Newswire

WestJet announces $100,000 commitment to help grow Indigenous Tourism across Canada

The Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada has significantly increased its wingspan after a $100,000, over three years, commitment with WestJet was announced today, during the International Indigenous Tourism Association Conference in Kelowna, Syilx Territory, BC (IITC).

"From launching Indigenous itineraries with WestJet this summer to announcing this invaluable multi-year commitment, WestJet is providing ITAC and our Indigenous tourism entrepreneurs endless opportunities to grow Indigenous tourism across Canada and showcase our experiences to global audiences," says Keith Henry, President and CEO of ITAC.

The strategic partnership will see WestJet and ITAC collaborate in the following areas:

  • Enhancing export readiness of selected Indigenous tourism businesses as they ready for international visitors.
  • Support the work and ambition of Indigenous youth entrepreneurs by supporting their participation at the IITC in 2020, 2021, 2022. 
  • Utilize WestJet's inflight entertainment system to tell the story of the range of Indigenous tourism experiences via its inflight entertainment system both domestically and internationally.
  • Collaborate on content and stories about Indigenous tourism to be featured in WestJet's inflight magazine throughout the year.
  • WestJet will become the official airline of the annual International Indigenous Tourism Conference which is held in new Canadian destinations every year.

"Bringing people together is what we do and in that spirit, we are partnering with Indigenous peoples, entrepreneurs and youth of Canada by sponsoring ITAC," said Arved von zur Muehlen, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer. "In doing so, we are proud to support Indigenous stories, history and culture across Canada and the globe."

WestJet is collaborating on global initiatives with ITAC and Indigenous leaders including the blessing of WestJet's first Boeing 787 Dreamliner and the airline's Dreamliner hangar. In early May 2019, WestJet partnered with Destination Canada and ITAC on an Indigenous tourism showcase in London, UK, to help grow opportunities and inform the global travel industry of the importance of indigenous tourism, a unique and developing sector of the Canadian tourism industry.