News release

January Tourism Stats Available

Nova Scotia welcomed 104,200 visitors in January, three per cent, or 2,600, fewer than last January.

"Our tourism numbers are fairly consistent over the long term. We've had some ups and downs but we're holding ground in the face of significant challenges," said Bill Dooks, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage. "We'll continue to roll out our refreshed brand, in close partnership with the industry, to welcome more visitors in 2008."

The number of people travelling to Nova Scotia by road decreased by eight per cent while air visitation grew by eight per cent or 3,000 visitors.

Last fall, the department introduced new tourism regions to help groups market products and experiences more effectively. The new regions are Halifax Metro, South Shore, Yarmouth and Acadian Shores, Fundy Shore and Annapolis Valley, Northumberland Shore, Cape Breton Island, and Eastern Shore.

Accommodations statistics will now be reported according to these new tourism regions.

Room nights sold for January were up five per cent provincewide compared with last January, with six of seven regions posting increases.

Nova Scotia's comprehensive system for reporting tourism statistics includes counting overnight visitors -- excluding Nova Scotia residents -- at all entry points to the province and gathering the number of room nights sold from licensed accommodation operators.

Detailed tourism statistics can be found on the Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage website at www.gov.ns.ca/dtc/pubs/insights . Statistics for February are expected to be released in early April.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

Nova Scotia welcomed 104-thousand 200 visitors in January, three per cent fewer than January 2007 when there were 106-thousand 800 visitors.

Room nights sold for January were up five per cent compared with the same period last year. Six out of seven regions had an increase.

Tourism, Culture and Heritage Minister Bill Dooks says the numbers are fairly consistent over the long term.

Mr. Dooks says with a new brand, the department is rolling out the tourism plan with industry partners to welcome more visitors in 2008.

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Media Contact:

Tina Thibeau
Tourism, Culture and Heritage 902-424-4817 E-mail: