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Newsletter of the Tourism Industry Association of Newfoundland and Labrador


Winter 2013

The Tourism Industry Association of Canada’s Tourism Congress took place in Gatineau in November and was attended by some 350 tourism stakeholders from all across Canada. The Tourism Congress, much like HNL’s own provincial conference happening in St. John’s from February 20th to 22nd, 2013, is an annual venue for the leaders of tourism organizations to learn, network and develop strategies for advancing tourism goals. The Tourism Congress was co-chaired this year by Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador’s CEO, Carol-Ann Gilliard (right) and Gisele Danis, Vice-President of Marketing with Tourism Calgary. Joining Carol-Ann and Gisele in this picture taken during the Opening Ceremonies is TIAC’s President and CEO, David F. Goldstein.   Photo Credit: Denis Drever

Can you ever be smart enough?

Carol-Ann Gilliard CEO, Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador

As many of you know, I recently finished up university for the second time, having spent the past five years working parttime towards a second degree. If you have ever worked full-time, attended school part-time, while still trying to be a good parent, partner, family member and friend, you understand the commitment it takes to stick to such a gruelling pace for half a decade.

Making the commitment to the schedule that I did is nothing unlike or greater than most of you do everyday, even if the load in your backpack is different than mine. Many of you put in long hours, perform multiple responsibilities, volunteer, sacrifice free time and weekends and juggle a great many balls to make sure everything keeps turning in your world. While there are often struggles, the pace becomes manageable and you learn as you go how to navigate to make things work. I don’t know about you but there were several times in the past five years that I threw down my laptop, slammed shut my books and whined to anyone who would listen ‘why I needed to do all this anyway’. Incidentally, if you take away the laptop and replace it with a pencil case, this scene was repeated decades ago when I was going through high school and university the first time. But unlike attending high school and university the first time, going back to school this time was purely my choice – it was not compulsory for government or Mom and Dad. I often asked myself, during the frustrating times, why I decided to go back to school again and I have come up with a few answers. First, some may call me a nerd but when I was growing up in St. Jacques, all those years ago, my favourite time of the year was September. Not because it was my birthday month, but because it was in September that we started another year of school. There was nothing on the face of the earth more exciting to me than getting all those new school supplies. Nerd? You be the judge! I like to think I’m low maintenance - but the point is that I actually like going to school. September is still my favourite time of year. Second, coming from a small community to attend university the first time, I found the schoolwork a great deal heavier than I was used to in high school so my head had to be pretty much in the books the whole time. The culture shock of moving from a very rural community to great, big ‘town’ was a bit of a trip as well. I mean, St. John’s had intersections with stoplights and all! And also being from a rural community far from town, it was the first time that I had to live away from home and be fully independent. So with working part-time, keeping up with schoolwork and figuring out how to navigate Metrobus schedules, I was distracted from truly absorbing the university experience the first time.

Winter 2013

One of the phrases that I have heard people say over the years is “I don’t know what I don’t know” so third and most importantly, the reason I


committed to going back to school was because I felt there were things that I needed to know. Thomas Sowell, an American economist, theorist, philosopher and author, said, “it takes considerable knowledge just to realize the extent of your own ignorance”…so I guess I get a checkmark on that? Knowledge and experience makes you smarter and I wanted more of both. I wanted to know more of what I didn’t know. Being empowered with knowledge and experience enables you to make the right choices for the right reasons in your work and life. Knowledge and experience is power; the more equipped you are with both, the more confident you will be in your ability to achieve your goals. “When you know better, you do better.” - Maya Angelou. That doesn’t mean you won’t make mistakes, but at least you will be more equipped to recognize and deal with them. As big believers in learning, HNL takes great effort to do everything possible to empower our members with the knowledge and experience you need to achieve your goals. Just by being a member of HNL, you are inserting yourself into the tourism network where you will gain a great deal of both. The next big opportunity for you to gain more knowledge and experience is HNL’s Conference coming up in St. John’s in February (more on Pages 8 and 9). Learning is one of the pillars on which we build our Conference and, for many of our members, it is one of the rare opportunities to learn so much in such a short period of time. At the Conference, the leaders of tourism organizations from all over the province will be immersed in this intense annual learning and networking gathering because they understand the value of the knowledge they will gain and the experiences they will have. HNL’s Conference is a two and a half day affair. Nonetheless, for many operators, even attending for this length of time presents challenges. I can tell you, if you do make the commitment and engage in active learning by attending the conference, what you get out of it in the end will be worth it. At HNL, our goal is to foster learning…giving members the knowledge and experience you need, providing a process for learning that engages you with the largest gathering of like-minded tourism peers and an environment where you can make relationships and decisions that will help enhance the way you do things. Can you ever be smart enough? I don’t know. But it turns out that once you engage in intense learning, it apparently becomes addictive…I’m already debating what new skill I will try to learn next. My son thinks it should be ‘Minecraft’ and my husband thinks it should be patience! Whatever my choice, it will have to wait until the HNL team has planned all of the details for our Conference so that it presents for you a valuable opportunity to gain both knowledge and experience. I hope to see you there…backpack, pencil case and all!

