Chapter 2. Transportation
Tourism, freight, and resource industries such as forestry and mining sometimes compete for highways, waterways, and airways. It’s important for governments to engage with various stakeholders and attempt to juggle various economic priorities — and for tourism to be at the table during these discussions.
That’s why in 2015 the BC Ministry of Transportation released its 10-year plan, B.C. on the Move. Groups like the Tourism Industry Association of BC actively polled their members in order to have their concerns incorporated into the plan. These included highway signage and wayfaring, the future of BC Ferries, and urban infrastructure improvements. This is the report card from the first year of the 10-year plan: B.C. on the Move Report Card, 2015/16 [PDF].
This chapter has taken a brief look at one of the most complex, and vital, components of our industry. Chapter 3 covers accommodations and is just as essential.
- Ancillary revenues: money earned on non-essential components of the transportation experience including headsets, blankets, and meals
- Blue Sky Policy: Canada’s approach to open skies agreements that govern which countries’ airlines are allowed to fly to, and from, Canadian destinations
- Cruise BC: a multi-stakeholder organization responsible for the development and marketing of British Columbia as a cruise destination
- Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA): the world’s largest cruise industry trade association with representation in North and South America, Europe, Asia, and Australasia
- International Air Transport Association (IATA): the trade association for the world’s airlines
- Low-cost carrier (LCC): an airline that competes on price, cutting amenities and striving for volume to achieve a profit
- National Airports Policy (NAP): the 1994 policy that saw the transfer of 150 airports from federal control to communities and other local agencies, essentially deregulating the industry
- Open skies: a set of policies that enable commercial airlines to fly in and out of other countries
- Passenger load factor: a way of measuring how efficiently a transportation company uses its vehicles on any given day, calculated for a single flight by dividing the number of passengers by the number of seats
- Railway Safety Act: a 1985 Act to ensure the safe operation of railways in Canada
- Ridesharing apps: applications for mobile devices that allow users to share rides with strangers, undercutting the taxi industry
- Transportation Safety Board (TSB): the national independent agency that investigates an average of 3,200 transportation safety incidents across the country every year
- Ultra-low cost carrier (ULCC): an airline that competes on price, cutting amenities and striving for volume to achieve a profit
- When did the first paid air passenger take flight? What would you say have been the three biggest milestones in commercial aviation since that date?
- If a flight with 500 available seats carries 300 passengers, what is the passenger load factor?
- Why is it difficult for new airlines to take off in Canada?
- How did some of BC’s regional airports come into existence? What are some of the challenges they face today?
- How much economic activity is generated by YVR every year?
- What are the key differences between river cruises and ocean cruises? Who are the target markets for these cruises?
- Which cities attract more than 50% of the cruise traffic in Canada?
- What are the priorities for transportation infrastructure development as outlined in Vancouver’s Tourism Master Plan? What other transportation components would you include in your community’s tourism plan?
- What are some of the environmental impacts of the transportation sector? Name three. How might these be lessened?
Founded in 1977 by Joseph Sparling and Tom Wood, Air North is a regional airline providing passenger and cargo service between Yukon and destinations including BC, Alberta, and Alaska. In 2012, Air North surpassed one million passengers carried. Employing over 200 people, the airline is owned in significant part by the Vuntut Development Corporation, the economic arm of the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation (VGFN). In fact, one in 15 Yukoners owns a stake in the airline (Air North, 2015).
The ownership model has meant that economic returns are not always the priority for shareholders. As stated on its website, “the maximization of profit is not the number one priority,” as air service is a “lifeline” to the VGFN community. For this reason, service and pricing of flights is extremely important, as are employment opportunities.
Visit the corporate information portion of the Air North website and answer the following questions:
- What is the number one priority of Air North? How is the company structured to ensure it can meet its goals in this area?
- What does Air North consider to be its competitive advantage? How does this differ from other airlines?
- Describe the investment portfolio of the Vuntut Development Corporation. What types of companies does it own? Why might they have selected these types of initiatives?
- List at least three groups that have a stake in the airline. What are their interests? Where do their interests line up, and where do they compete?
- In your opinion, would this regional airline model work in your community? Why or why not?
