BC Buy Local Week is December 2-8 which makes it a great time to write about Vancouver staycations and the value of buying local and vacationing locally.
We want to encourage local folk to buy local, shop local and do their holidaying here in Vancouver. Why? Because doing so helps people save money, time and the environment, plus support the local economy and our community. Let us explain. …
Vacationing Here at Home
Vancouver is ranked as one of the top tourist destinations on the planet. This year in fact, Vancouver expects 25 million people to fly though YVR Airport. Of course some of those travellers already live here, and others are on their way someplace else, but millions of people come from abroad to visit Vancouver.
Why do so many vacationers spend big money to travel great distances to holiday in the Lower Mainland? Is it because our region is a world-class destination? Because Metro Vancouver is beautiful, cosmopolitan, safe and friendly? Is it our amazing ski hills, mountains, beaches, ocean views, parks and nature? Or is it because of all the great restaurants, shopping opportunities, tourist attractions and places of interest to visit?
All of the above explains why tourists flock to Vancouver in the millions. For all the above same reasons, why don’t local folk vacation more here at home too?
To book a hotel in downtown Vancouver, or to check out current prices and bonus offers, click StayVancouverHotels.com.
Money, Supporting Local, Time and the Environment
The next time you think about forking over thousands of dollars and hopping on an airplane somewhere else, here are four more reasons why you, as a resident of the Lower Mainland, should spend your next vacation here at home: money, supporting the local economy, time and the environment.
Vacationing is expensive no matter where you go. You can reduce the cost of your holiday though by cutting down (or out) the cost of the travel.
Got a family of four and planning to fly south or overseas? Four flights at $500 each costs $2000 overall – and $500 is cheap for a flight – and that’s not including all the taxes and extra fees! A family of four can easily spend $4000 just for the right to sit in an airport, and then in a cramped seat, for half a day one way!
By vacationing close to home you can avoid the cost of air travel, or hundreds of dollars of gas with your car. You also don’t have to pay extra for out-of-province medical insurance. If you have an Entertainment Coupon Book, spend your time exploring free places of interest or if you know other ways to save, you can have an amazing time holidaying here at home without breaking the bank!
You can save a ton of money by staying in your home, doing daytrips and saving on accommodations too. That being said though, it’s always nice to “get away.” Vancouver hotels can be expensive, but not if you avoid the peak seasons or know where to look. Check out StayVancouverHotels.com for great rates and bonus perks in downtown Vancouver. Or consider camping in the summer.
Supporting the Local Economy
Did you know that for every $100 you spend with a locally-owned BC-based business that $46 is recirculated back into BC’s economy? (Source: LOCO BC and the Power of Purchasing.) And did you know that when you vacation here locally in Vancouver, as opposed to some place abroad, it helps support local businesses, employs local people and keeps dollars here in Vancouver?
When dollars stay in your community it benefits you! It helps improve employment opportunities for your kids, neighbours, friends and even you. It means extra tax dollars for better amenities in your municipality. And it means your dollars stay in your community, and circulate within it, infinitely more than if you shop from Amazon online, buy from multinational corporations or spend your dollars out of town.
Buy your produce from local growers at farmers markets. Purchase gifts for friends from local artisans. Invest your money with credit unions. Shop at locally-owned businesses. And explore the Lower Mainland and vacation here at home as much as you can! Just imagine the impact if we all did this more!
For more information about the benefits of supporting local businesses, click Benefits of Buying Local.
Another reason why local folk should vacation more at home is time. It costs time to travel! Preparing travel documents, waiting in airports, sitting on germ-infested airplanes and driving long distances consumes lots of hours.
And how often, especially in winter, and around Christmas time or during late summer hurricane seasons, have you seen on the television news scenes of plane cancellations and people stranded somewhere far from home in miserable conditions at airports due to bad weather? Who wants to waste their holiday time stuck in an airport?
If you vacation locally here at home, yes, you might have to fight with a bit of traffic, but you won’t have to spend hours at the airport, in an airplane seat with no leg room, or stranded for a day or more somewhere because of wind or snow storms. Also if holidaying here at home, you know when rush hours are and you can work around that. Or if you stay at a hotel near where you want to explore, you might not need to fight traffic at all.
Helping the Environment
And finally, a fourth additional reason for vacationing close to home is the environment. Travelling long distances burns fuel which creates emissions that contribute to global warming. Your one single flight to Hawaii isn’t going to impact climate, but everyone’s travel habits collectively do.
In May 2018 the UK’s Independent ran an article entitled Tourism is Responsible for Nearly One Tenth of the World’s Carbon Emissions. In it they point out that “tourism accounts for around 8 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions … according to a new study … in the scientific journal Nature Climate Change.” And air travel is the worst offender!
According to Offsetters.ca, which is a local Vancouver-based carbon offset provider, one return economy flight to Puerto Vallarta Mexico generates the equivalent of 1.32 tonnes of CO2 emissions. Driving 3058 km (and 30 hours) in a 2010 Dodge Caravan from Vancouver to San Francisco and back, meanwhile, results in the equivalent of about 0.72 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
For the above reasons, travelling long distances isn’t good for the environment. (And sitting stationary in a car or cramped airplane seat probably isn’t good for the body either.) So the closer to home you vacation, the happier planet earth will be!
For ideas on how to buy local and support local click 7 Ways for 7 Days on the BC Buy Local website.
Travelling the world is an amazing experience. That’s why we encourage tourists from out of town to come explore Vancouver, and that’s why we like travelling too. Holidaying abroad has lots of costs, however, and vacationing locally has lots of benefits.
So the next time you plan to book a trip, and want to explore a world-class destination, think seriously about staying close to home and exploring the Lower Mainland. You’ll learn about the place you live and discover why millions of tourists fly thousands of kilometres to spend time here. You’ll also save money, support the local economy, save time and benefit the environment.
As much as you can, buy local and vacation local! It’s a win, win, win!
Other articles and resources that might be of interest include the following:
- BC Buy Local Week
- LocoBC (an organization that promotes locally-owned businesses and which Vancouver’s Best Places is proud to be a member of)
- Vancouver on a Budget
- StayVancouverHotels.com (a locally-based website that offers great deals and bonus perks for booking stays at downtown Vancouver hotels)
- Lower Mainland Parks and Places in Nature
- Vancouver’s Top 100 Places
- Vancouver for Children
- History and Culture in the Lower Mainland
- Lower Mainland Festivals and Events
- Lower Mainland Entertainment Coupon Book (a resource that offers 2-for-1 deals at hundreds of stores, restaurants, tourist attractions and other places of interest)
- Vancouver Farmers Markets
- Lower Mainland Restaurants