Opening our Arms

Darlene Thomas Chair, Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador

Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador will celebrate 30 years as the provincial tourism association this year. Over the three decades, HNL has seen tremendous change in the industry and the past few years have produced perhaps the most. I have written before about the importance of embracing change. How we as industry associations and organizations, change to better serve and accommodate what our industry operators need will have real impacts on our ability to achieve the goals we are striving for.

For the past 30 years, HNL has evolved as an association that hangs its hat on three solid mandates: Advocacy & Communications, Skills & Knowledge Development, and Membership & Networking. It’s what we do and we do it well, as evidenced by our strong stakeholder relations that allow HNL a voice with many industry influencing public and private partners. However, HNL has always acknowledged that we cannot be all things to all people, so, when the Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism Board took on the task of aligning the industry and solidifying the roles of our provincial Destination Management Organizations (DMO’s), HNL could not have been more supportive, knowing that these organizations are so needed to perform regional level activities. But, it’s time to take our alignment to the next level. While HNL and the DMO’s have been working together behind the scenes on the NL Tourism Board and various partnership initiatives, you will see our new level of commitment to one another clearly outlined in the new pages of this edition of Tourism Times. Our joint commitment to partnership means that we all acknowledge our joint commitment to industry. And, while our roles may be different, by working together we can deliver a level of industry service that uses economies of scale, and scope, to better play on our individual organizational strengths. There is one tourism industry in Newfoundland and Labrador, so, there should be one tourism network, regardless of which region you operate in or cater to, we are all in this together. Our hope is that all if players receive the same information from the best possible sources, more opportunities will formulate in the best interest of our operators and therefore, the industry. This is what we are trying to achieve, for you.

changing our format for Tourism Times. Tourism Times has been produced for 30 years and is the only tourism industry magazine of its type to be circulated to all tourism operators in Newfoundland and Labrador. What better place to start our information integration than this! So, beginning with this very issue, we will be including updates from our partners, including each of our provincial DMO’s, the Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism Board and the Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation. This is your new opportunity to become completely engrossed, and engaged, in learning more about how everyone is working for you. HNL has always sought industry feedback but this new format for circulating information will ensure that each and every tourism operator in this province, whether you are a member of any particular organization or not, has the ability to feed into the other organizations that are impacting the future of tourism. We have all heard of Uncommon Potential (Vision 2020) and guess what, 2020 isn’t that far away! As a partner in Uncommon Potential, we have to make sure the fire is still hot and we continue to motivate each other to make strategic decisions that are feasible and in line with our ultimate goal of doubling tourism revenues by 2020. This means listening to industry, learning from industry, and working with each other. I cannot tell you how refreshing it has been working on the process of industry alignment. In the past few years, there has been a more focused approach to the roles and responsibilities of tourism organizations and while some have been more challenging to execute, I have been encouraged at every turn. In a time of fiscal restraint, redefining priorities, both operational and financial, has been an absolute necessity. How can we preach to operators about redefining your business practices if we are not willing to turn the microscope on ourselves as well? So, I can safely say, we are all in this with you. So, what does this mean? It means that HNL and our partners on the NL Tourism Board have opened our arms to embrace a more fundamental partnership with our industry organizations and we are asking the same thing of all of you. As you read on, if you are not aware of what HNL, the DMO’s, the NL Tourism Board or TCR is doing or can do for you, I urge you to find out more. We are a large province, diverse in every way possible and it is virtually impossible to create a one-stop-shop for tourism, but, by creating a more integrated network, we are making every effort to ensure that the support industry needs is available. We are all working towards the one goal and it goes far beyond 2020, but for now, we are within reach, so, let’s reach! And while we’re at it, let’s open our arms!

Winter 2013

Our first step in this process is the integration and dissemination of information. Daunting words but simply said it means that we are

Atlantic Canada Showcase 2012 delegates


NL Hosts Atlantic Canada Showcase! Newfoundland and Labrador proudly hosted Atlantic Canada Showcase (ACS) from September 30 to October 2, 2012 in St. John’s, NL. The biennial event has rotated among the four Atlantic Provinces since 1994 and brings together national and international buyers to provide them with an opportunity to experience the Atlantic Canada product.

Winter 2013

As a buyer-seated marketplace designed especially for the group tour, F.I.T. and specialty travel industry, ACS 2012 was a unique opportunity to showcase tourism products and services from all four Atlantic Provinces to both national and international buyers. ACS 2012 also provided the host, Newfoundland and Labrador, a great opportunity to further highlight many of the best venues in the city and province and involved


tourism stakeholders from all regions. In total, 53 buyer representatives from tour companies participated in ACS 2012, meeting with over 150 tourism operator sellers from the Atlantic Canada region. At ACS 2012, 36.4% of buy­­ers and 38.6% of sellers indicated that they booked business during the event. In addition, 100% of buyers said that it was very or somewhat likely that they will be doing future business with ACS 2012 sellers (84.8% very likely) and 97% of sellers said it was very or somewhat likely that they will do future business with ACS 2012 buyers (57% very likely). Here are a few pictures of the events that took place during ACS 2012.