Air North. (2015). Corporate information. Retrieved from www.flyairnorth.com/Experience/Corporate.aspx
Airbus. (2014). A380: Boost your profitability. Retrieved from http://www.airbus.com/aircraftfamilies/passengeraircraft/a380family/
Aviation Safety Network. (2012, March 4). Canadian Airlines International. Retrieved from http://aviation-safety.net/database/operator/airline.php?var=7022
Barrow, Becky. (2006, July 23). Flying on holiday ‘a sin’, says bishop. Daily Mail Online. Retrieved from http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-397228/Flying-holiday-sin-says-bishop.html
BC Ferries. (2014, June 17). BC Ferries proudly celebrates 50 years of Service. Retrieved from http://www.bcferries.com/about/history/history.html
BREA. (2013, March). The economic contribution of the international cruise industry in Canada 2012. Prepared for: North West & Canada Cruise Association, St. Lawrence Cruise Association, Atlantic Canada Cruise Association, Cruise BC. Exton, PA: Business Research & Economic Advisors, p. 1-5.
Briggs, Josh. (2008, May 1). How cruise ships work. Retrieved from http://adventure.howstuffworks.com/cruise-ship.htm
British Columbia Ministry of Transportation and Highways. (n.d.). Frontier to freeway: A short illustrated history of the roads in British Columbia. [PDF] Retrieved from http://www.th.gov.bc.ca/publications/frontiertofreeway/frontiertofreeway.pdf
British Columbia Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. (2012). Connecting with the world: An aviation strategy for British Columbia [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.th.gov.bc.ca/airports/documents/2012_AviationStrategy.pdf
Brustein, Joshua and Caroline Winter. (2014, February 28). If Uber is killing taxis, what explains the million-dollar medallions. Business Week. Retrieved from http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-02-28/if-uber-is-killing-taxis-what-explains-new-yorks-million-dollar-medallions
Canadian Geographic. (September/October 2000). Canadian aviation history. Retrieved from http://www.canadiangeographic.ca/magazine/so00/aviation_history.asp
Canadian Museum of Flight. (2014). The history of flight in BC. Retrieved from http://www.canadianflight.org/content/history-flight-bc-0
Canadian Press. (2013, December 12). BC Ferries crash lawsuit targets electronics firm. Huffpost British Columbia. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/12/22/bc-ferries-crash-lawsuit_n_4490818.html
CBC News. (2014, May 12.) MM&A Railway faces charges in Lac-Megantic disaster – Montreal – CBC News. Retrieved from http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/mm-a-railway-faces-charges-in-lac-mégantic-disaster-1.2640654
CLIA. (2014, January 16). The state of the cruise industry in 2014: Global growth in passenger numbers and product offerings. Retrieved from http://www.cruising.org/regulatory/news/press_releases/2014/01/state-cruise-industry-2014-global-growth-passenger-numbers-and-product-o
Conference Board of Canada. (2012, September 13). Canada’s airlines hoping to return to the black in 2013. Retrieved from http://www.conferenceboard.ca/press/newsrelease/12-09-14/canada_s_airlines_hoping_to_return_to_the_black_in_2013.aspx
Cruise BC. (2014). Cruise BC, Canada – Cruise executives. Retrieved from http://www.cruisebc.ca/index.php?page=5
CTV News. (2014a). Feds order Via Rail to address ‘safety’ issues at 6 Ottawa railway crossings. Retrieved from http://www.ctvnews.ca/business/feds-order-via-rail-to-address-safety-issues-at-6-ottawa-railway-crossings-1.1771156
CTV News. (2014b, October 1). Vancouver delays Uber, new cabs for six months. Retrieved from http://bc.ctvnews.ca/vancouver-delays-uber-new-cabs-for-six-months-1.2034892
Cubbon, Paul. (2010, October 22). Rocky economy can’t derail train company. The Globe and Mail. Retrieved from http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/small-business/rocky-economy-cant-derail-train-company/article1241050/
David Suzuki Foundation. (2014). Air travel and climate change. Retrieved from http://www.davidsuzuki.org/issues/climate-change/science/climate-change-basics/air-travel-and-climate-change/
DBRS. (2010, May). Rating Canadian rental car securitizations. Retrieved from http://www.dbrs.com/research/232631
Dupuis, Jean. (2011, November 16). VIA Rail Canada Inc. and the future of passenger rail in Canada. Ottawa, ON: Library of Parliament. Retrieved from http://www.parl.gc.ca/Content/LOP/ResearchPublications/2011-93-e.htm#a8
Economist, The. (2011, December 22). Business quotations: Our favourite air lines. Retrieved from http://www.economist.com/blogs/gulliver/2011/12/business-quotations
Gill, Vijay and R. Neil Raynor. (2013, September). Growing Canada’s economy: A new national air transportation policy. Ottawa, ON: Conference Board of Canada, p. i -4.
