I could write this article in two emojis and you would know what I meant. The dollar sign and the emoji with clenched teeth, they pretty much sum it up.
So, what can we do as travelling Canadians with a 70 cent dollar? What if it gets worse?
What will we do with a 59 cent dollar? Forecasters are saying by the end of 2016, our dollar could hit an all time low.
Here are our best options as I see it:
Stay home! Let’s explore and celebrate our own country. Let this be the year you see the coast, see the mountains and most importantly re-connect with your own family. Let this be, the year that we revive the family road trip.
Be the best hosts! Let us, as a community and as individuals, invite our American friends and neighbours to come and visit Canada. An injection of funds will stimulate our economy. Let’s use tourism so as to build our own jobs and showcase our great nation.
Are you feeling the pinch of our weak Canadian dollar? You’re not alone. Thousands of Canadian snowbirds are cutting their trips short, or staying home. With an exchange rate near $1.45 per $1 US it has made travel to the United States far less attractive or affordable.
Don’t despair, you may still be able to afford a border run for your Cherry Coke and your Powerball ticket. The key is to do your homework. With a drop in Canadian tourists, many of our neighbouring American cities, like Grand Forks and Minot are sweetening the deals. When was the last time you were offered a room at a brand new hotel for $70?
The key is to do your homework and think frugally.
Research before you go. Don’t assume you will find deals when you get there. Go to sites like EzMarketing.ca and print your hotel coupons first.
Call and deal locally. The 1-800 numbers for booking hotels are not routinely updated with the local specials. Look for the franchise Facebook pages and check there for current deals.
Look for hotels with added value, like free breakfast, manager’s reception or in-room kitchenettes. Many hotels will also offer area coupons (for restaurants and shopping) at their front desk.
Time to order pizza. Grab a large pizza to share, rather than going out for a sit down meal for 4.
Speak up. Ask for Canadian specials by e-mailing the tourism sites and getting on their mailing list.
In this situation, it is to your benefit to think and act locally. Southern states, like Texas and California are less likely to offer Canadian deals. However, if you have your heart set on a sunshine trip, the same tips will apply. Research and get connected to find the deals that fit your budget.
Westjet is offering some nearly unbelievable prices on the Winnipeg to Kelowna route. The return trip, taxes included is just $187. We have the upstart airline, New Leaf, to thank for this price war.
To take this deal to the next level, we turn to Expedia.ca to pair it with a hotel. Choosing a well rated hotel you can pair it up for just $385. This is a 3 night vacation with fabulous flight times. Both the hotels shown include breakfast, adding extra value.
The weather at the end of April should be lovely. You could enjoy a game of golf or take a winery tour. To plan your activities visit Tourism Kelowna.
Price wars are very volatile, meaning the prices could disappear without notice. It’s not like an advertised sale with dates. Act quickly and you could be bragging about the deal all year long.