Buyer and seller at ACS 2012

Delegates catch up in the delegate lounge

Delegates discuss the finer points

Delegates conducting business

Delegates participate in the Ugly Stick Contest during NL night

Performers take a bow during Atlantic Canada Night

The Welcome Wagon at NL Night at The Rooms

HNL Board Members Todd Wight and Rick Stanley

Tourism Technology Team

AIR MILES Reward Program C hoose

ACS 2012 buyers and sellers

Winter 2013



The New Face of emerit® Because Great Service is Good for Business There have been some big changes to emerit Tourism Training and Certification! Aside from the new brand image and the new and improved website, there are new products for various tourism occupations and new revitalized processes for industry certification. Training and certification programs from emerit are still recognized as the best training resources available to the tourism and hospitality industry. Developed by industry, for industry, emerit delivers the collective expertise of Canadian and international tourism professionals. What this means for you: it’s never been easier to get the best training programs for your staff. A well trained staff leads to better business, and certification means your staff has the expertise to perform at their best. Products include: • National Occupational Standards • Workbooks • eBooks • Online Training • Trainer’s Guides • Professional Certification and Specialist Certification Professional Certification encompasses many of the occupations previously grouped as Tourism Certified Professional or front line occupations. The majority of these occupations are entry level and customer service based.

Winter 2013

It is a simple two step process to achieve this valued industry credential: 1. Pass the occupational knowledge exam 2. Meet the required number of workplace experience hours (varies per occupation)


Professional Certification is available for the following occupations: • Banquet Server • Bartender • Housekeeping Room Attendant • Event Coordinator • Food & Beverage Server • Freshwater Angling Guide • Front Desk Agent • Hunting Guide • Line Cook • Reservations Sales Agent • Retail Sales Associate • Sales Manager • Supervisor • Taxicab and Limousine Driver • Travel Counsellor • Tour Director • Tour Guide • Tourism Visitor Information Counsellor • Wine Server Specialist Certification is a new credential that recognizes competence in more advanced or management level occupations. The Specialist Certification process is as follows: 1. Successfully complete a multiple-choice exam to test one’s knowledge of the occupation 2. Obtain required number of hours of workplace experience 3. Successfully pass the performance evaluation 4. Recertification to maintain credential (every 3 years) Specialist Certification is available for the following occupations: • Director of Housekeeping • Event Manager • Event Management Professional (International) • Food & Beverage Manager • Heritage Interpreter • Tourism Trainer As you can see, putting yourself amongst the ranks of the industry’s best has never been easier! If you have questions about any emerit training products or professional/specialist certification, please contact HNL’s Certification Coordinator, Krista Sweetland at or (709) 722-2000 ext. 235.


Winter 2013

Presenting Partners:

Hosted by:

the format

The sessions will cover a broad range of travel and tourism issues: • Domestic policy challenges • International travel trends • Export readiness • National marketing strategy


Bring forward your ideas, questions and concerns in this unprecedented meeting series. The town hall format ensures your voice and your concerns are heard.

Date: Wednesday, February 20, 2013 Location: Holiday Inn St. John’s Government Centre Hotel


Senior Vice-President, Marketing Strategy and Communications Canadian Tourism Commission

Greg Klassen

David Goldstein

President and Chief Executive Officer, Tourism Industry Association of Canada

featured speakers

click on Events or This event isvisit free; however, participantsand are encouraged to register. For more information, visit  call 613-238-3883!

Schedule:            8:30 a.m.      Registration and Coffee 9:00 a.m.     Opening Remarks 9:15 a.m.     TIAC – Key National Issues 10:15 a.m. Refreshment Break 10:30 a.m. CTC Presentation 11:30 a.m.   Q&A 11:50 a.m.   Closing To register orRemarks for more information, please

Bruce Philp

Renowned author and marketing maven behind the rapid rise of ING Direct

Tourism and hospitality business operators, tourism marketers, travel industry employees, government stakeholders, and local media are all welcome and encouraged to participate in this open dialogue.

This interactive session will provide you with unparalleled insight on how TIAC and the CTC are working to grow the visitor economy. This open forum will also provide a unique opportunity to share your ideas on how we can make Canada’s tourism industry more competitive.

The Tourism Industry Association of Canada and the Canadian Tourism Commission cordially invite you to take part in a very special Tourism Town Hall session near you.

tourism town hall



Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism Town Hall


In 2013, Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador will mark its 30th Anniversary as the provincial tourism association! Join us in marking the occasion and celebrating everything the tourism industry has achieved at HNL’s 2013 Conference and Trade Show taking place at the Delta St. John’s Hotel and Conference Centre from Wednesday, February 20th to Friday, February 22nd, 2013. (Please note the conference starts Wednesday this year, not Thursday)

CONFERENCE 2013 Wednesday, February 20th to Friday, February 22nd, 2013 Delta St. John’s Hotel and Conference Centre

In 2013, we’ll celebrate 30 years of Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador! Join HNL’s leaders as we celebrate the successes of the tourism industry. HNL has a renewed focus for the 2013 Conference! After feedback from you, conference participants and stakeholders, we are ready to deliver an event that will give everyone something to talk about, and think about. With more practical sessions and motivational speakers, HNL’s Conference 2013 will provide leaders of the industry with inspiration to do more in their own businesses and the tools to make it happen! Visit to register now

Winter Fall 2012 2013

For more information on HNL’s Conference 2013, please contact: Susie Greene Membership Coordinator E: P: 709-722-2000, ext: 224 TF: 1-800-563-0700, ext: 224


With keynote speakers and guest panellists that will ensure everyone takes something away, HNL’s 2013 Conference will also take a look back to recognize the contribution of all of our tourism partners and more importantly, how the industry can continue to improve our competitiveness. To register or for more information about HNL’s 2013 Conference program, please visit,

Register now for HNL’s 2013 Conference and Trade Show and lend your voice to how the industry moves forward.

