Sports Tourism in Canada

posted Jun 12, 2018

Article by ATB Financial's Economics & Research Team:

With the 2018 FIFA World Cup starting this week, The Owl is turning its attention to tourist spending on sports in Canada. Spending by tourists on sports products in Canada reached $916 million in 2016, up nearly three per cent from 2015. This spending was almost equally split between organized sport (which includes professional leagues, competitions, etc.) and governance, funding and professional support (fees for public facilities, etc.). Of the $916 million spent on sports across the country in 2016, international visitors spent $328.9 million on sports products. Spending by visitors from abroad on sports products was equally split between organized sport and governance, funding and professional support.

While the latest Canadian sports tourism numbers can’t be broken out provincially, according to Alberta’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism, “high-profile cultural events, including those related to sport and recreation, attract visitors and investors from around the world, help stimulate the economy, and provide opportunities to enhance the trading and sharing of Alberta’s products and services.”

Even though this year’s World Cup is being hosted in Russia, the spectacle will likely have a positive effect on Alberta’s service industry this summer. For example, past global sporting events like the Olympics have increased sales at restaurants and bars across our province.

This Thursday marks the beginning of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Billions of eyes will be glued to television sets around the globe to see who will be crowned the world’s football champion. The first game of the FIFA World Cup takes place this Thursday at 9 AM. The hosts, Russia, take on Saudi Arabia.

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Sports Tourism in Taber

The Town of Taber & Municipal District of Taber are proud to host the 2018 Southern Alberta Summer Games on July 4-7. This kind of event brings many small rural communities together and supports not only our sports and recreational facilities but our local accommodations, restaurants and shopping economies. It creates opportunities for special cultural events and social activities to take place. A lot of resources go into something like this, but the socioeconomic return is incredibly valuable to all aspects of the community.