Destination Quebec City will launch a new initiative in February to help hotel and restaurant owners in the Quebec City area. The $3 million investment is aimed at attracting visitors to their own region.
Throughout the month of February, Quebec City area residents will be eligible for 50% off nights at participating hotels in the region. Each night booked will also qualify for $25 off at a restaurant.
"You can add more nights and still get the 50% and $25 each time. A person who wants, for example, to book two nights, would have two discounts of 50% and $50 in restaurant credits", explains Robert Mercure, Director of Destination Québec.
Severely Impacted Industry
The tourism industry has been hit hard by pandemic and sanitary measures. The economic losses are significant.
"In the month of January, we normally run at 50 to 55% occupancy. We are currently at around 10% occupancy. In February, we are usually around 60% occupancy and we want to fill the hotels as much as possible," said Robert Mercure.
The initiative is applauded by the Quebec City Area Hotel Association (AHRQ). "It's really a good idea. It will certainly help our members who are struggling with the current situation," says André Roy, AHRQ's general manager.
This new initiative is inspired by another program, launched last November by Destination Québec and targeted at the entire province.
Visitors from other regions of Quebec are entitled to a second free night. The program, which was supposed to end at the end of December, has just been extended.
"We generated more than 31,000 overnight stays between November 1 and December 21. That's a real success. We have just re-launched the program until the end of February," announced Robert Mercure.
The 50% discount offered to residents of the Quebec City area is financed by the lodging tax fund and grants from the Quebec ministries of Economy and Tourism.
André Roy is convinced that the investment is justified and that it will benefit more than just hotel and restaurant owners.
"Lodging is always the biggest expense on a vacation. If you spend a night in a hotel, you will probably eat in a restaurant. You might also go to a little store or do an outdoor activity. Everyone benefits," he says.
So far, about 40 hotels are participating in the new program. Robert Mercure estimates that there will be more, especially because of a large advertising campaign that will be done to promote the initiative.