Industry overview and the current state of the market place
Tourism has been one of the best attractions Canada offers to foreigners and its citizens as well. In fact, the tourism industry has been one of the booming industries of the last decade up until last year. The financial crisis influenced negatively on the tourism industry also. Tourism is viewed as a leisure and entertainment activity. In economic theory, consumers tend to save on tourist trips in difficult financial times. Nevertheless, experts claim that this industry has still much potential to express.
In order to assess the situation of the market it is best to refer to official figures from the government of Nova Scotia. These figures are from their official website. We will begin by assessing the travel and tourism market situation for all of Canada and then specify for Nova Scotia. According to official figures, during the last two years, 84% of Canadians took at least one overnight trip. That corresponds to 20.9 million people. There was also another 3.9 million which did not take any overnight trip but still traveled and went on travel. This brings the total number of people who traveled for tourism purposes up to 24.8 million. What is an important figure for our report is the fact that nearly all of Canadian travelers have travelled across Canada in one moment or the other. Regarding foreign destinations, the first place is booked by the United States followed by Europe and the Caribbean countries.
But, as we mentioned above, the financial crisis has had a negative impact on tourism traveling. Surveys demonstrate that many Canadians who did not travel refer to financial difficulties as the primary reasons for not doing so.
These financial reasons were by far more than the other given like those who relate to personal health concerns of the destination or issues regarding terrorism.
Nevertheless, Canadian citizens referring to those other reasons for not embarking on tourism traveling is quite far from the figures that come from the United States.
Also, we must mention that due to financial constraints the number of Canadian citizens which have visited the European continent during the last two years, compared to the last decade, declined significantly. But this market does still have a lot of potential. In fact, during 2008 and 2009, more than 2.5 million Canadian citizens from other provinces “took an overnight trip to the Atlantic Region. 74.3% (1,928,287) of these Atlantic Region trips were “pleasure trips”. Among those who took a pleasure trip to the Atlantic Region, 74.0% took two or more pleasure trips to the Atlantic Region, a repeat-visitor rate higher than any other province in Canada. During the last two years, the Atlantic Region was the fifth most frequently visited Canadian destination by Canadian Pleasure Travelers” (“Canadian Travel Report”, par. 1).
Nova Scotia was one of the preferred destinations for these pleasure trips.
The above mentioned are figures and facts that we must take seriously in relation to our new business. Later on this report we will make a better evaluation of those facts when we will talk about the competitive advantages on the market for our business.
Mission and goals of our company
We intend to form a new leisure travel company. This company will be based in in north Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada. This new business will be a tour guide and will have two or three minivans and other related vehicles. Each of these vehicles will have its own driver. These drivers will also serve as local guides for the travelers. They will be selected to have knowledge in this visitable area for the tourism to visit. Any visitor or traveler can rent the minivans for an entire day, more than one day or even just for a couple of hours. Our mission is to form a business company that will promote cultural and pleasure traveling for this beautiful region. More than just a for profit business, this would be a social responsible business. Of course there will be a for profit part as every business company. Nevertheless, the core value of this new company will be to promote an environmentally friendly form of tourism. Our goal is to get people from different parts of Canada and the world to enjoy the beautiful landscape of the region and get to know its friendly people. Our goal is to turn these tourism travels for leisure into an intensive, unforgettable, cultural exchange trip.
SWOT analysis for the company
In order to better understand how this company can perform in the future it is the case to do a SWOT analysis. One of the major strengths for this company is the fact that it promotes an environmentally friendly form of doing business. Yet another strength factor is the fact that it promotes cultural exchange which is an attractive factor for traveling. The environment is one of the hottest topics of the moment. This is especially true for North America, where people are becoming more and more aware of the fragility of nature and our role to prevent its destruction.
But like every other business company starting will not be easy. There are also many threats and weaknesses to be considered. The above mentioned financial difficulties that many people in Canada and around the globe are encountering are the primary threat to this business. Surveys tell us that most of the people who have not traveled for tourism purposes during the last two years have mentioned financial difficulties as a primary cause of this situation. We will leave it to the words of the Canadian travel report which states that:
“The current tourism environment presents both opportunities and challenges for Nova Scotia’s tourism industry. Some market segments are growing while other traditional markets for Canada and Nova Scotia are flat or declining. These shifts and changes are driven by many factors, including changing consumer expectations and demands, advancing technology, changing demographic values and international geopolitical issues.” (Canadian Travel Report”, par. 5)
Even though Canadians are perceived to be people who travel for tourism purposes mostly to enjoy shopping and dining, these are not the primary motivators behind their tourism traveling.
“Only 11% of the Canadian travellers who had participated in dining indicated that dining was the main reason for taking some of their trips. Similarly, only 14% of the Canadian travellers who had participated in shopping indicated that shopping was the main reason for taking some of their trips.” (“Canadian Travel Report”, par. 8)
So, this company can benefit from some unique opportunities. I will just mention two of them. These trips that our company offers can serve even as a sort of meditations where people get in touch directly with nature.
This sense of getting involved directly with nature is a strength factor which will attract many customers. Cultural exchange is also an attraction factor since it, also, is one of the trends of the moment.
Competitive advantages for the company
From the above analysis it can be understood that this company has as its primary advantage the fact that it does ‘hit hard’ the wallets of the customers. Being an activity which is based on the enjoyment of nature and cultural activities, it does not charge customers with heavy expenses. In fact, it offers to customers all the possibilities not to spend too much. They will have to pay the fee for the rent of the minivans and they are done with the company. Since the places they will go are natural, there are no pricy souvenirs or dining restaurants. Most probably they will get some food reserves with them before starting the trip and will have to spend nothing more until they finish it. This financial ‘dieting’ for this tourist activity is something that people will like. As we have mentioned above, many Canadians have complained that their finances did not allow them to embark on a tourist trip the last two years. But this could change if we offer them a tourism trip with minimal financial expenses.
Another competitive advantage is the fact that our business is related to nature. This fact makes it quite different from other tourism or travel businesses in the region. Many business companies try to get customers visit cities and historical sites, but only a few offer them the possibility to be in touch with the natural beauties of the region.
“Canadian travel report”. Ministry of Tourism of the Province of Ontario. 2009. Web.