Government of Canada. (2014a, June 5). The Blue Sky Policy: Made in Canada, for Canada – Transport Canada. Retrieved from http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/policy/air-bluesky-menu-2989.htm
Government of Canada. (2014b, September 3). Railway Safety Act (1985, c. 32 (4th Supp.)) – Transport Canada. Retrieved from https://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/acts-regulations/acts-1985s4-32.htm
Hermiston, Sandra and Lynda Steele (2014, August 5). Why it costs so much more to fly in Canada. CTV Vancouver News. Retrieved from http://bc.ctvnews.ca/why-it-costs-so-much-more-to-fly-in-canada-1.1733387
Hill, Catey. (2013, February 1). What’s behind the river-cruise boom. Marketwatch. Retrieved from http://www.marketwatch.com/story/whats-behind-the-river-cruise-boom-2013-02-01
IATA. (2014a, June). IATA annual review 2014. Retrieved from http://www.iata.org/2014-review/reader.html?r=29/569#
IATA. (2014b). IATA-About us. Retrieved from http://www.iata.org/about/pages/index.aspx
Impact Project. (2012, January 20). Tracking harm: Health and environmental impacts of rail yards. The Impact Project Policy Brief Series. [PDF] Retrieved from http://hydra.usc.edu/scehsc/pdfs/Rail%20issue%20brief.%20January%202012.pdf
InterVISTAS. (2005, April). BC regional airports: A policy guide to viability. [PDF] Prepared for AIM/Council of Tourism Associations, Vancouver, BC. Retrieved from http://www.intervistas.com/downloads/BC_Regional_Airports.pdf
Keller, James. (2013, April 22). Karl Lilgert, Queen of the North officer, explains how ferry crashed. Huffpost British Columbia. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/04/22/karl-lilgert-queen-of-the-north_n_3134177.html
Kuittinen, Tero. (2014, September 19). Mobile apps are absolutely murdering San Francisco’s taxi industry. BGR. Retrieved from http://bgr.com/2014/09/19/uber-vs-lyft-vs-taxis/
Magrath, A. (2014, October 15). Longer than the shard and wider than a Boeing 747 wingspan: The world’s largest cruise ship sails into the UK for the first time. Mail Online. Retrieved from http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/travel_news/article-2793859/oasis-seas-world-s-largest-cruise-ship-sails-uk-time.html
Natural Resources Canada. (2013, May 15). Impacts on transportation infrastructure. Retrieved from http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/environment/resources/publications/impacts-adaptation/reports/assessments/2004/ch8/10217
Northern Rockies Regional Airport. (2014). History. Retrieved from http://www.flynorthernrockies.ca/history
Operation Lifesaver Canada. (2014). Train safety FAQ. Retrieved from http://www.operationlifesaver.ca/facts-and-stats/train-safety-faq/
Orcutt, April. (2011, November). World’s most beautiful rerry Rides.” Travel + Leisure. Retrieved from http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/worlds-most-beautiful-ferry-rides
Owram, Kristine. (2014, July 5). Unfriendly skies await proposed low-cost airlines Canada jetlines, jet naked. The Financial Post. Retrieved from http://business.financialpost.com/2014/07/05/unfriendly-skies-await-proposed-low-cost-airlines-canada-jetlines-jet-naked/#__federated=1
Proctor, Benn. (2014, June 3). Opinion: Time to reform Vancouver’s antiquated taxi industry. The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved from http://www.vancouversun.com/Opinion+Time+reform+Vancouver+antiquated+taxi+industry/9900418/story.html
PWC. (2012). Transportation & Logistics 2030, volume 5: Winning the talent race. [PDF] Retrieved from http://www.pwc.com/en_GX/gx/transportation-logistics/pdf/pwc-tl-2030-volume-5.pdf
Rocky Mountaineer. (2014). Canadian train travel, trips, rail journeys, vacations, holidays. Rocky Mountaineer. Retrieved from http://www.rockymountaineer.com/en_CA_BC/
Science Daily. (2013, June 17). Planes, trains, or automobiles: Travel choices for a smaller carbon footprint. Retrieved from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130617111345.htm
Tourism Vancouver. (2013, June). Vancouver Tourism master plan. [PDF] Retrieved from http://www.ticketstonight.ca/includes/content/images/media/docs/TMP-Final-doc1.pdf
WestJet. (2014). About WestJet. Retrieved from https://www.westjet.com/guest/en/about/
YCharts. (2014, September). Apple Profit Margin (Quarterly). Retrieved from http://ycharts.com/companies/AAPL/profit_margin