Celebrating 30 years at HNL’s 2013 Conference and Trade Show! d... a e c n e r e f n o c HNL’s early we’ve come! look how far

To mark HNL’s 30th Anniversary as the provincial tourism association, HNL is building our timeline on Facebook. Do you have an interesting story or comment that can help fill in some of HNL’s and our industry’s best moments in the last 30 years? Like HNL on Facebook and help us build our history from the ground up! Below are a few pictures of key steps along our way...

1996: HNL’s first webpage!

Who was Lotus Notes?




The fir s the co t Doug Whe ver of eler Aw HNL’s first ed ard presen ta ition o f The U tion is mbrell a.


Winter 2013

Touris m $875 m is still big b usine illion more than $ dollars in e ss generatin 78.8 b c illion in onomic act g more than ivit econo mic ac y in NL and tivity n ationa lly.




Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism Board Update Submitted by: Lisa McDonald, Tourism Board Manager Over three years ago Uncommon Potential: A Vision for Newfoundland and Labrador (Vision 2020) was released. As the tourism industry’s longterm vision and plan, Vision 2020 was developed to provide a framework to guide both Government and Industry to work together to advance tourism in Newfoundland and Labrador. Vision 2020’s goal is to double annual tourism revenues to 1.6 billion by 2020. In place since 2009, the NL Tourism Board’s role is to advise on the strategic implementation of Vision 2020. Specifically, the Board oversees the tourism industry’s collective and determined commitment to the seven strategic directions identified through Vision 2020, while the partners work together to implement the programs and processes that will make the Vision a reality. The NL Tourism Board, as a collective, has been making significant efforts towards reaching Vision 2020’s goal. Currently, the Board is leading the effort to elevate the quality of tourism services and attractions available in the province. To this end, a new Tourism Assurance Plan (TAP) has been developed. TAP is the first step in providing assurance to travelers about the quality of tourism services and attractions being promoted in the province.

4. Must deliver actual experiences or services being promoted and/or offered to the consumer. 5. Must be in good standing with Tourism Assurance Plan’s complaints procedure. Newfoundland and Labrador’s TAP is designed to elevate traveler confidence in local tourism services and attractions by ensuring that all organizations promoted in Newfoundland and Labrador meet these common minimum standards by May 2014. Currently the Board and its partners are speaking with sector and specialty groups to discuss the TAP program and gather feedback. Further announcements and information regarding the program will take place during HNL’s Annual Conference and Trade Show taking place February 20-22 at the Delta St. John’s Hotel and Conference Centre. In addition to this, a webinar series will be taking place early in the New Year for tourism operators and owners to learn more about the program. For more information on TAP please contact: Lisa McDonald, Tourism Board Manager, 709.722.2000, ext. 227 or

New Representatives appointed to the NL Tourism Board TAP involves five common minimum standards that are aimed at promoting tourism organizations that provide quality travel experiences and assisting tourism services and attractions improve the way they operate. In the future, these standards must be met in order for tourism services and attractions to participate in provincial marketing and development initiatives, qualify for membership in Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador (HNL) and participate in partnership/membership activities with regional Destination Management Organizations (DMOs). The five common minimum standards are:

The NL Tourism Board is pleased to welcome two new Board members to its team in November 2012: Clyde Wells and Bill Grandy. Clyde is the owner and operator of Skipper Ben’s in Cupids and joins the Board in his role as Vice-Chair of the Eastern Destination Management Organization (EDMO). As Director, Community Development of ACOA NL, Bill sits on the Board as a representative from ACOA. Both new members bring a wealth of knowledge and experience that will provide helpful perspectives in moving the Vision forward.

1. The ability to communicate and receive messages from customers by telephone, email and an online presence; and at a minimum, accept credit and/or debit card payment and respond to inquiries on a daily basis. 2. Possess and maintain valid licenses, permits and all other regulatory requirements to operate. 3. Maintain current and sufficient levels of liability insurance. Proof of insurance to be provided upon request.

The Tourism Board would also like to recognize its outgoing Chair, Stan Cook, Jr. Thanks are extended to Stan for his time and contribution over the past three years. He has played a key role in the development of the Tourism Board and has provided an unwavering commitment to Vision 2020 and growing the tourism industry in his tenure as Chair. The Board looks forward to seeking his advice and working with him on future tourism directives. A new Chair appointment by the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Recreation is anticipated for early 2013.

