because they’re in front of our eyes every day. When brought into focus, they have just as much to offer as popular tourist destinations.
Set out as an explorer to discover new places and businesses, those classics found in tourist guides as well as other well-kept secrets.
You have to get off the beaten path to do this. Leave the car at home! There is nothing better than strolling or cycling through a neighbourhood that you’re not familiar with.
Let yourself be guided by the watchwords of the day: wandering and discovery.
2. Say goodbye to the unexpected
Uncertainty surrounding travel plans has curbed the enthusiasm of tourists who now prefer to stay at home rather than pass through airports or cross borders.
This is a problem quickly solved if you decide on a nearby destination to visit. You reduce the risk of a last-minute cancellation and a subsequent travel insurance claim.
In short, you are more likely to have a successful trip than if you insist on going abroad at all costs.
3. Help strengthen your local economy
Domestic tourism generated $63.3 billion from January to September 2018 while spending by international travellers totalled $15.5 billion.
This highlights the effect Canadian tourists have on the national economy, with 1.8 million jobs dependent on tourism.
Nowadays, buying local is more than just a catchphrase. It has become a way of life as we are more aware than ever of the need to support local businesses through our daily purchases and forgo those that contribute little to our local economy.
It is estimated that for every $100 spent in local businesses, $68 will stay in the community. When you spend that same $100 in a national retail chain, only $43 stays in the community.
Besides this positive economic argument, you will also reduce your carbon footprint and promote local sourcing for the businesses you support.
5. Yes, you are covered!
Your medical costs are covered by the government health insurance plan when travelling in your home province.
You therefore have nothing to worry about if you have a health scare while away or if you are already suffering from an illness.