WHITEHORSE—Minister of Tourism and Culture Mike Nixon is leading a delegation to Vancouver to attend the first ever Yukon-Japan tourism marketplace on January 28. Fifteen tourism-related businesses are travelling with the minister.
“We’re excited that we’ve had such positive interest from both Yukon’s tourism industry and Japanese tour operators located in greater Vancouver,” Nixon said. “For Yukon, Japan is our fastest growing international market. The interaction between the two groups will help increase awareness of Yukon as a year-round destination.”
The marketplace itinerary includes one-on-one appointments and informal networking for Yukon businesses with 14 Japanese tour operators responsible for the Japan market facilitated by Tourism Yukon. Suppliers of trade-ready products will have opportunities to conduct short presentations about their business, fostering greater appreciation for Yukon products, services and travel experiences.
Maple Fun Tours is a Vancouver company that specializes in providing travel packages to clients in Japan. Traditionally their clients are high-yield travellers looking for active vacation packages.
“For us, the winter season aurora viewing program has always been strong,” Maple Fun Tours president Bill Bessho said. “The opportunity to meet with Yukon suppliers and discuss other products and services such as viewing the fall colours and taking part in soft adventure travel is very much of interest. We look forward to learning more about what Yukon has to offer, and how we can share that information with our clients here in Canada and wholesalers in Japan.”
Boréale Biking is an established summer Yukon adventure tourism business that recently purchased a lodge and will now be operating year-round.
“We are very excited about this opportunity to interact directly with Japanese trade,” owner and operator of Boréale Biking Marsha Cameron said. “As a small company, opportunities like this help to bring Yukon tourism operators into the forefront when larger international tour operators are choosing which destinations to showcase to their client base.”
Japan is Yukon’s fastest growing international market and ranks fourth in overseas visitation. Between 2009 and 2011, Yukon saw an 800 per cent increase in Japanese visitation. In 2012, Yukon hosted more than 3,500 Japanese visitors who primarily experienced aurora viewing excursions.
Communications, Tourism and Culture