Tourism is up, but so are travel costs

Seems like money ain't a thang for Canadian travellers who are throwing caution to the wind and booking (or re-booking) their long-awaited vacations—but rising costs across the board means budgeting for your 2023 escape is more important than ever.

Driving the news: Despite high airfare prices, Canadians are taking off to soak up the sun and culture abroad after years of staying home—tickets for sunshine destinations have jumped 20% from pre-pandemic prices, and economy flights to Europe are creeping towards $2,000, per the Toronto Star.

  • Prices for accommodations and activities have also surged. Tour operator TUI AG said bookings are 11% below 2019's numbers, but pricing is up 24%, signalling people are willing to pay more to travel.

  • Travel insurance costs have also jumped significantly since the onset of the pandemic, according to, with all-inclusive insurance packages increasing 22% year over year. 

Why it's happening: New trend data from shows that people use their holidays to better themselves, unplug and unwind—a necessity after years of being stir-crazy. 

  • One expert said, "as long as Canadians can keep the heat on and put food on the table, they're going to travel."

Yes, but: The effects of a vacation are null and void if you spend the other 50 weeks of the year stressing about money. 

Here are some great travel resources to help keep costs under control:

  • Get a free travel budget template. Sure, you could spend a few hours making your own version, but why bother? There are plenty online for free, like this super detailed one.

  • Calculate the "cost of living" for your destination. This handy cost comparison calculator will help you determine prices before you get there. 

  • Don't get hit with roaming charges overseas. You could buy a physical sim card for your phone when you land or try out one of the esim companies ranked here.

  • Negotiate your hotel bill. Staying for more than a couple of days, or have multiple rooms to book? Email a bunch of hotels at your destination in advance and ask for a discount on your room fee. Especially during off-peak seasons, they’ll often be willing to give you a break (or at least throw in some perks).
  • Optimize your points. New services like or Roame have popped up to help you put any reward points you’ve collected over the years to the best use.