Message from the Registrar
It’s hard to believe that fall is well underway. Like many businesses, TICO is now focused on a return to the workplace, as we become accustomed to working in a ‘post-pandemic’ world.
On a global level, Canada along with the rest of the world, continues to adapt and respond to disruptions caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, supply chain bottlenecks, labour shortages across so many different industries, and now, record inflation not seen in 40 years.
The bottom line is that Canada and the rest of the world now brace for a slower economy and possible global recession in 2023.
Despite bleak projections, there is always a silver lining. Ontario’s travel industry has been roaring back, gaining momentum as new innovations, new product, and excited markets welcome travellers after a long period of relative seclusion. The recovery gains momentum With travel restrictions now removed, the unleashed pent-up consumer demand widely reported over the summer was apparent to all.
Registrant sales began to grow again, with some registrants reporting booking levels similar to or even exceeding 2019.
Keeping in mind that 2018 and 2019 were among the best years ever for the Ontario travel industry, registrants’ sales were much stronger over the summer months, reflecting growing momentum.
While consumers are increasingly travelling again, the industry must consider the ongoing labour shortages and potential recession anticipated in 2023.
Funding model review In September, we announced the launch of a comprehensive review of TICO’s current funding framework and fee model. The review includes all fees levied by TICO, including the Compensation Fund.
We know this funding review is a priority for the industry and we are open to all ideas to modernize TICO’s funding framework. We are committed to a collaborative approach, working with all stakeholders. You can read more about the review on the next page.
Looking forward The economic environment remains challenging for all businesses. With high inflation, increasing interest rates and general uncertainty, these conditions suggest a cautious and conservative plan for the coming New Year.
At TICO, we will continue to focus on our core regulatory initiatives, looking for opportunities to be creative, while delivering strong customer service.
Our recent education initiative, including the release of four new videos in support of current labour challenges facing the industry, is one example of where TICO is delivering a meaningful contribution to the travel sector.
We continue to make strides in digitizing our core processes that impact registrants. And, we remain active in our consumer awareness campaign to promote the value and benefits of booking through registered travel agents.
Of course, our commitment to a deep review of our funding framework will require a commitment by many to ensure success.
These past few years have demonstrated the incredible resiliency of the travel sector and the people who work in it. Equally, our team at TICO remains passionate and committed to the important mandate we serve across this province. On behalf of everyone at TICO, I wish you well as we ready ourselves for another busy winter season!
Richard Smart Registrar & CEO