Overnight visits to Ottawa will increase next year after a modest jump in 2013, according to a new forecast by the Conference Board of Canada.
The think tank predicts that the number of visitors to the region will increase 2.8 per cent next year to over 4.6 million.
That’s a big change from the Conference Board’s prediction for 2013. The think tank predicts that the number of tourists who visited Ottawa this year will only increase 0.2 per cent from last year.
Business travel will see the biggest jump – 6.2 per cent – after declining 4.3 per cent this year, the organization predicts.
“Visits to the city are poised for solid growth next year as demand strengthens in all travel markets, boosted by additional visitors attending conventions, as well as Ottawa’s return to the CFL and its newly renovated stadium,” the report states.
With an increase in the number of tourists, the Conference Board is predicting that more tourist dollars will be coming into the city.
The report predicts that tourist spending will increase by almost six per cent next year and that this trend will continue after that, with tourists spending over $1.2 billion in the city by 2015.
“Growth in overnight visits is expected to continue over the following few years, with the 2015 completion of Lansdowne Park’s redevelopment, which includes the construction of an area that will blend a combination of shops, offices, and residences,” the report states.
While the Conference Board is predicting that tourism will increase nationwide, it warns that “growth will remain modest, as consumer confidence in Canada and in many of Canada’s key international markets remains well below pre-recession levels.”
The number of visitors from the United States is also expected to increase, though numbers “will remain well below levels seen a decade ago.”