Nova Scotia Business Journal - december Edition
Nova Scotia with a bow on top: Promoting tourism experiences as the perfect gift
One of the challenges facing the tourism industry is the perception that it is a seasonal industry, and while there are many businesses that are open for a set number of months, there are also hundreds of businesses that are open year round.
Businesses sometimes open on a seasonal basis to take advantage of the Seasonal Business Designation, which reduces their commercial tax when open for a limited number of months. While the program has helped many small businesses manage costs, the larger issue of high commercial tax rates continues to be a disincentive for operators to stay open longer.
Business owners need to be creative as they look at ways to drive visitation to their regions on a year-round basis. They need to let Nova Scotians know there are some very cool experiences that they can take advantage of during those long months of winter. They also need to encourage people to purchase unique gifts that will promote travel throughout the province.
When I asked some operators what they were doing to encourage Christmas or holiday business, I received a variety of responses. A number of adventure tourism outfitters told me they are offering gift cards for purchase and winter experiences. Many inns are highlighting romance and culinary packages. Themed weekend getaways are being offered at a number of year-round accommodations as well. The perfect gift could be a ski package that includes a local accommodation or a health and wellness retreat, and there are a number of cultural events hosted across Nova Scotia during the holiday season that could be built into a winter getaway.
All tourism operators should encourage people to check out the provincial website www.novascotia.com for some inspiration this holiday season — Nova Scotia might just be the perfect gift!