BIG ERICS INC. 99 Blackmarsh Road P.O. Box 6090 St. John’s, NL A1C 5X8 TEL: 709-579-2151 FAX: 709-576-6866

Winter 2013




The NL Tourism Board is the first of its kind in Newfoundland and Labrador; a true collaborative partnership with the sole focus of looking at the industry as a whole and taking a collective approach to guiding the industry. Joining together forces from public and private sectors, the NL Tourism Board is comprised of fourteen members from: •H  ospitality Newfoundland and Labrador (HNL) • The five Destination Management Organizations (DMOs) - Destination St. John’s - Eastern Destination Management Organization - Adventure Central Newfoundland - Go Western Newfoundland - Destination Labrador • The Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation (TCR) •T  he Department of Innovation, Business and Rural Development (IBRD) • Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA)

Research Corner Submitted by: The Tourism Research Division of the Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation The Tourism Research Division of the Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation is responsible for providing high quality and timely research information in support of planning and decision making. As part of this mandate, the division maintains a comprehensive statistical database that permits the monitoring of various key statistical indicators for tourism in Newfoundland and Labrador. The division also undertakes primary research and participates as a partner in projects conducted by various organizations. The division is committed to communicating its research, analyses and other information and we are excited about the opportunity to share the latest results through Tourism Times’ RESEARCH CORNER. In the coming issues we will take a closer look at the results of our own research as well as research findings regarding tourism issues from other sources. To start off our RESEARCH CORNER in this edition of Tourism Times, here are a couple of points on how the US dollar exchange rate is impacting travel by Canadians. While it is obvious to travellers and operators

alike that a strong Canadian dollar hampers US and overseas inbound travel, it is also assumed that it would stimulate Canadians to seek travel destinations allowing them to save on travel costs. Interestingly, an analysis “Measuring the Loonie’s Impact on Canadian Tourism” published recently by the Conference Board of Canada concluded that “a 1 per cent increase in the value of the Canadian dollar leads to an increase of 0.45 to 0.5 per cent in overnight trips to the United States, and to a 0.85 to 0.9 per cent increase in same-day trips.” Does this suggest, though, that in turn Canadians are ‘sacrificing’ domestic trips in favour of travel to the US? The Conference Board’s analysis of domestic tourism demand found that “the impact of the Canada-US exchange rate on domestic tourism is minimal.” With the Canadian dollar continuing to hover around parity with the US dollar, this finding is good news for the province, as approximately 80% of Newfoundland and Labrador’s nonresident visitors are Canadian travellers. For more information, please visit our website at

2010 Newfoundland and Labrador Resident Travel Survey – RESULT HIGHLIGHTS In the fall of 2010, the Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation conducted a travel survey among residents of the province to investigate their travel motivations, attitudes and interests. The survey found that residents of the province are travellers: 77% indicated that they took at least one vacation trip over the past two years (including trips to out-of province destinations). Sixty-four percent of residents indicated that they took at least one vacation trip at home, with an average of 3.9 trips and an average length of 4.5 nights. Residents don’t appear to travel on impulse, with almost three in five travellers indicating that they research and plan their vacation trips. On average, residents start researching their trips 8 weeks in advance. Most frequently, residents use recommendations from friends and family to plan their trips or go online to check websites (other than and online reviews. Generally, residents prefer to make all their travel arrangements before they leave and are looking for deals and package offers.

When asked about their travel experiences in Newfoundland and Labrador, almost half of resident travellers (46%) reported that scenic touring was a key activity during their last NL vacation, while 36% went shopping and 27% reported going trail/wilderness hiking. Scenic touring, shopping and visiting family and friends were by far the top three trip motivators. Those who travelled in-province were highly satisfied with their experience and are also very likely to recommend the province as a vacation destination to others. To increase in-province travel among residents, those who have travelled here in the past appear to offer the most potential. Keeping in mind the time frame for advance travel planning, facilitating the ease of making travel arrangements, providing travel offers that are perceived as “good deals” and addressing the interest in taking multiple shorter trips (rather than one long vacation) among a portion of residents are key to achieving growth in the resident travel market. For more information about resident travel, check out the complete report at TCR’s Tourism Statistics website stats/index.html.

Telephone interviews were conducted with 1,800 residents aged 18 or older, with the sample proportionally representing residents of the St. John’s area, urban and rural communities. Urban communities were defined as those having a population of adults aged 18 or older of 4,000 or more. Focus was on pleasure, leisure and vacation travel.

Winter 2013



From The Regions Submitted by: Rhonda Hutton Director of Marketing Destination St. John’s

“Socially” Acceptable

Adventure Central presents first annual Bergy Awards

Destination St. John’s (DSJ) asks two questions when considering marketing initiatives: will it meet the corporate objective of attracting more business to the destination and does it align with the provincial and DSJ brands? One area of marketing that has everyone speaking a new language is social media. “Tweets”, “Likes”, and “Posts” are terms that have woven their way into our marketing plans. We must not lose sight, however, that the fundamentals remain the same and a tweet receives the same rigor as the decision to advertise in a print publication.   Does it meet our business objectives and fit with our brand?  When we retweet that Russell Crowe thinks we have the best drinking water in the world, you may be asking “why is that relevant?”  Hold that thought.

Great operators deserve to be recognized, and that’s exactly what Adventure Central Newfoundland did during its annual general meeting on November 20.

Social media channels allow those travellers who have experienced the destination or are experiencing the destination in real time to be brand ambassadors. They can help attract new customers and convert prospects. We post or tweet things that we think are important to the destination that reflects our brand statement, “Colourful Characters, Colourful Experiences and Colourful Encounters.” Having a brand voice and engaging in social media activities give DSJ credibility. When meeting planners are considering St. John’s, they can look to our Facebook page and Twitter account and see what is important to us. A quick scan and they will see that coastal vistas, walking trails, whales and birds, exceptional culinary products, award winning hotels, funky retailers, festivals, Convention Centre news, artisans, and yes, that Russell Crowe thinks St. John’s has the best drinking water in the world, are important to us.   It’s quirky, it’s colourful and a global movie star likes us. Of course we are going to share that. And clean drinking water falls right in step with provincial “Fresh Air” campaign. Visitors to our social media channels see what is being said about us. It is the only marketing medium that allows you to claim “we are fabulous,” without having to say anything at all. Your followers are doing the work for you. We are cognizant of the power of social media in today’s marketing mix.   We get to join in the conversation and in many cases, start the conversation. We are becoming “friends”, not strangers, with prospects. We’d all rather do business with someone whom we are familiar. It’s about relationships. Building relationships is the beginning of the sales cycle and we are all about closing the sale. Social media is not superfluous to the marketing plan. It is an integral part of helping us achieve our business objective and it should be yours as well.

Winter 2013

We would like our marketing partners to engage with us and our followers and, in turn, together we can grow the base. Lauren Saunders, Marketing Coordinator will be hosting Twitter Thursday’s and Facebook Fridays for our partners. The groups will be small, maximum 8 people. Bring your tablets, iPhones, BB or laptops and get ready to tweet with cool hash tags and post with uploads and tags. If you do not understand that sentence you need to attend these January sessions! E-mail to register. Space is limited, so contact Lauren soon.


Submitted by: Janice Goudie Manager of Travel Trade & Media Relations Adventure Central Newfoundland

If you would like to become a marketing partner of Destination St. John’s or have any questions you can contact me at rhutton@destinationstjohns. com.

Four operators received the organizations first annual Bergy Awards – an award designed to honor Central tourism operators in the areas of outstanding service, innovative product development, a commitment to cultural development, and being an outstanding tourism ambassador for Central Newfoundland. The Digital Marketer of the Year award is designed to highlight a variety of achievements in the area of marketing using technology. Barry Rogers and Carol Anne Hayes of Iceberg Quest Ocean Tours received this award based on their immediate goal of developing a strong, meaningful social media presence on multiple platforms. David and Christine Boyd of Prime Berth Fishing Museum in Twillingate received the Innovator of the Year Award which recognizes an individual or company that is doing things in a new way and is having a positive impact on the tourism industry in Central Newfoundland. The Anchor Inn Hotel and Suites, Twillingate has a mantra that an accommodation is more than just a place to rest your head at the end of the day. It is a place which helps you interpret and experience your tourism destination. It’s for this reason Deborah Bourden and Wilma Hartmann were bestowed the Accommodator of the Year award for dedication to quality service, a commitment to the tourism industry and displays of such attributes as warmth, hospitality, personality, outstanding service and dedication. And last but not least, Adventure Central Newfoundland presented the Pinnacle Award: Tourism Ambassador of the Year to recognize an individual or organization who gives selflessly of their time and energy to champion the interests of the tourism industry. The Beaches Heritage Centre in Eastport was this year’s recipient for its dedication to the promotion and preservation of the natural and cultural heritage of the Eastport Peninsula and all of Newfoundland.

Adventure Central Newfoundland recently handed out its first annual Bergy Awards for digital marketing, innovation, accommodation and being a tourism ambassador. The respective winners were (l to r) Barry Rogers and Carol Anne Hayes of Iceberg Quest, David and Christine Boyd of Prime Berth, Deborah Bourden of Anchor Inn, and Yvette Mahoney and Kathy Hodder of The Beaches Heritage Centre.

Submitted by: Randy Letto Executive Director Destination Labrador

“Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall – Western’s Got It All!”

The Changing Face of Destination Management

Since 2009, the Western Destination Management Organization and their partnering organizations and volunteer groups have been heavily involved in the planning and delivery of a number of Season Extension efforts throughout Western Newfoundland. We are all extremely pleased with the successes on the ground that have been achieved so far and are looking forward to our most successful Season Extension effort ever in 2013. At the time of submission (late November 2012), here are the Festivals and Events we are directly involved with for the coming year.

This past year marks the first for Destination Labrador as a Destination Management Organization, although the staff and the Board have worked diligently to address many tourism development priorities beyond marketing for many years now. On reflection, we are certainly benefiting from innovative marketing partnerships with Tourism Culture and Recreation yet mindful of the need for more capacity with respect to the product development and market readiness issues and challenges. New marketing partnerships, new market research, and continued market development leadership are great examples of a strong public/private partnership that brings real benefit to industry and the end consumer. Much has been accomplished since the realignment of DMOs and the establishment of the Tourism Board. Specifically the realignment has generated new industry partnerships for the provincial tourism website, the travel guide, packages program, consumer shows and much more. For Destination Labrador, the first year of our marketing partnership programs leveraged considerable industry investment from 20 Labrador industry partners. While there is no fee charged to be a member of Destination Labrador, its pay-to-play marketing partnership program has certainly been well received by its marketing partners.

• Winter – SnowWest 2013 (January 31st-February 3, 8, 9th, • Spring Series - Trails, Tales and Tunes Festival 2013 (May 17-26th, trailstalestunes. ca) - Feather & Folk Festival 2013 (May 31st-June 9th, - Iceberg Festival 2013 (June 7-16th, • Fall – OctoberWest 2013 (mid-late October) Meetings have already begun with the SnowWest 2013 Planning Committee and an Event Coordinator has been hired. While it is a little premature to disclose the lineup of SnowWest events planned for this coming winter, the Western DMO is a-buzz with excitement for what promises to be the best Snow West winter celebration to date! Spring committees are already busy planning for the 2013 season as well as the introduction of our Fall 2013 Corner Brook and Humber Valley event – OctoberWest. For more information on any of these festivals and events in Western Newfoundland, please contact the Western DMO office direct at (709) 639-4787 or e-mail Brittany Taylor at brittany@gowesternnewfoundland. com.

Submitted by: Kathi Stacey, Executive Director Eastern Destination Management Organization

Moving Forward in 2013 The Eastern Destination Management Organization (EDMO) is completing its 2nd year of working with the Eastern NL Tourism community and our provincial partners to create a solid foundation for a successful organization, built from the ground up. The EDMO Board of Directors is committed to ensuring the organization works collaboratively with industry across all sectors. We were successful in developing our first business plan and are now ready to launch several exciting initiatives. In May, 2012 the EDMO Board welcomed a new staff member, Tourism Development Officer, Andrew Hiscock. Andrew was immediately off and running during the busy tourism season, working with colleagues at our various partnering agencies and with industry in our destination. We completed, in partnership with HNL and IBRD, a very successful Quality Service Training Retreat for front line staff,

While we are pleased with the progress on marketing, it is important to reflect often on destination development priorities that are vital to the successful growth of the tourism industry in Labrador. Each year Destination Labrador hosts an annual stakeholder consultation session to encourage industry participation and engagement and to get the necessary input into its development plans. Through this inclusive process, destination priorities have emerged around transportation needs related to the new Trans Labrador Highway, the inter-provincial ferry systems (North and South Coast), telecommunication challenges, sustainability of anchor attractions and general market readiness issues. Not unlike the need for innovation in marketing, meeting the destination development challenges depends on the strength of our industry participation and the necessary input in the development of a comprehensive destination plan. Left unaddressed, these important considerations will undermine any successes in the marketing and sale of our product.

hosted packaging workshops, developed a new membership incentive program for 2013, hosted 30 very successful media FAM tours to our region, and represented our destination at consumer and travel trade marketplaces. We are excited with the upcoming launch of our new website (, and are engaging the tourism community in Eastern NL in helping us build our persona within the amazing Newfoundland and Labrador brand. We invite you to visit our website and complete the persona survey. With so many fantastic experiences -- there is no shortage of inspiration and we need a name that properly reflects the dynamic, innovative, and amazing products and operators found in the Eastern and Avalon regions of the province. An important component of our organizational structure is our sub regional Tourism Advisory Committees (TASCs). They are our link to industry from both the private and not for profit sectors and will play a vital role in the important work of the EDMO. We look forward to another successful year working with our partners to implement our current initiatives. Your engagement is welcomed! The New Year will bring a new personality for the organization and will help continue its momentum and growth. Please feel free to contact us at anytime. Kathi Stacey, Executive Director,  or Andrew Hiscock, Tourism Development Officer, andrew.hiscock@easternnldmo. com. We look forward to hearing from you.

Winter 2013

Submitted by: Mark Lamswood Executive Director Go Western Newfoundland


Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador announces recipients of the 2012 Silver Anniversary Scholarship Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador is pleased to announce the 2012 HNL Silver Anniversary Scholarship recipients are Whitney Sharpe of Twillingate and Toni Kearney of Conche. Established in 2008 for HNL’s 25th anniversary year, the Silver Anniversary Scholarship is generously supported by the Boone family and the Sparkes family, two families with a long tradition of innovation and leadership within the tourism community.   Each year, two Silver Anniversary Scholarships are awarded to a dependant or employee of a current HNL member to assist with the cost of post-secondary education.  The scholarships are awarded based on educational goals and direction, academic performance, extra-curricular activities and community involvement.  Each recipient received a $1500 scholarship. WHITNEY SHARPE As a fifth year education student, Whitney Sharpe’s passion for her chosen career was inspired by her involvement in the Tutoring for Tuition program in high school. Now completing her final year of Primary/ Elementary Education at Memorial University of Newfoundland, Whitney has a goal of someday creating a classroom that is a positive experience for students, as well as somewhere they want to come to learn. Through her work with children at The Little Gym of St. John’s, Whitney not only gained valuable experience in gymnastics and sports skill-based fundamentals for young children, she also learned about the “three axioms of success” including one that she feels is particularly relatable to her own career goals - Always teach the best classes. While Whitney looks forward to motivating others, she also wants to continue her own education so she can grow professionally once she is responsible for a classroom of her own.

Winter 2013

Whitney believes that her involvement in activities outside the classroom have significantly contributed to her character. An active member of Sea Cadets, Allied Youth, Scouts and various high school sports teams, her involvement in such activities helped her develop leadership skills that can be transferred into many facets of her life. While Whitney has held various jobs, including several within the tourism community in Twillingate, she also understands the importance of giving freely of her time. Having spent time as a volunteer within the community scouting movement, the local hospital in Twillingate, and most recently with the Hoyles-Escasoni Complex in St. John’s, it is evident that Whitney has a true appreciation of what Newfoundland and Labrador hospitality is all about.


Whitney Sharpe is from Twillingate, NL and the daughter of Deborah Sharpe, owner and operator of the Whitsha Inn Bed and Breakfast in Twillingate.

TONI KEARNEY Toni Kearney is a first year student at Dalhousie University with plans of completing a Bachelor of Commerce degree where her long time interest in the everchanging world of business will make her a perfect fit. As a goal-oriented person, her desire to learn and her appreciation of the value of a dollar have already been an asset to Toni. Since the age of 15, Toni has been employed with Mayflower Inn and Adventures in Roddickton, working her way up from roles as a waitress and receptionist to her most current role as Marketing Assistant. Toni also worked part-time at the local fish plant and both jobs allowed her to gain valuable work experience as well as some much needed capital to put towards her education. While Toni’s dedication to her work life is obvious, so too is her commitment to academics, volunteer work and extra-curricular activities. Writing a bi-weekly column for the region’s newspaper, Toni also brought reading and writing to children. As host of a children’s book club and exercise team, Toni helped teach the key values of reading and writing as well as the necessity of daily exercise. An active member of the school council and a volunteer for school sporting events and fundraisers, Toni also found time to volunteer within the community. As a member of the Annual Garden Party, she fundraised for various organizations and her second love of politics led to her nomination to become NDP Youth Representative. Toni’s academic and personal achievements have allowed her to develop into a true leader and someone who is devoted to the betterment of society. The character she has already built will certainly give her a head start as she begins her university pursuits. Toni Kearney is from Conche, NL and was awarded the HNL Silver Anniversary Scholarship as an employee of long-time HNL member, Mayflower Inn and Adventures located in Roddickton, NL.

New Members

HNL Board of Directors Darlene Thomas Chair Greg Fleming Vice-Chair & Hotel/Motel Association Rex Avery Secretary/Treasurer John Dicks Director Peter Antle Director Annette Parsons Director Rick Stanley Director Todd Warren Director Todd Wight Director Cathy Lomond Restaurant Association Dion Finlay Bed & Breakfast Association (Full board contact information available at

Staff Listing Carol-Ann Gilliard Juanita Ford

Chief Executive Officer Manager, Workforce and Industry Development

Leslie Rossiter Manager, Policy and Communications Craig Foley Karen So

Manager, Technology Accountant

Susan Greene Membership Coordinator Krista Sweetland

Workforce Development Coordinator

Melissa Ennis

Workforce Development Coordinator

Scott Penney Training Coordinator Lisa McDonald

Tourism Board Manager

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Desktop Layout Image 4 Digital Printing & Design Inc. 1170 Topsail Road, Mount Pearl, NL A1N 5E8 T: 709-747-3850 E: W:

For all the latest up-to-date information and news, please visit Updated daily!

Salty Seas Cottages and Vacation Home 4 Church Road Brownsdale, NL A0B 1H0 Contact: Lloyd Froude 709-576-2711

Membership Benefits As 2012 comes to a close and we prepare for what’s ahead in 2013, have you considered how you can make the most of membership with Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador? Whether you are already a member of HNL or simply considering membership, this is a great time to see how you get even more from HNL! As the premier voice of the tourism industry for 30 years, HNL’s biggest strengths lie in three diverse areas: 1. Advocacy & Communications 2. Skills & Knowledge Development 3. Membership & Networking Focusing on these three mandates enables HNL to tackle industry issues with provincial and national decision makers, deliver the training you need to deliver the experiences customers have come to expect, and connect you, our fellow partners, with the rest of the provincial tourism industry.

Head Office 71 Goldstone Street (Suite 102) St. John’s, NL A1B 5C3 Tel: (709) 722-2000 Toll Free: 1-800-563-0700 Tourism Times is printed four times per year

West Side Charlies Head Office P.O. Box 23071, Churchill Square St. John’s, NL A1B 4J9 Contact: Wade Gravelle 709-738-4747

And, if that’s not enough, HNL, in collaboration with our valued partners, offer membership benefits that you can really sink your teeth into! • Free participation in HNL Webinars • Discounts on all HNL training programs • Membership pricing on all HNL events, including HNL’s Annual Conference and Trade Show • Special one-way fares from Provincial Airlines • Discounts from Budget and Avis Car Rentals • Credit Card discounted rate with Chase Paymentech • Special commercial rates from Superior Propane • Special group rates on home and auto insurance from Steers Insurance For more information on how HNL can work for you, please contact: Susie Greene HNL’s Membership Coordinator TF: 1-800-563-0700, ext: 224 P: 709-722-2000, ext: 222 E:

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Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador (HNL), the provincial Tourism Industry Association, is focused on advocacy, education, the adaptation of innovative technology and the promotion of a strong member network. Through forward thinking and fostering the growth of its members, HNL continues to be the leader of the tourism industry in the province. For information on membership, please contact

Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador is supported by the tourism industry and

Winter 2013

Tourism Times is a quarterly publication of Hospitality Newfoundland and Labrador (HNL). Opinions expressed by contributers and advertisers do not necessarily represent those of HNL.

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Tourism Times Winter 2013  

Newsletter of the tourism industry association of NL

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