Canadian tour operators will be catering to many of their own this year, as more and more Canadians plan to travel domestically this summer season. Trips south of the border have become less attractive due to the soaring American dollar. Whether you are seasoned tour operator or just thinking of getting into the industry, it is important to understand what kinds of experiences your customer are looking for so that you can tailor your offerings and properly market your business to them. Travellers from around the globe can be broken down into multiple demographic groups based on personality and interests. Today, there are 3 main groups in which Canadian travellers fit: Free Spirits, Cultural Explorers, and Authentic Experiencers.

Let's breakdown who fits into these subgroups and how you can make them your customer.

Free Spirits

  • 54% Women
  • 46% Men
  • 49% Between Ages 18-34
Free Spirit travellers love luxury, fine dining and exploring tourist hot spots. Their ideal vacation is 8 to 10 days long and is filled with trips to the beach, enjoying local food and taking advantage of the exciting night life. Out of the top 3 Canadian demographics, these young bucks have the highest level of trust in brands & big business advertisements. If you want to attract Free Spirit travellers to your business, we suggest budgeting some of your marketing dollars towards advertising on social media channels like Instagram and Facebook.

Social Media Examiner offers great tips on how to get started with social media advertisements.

For Facebook & Instagram ads, be sure to view our guide on effective advertisements.

Cultural Explorers

  • 66% Women
  • 34% Men
  • 47% Between Ages 35-54
Lovers of a long-haul vacations. Cultural Explorers like taking several days to fully immerse themselves in a new culture or setting. Scoring the highest out of all other Canadian traveller types, a large 81% of these adventurers choose whale watching & wildlife tours as their favourite travel activity. Unlike Free Spirits, this demographic places a very low importance on advertisements as a form of vacation planning. The best way to reach them is through word of mouth and personal recommendations. Creating relationships with hotel concierge staff is a great way to spread the word about your tour business. Make sure your TripAdvisor account is up-to-date incase they decide to look you up after hearing about your tours.

Authentic Experiencers

  • 49% Women
  • 51% Men
  • 51% Ages 55+
  • The oldest demographic, mostly over the age of 55 is the Authentic Experiencers. They want the chance to connect with locals in meaningful ways when they travel and want to be surrounded by nature and culture. A trip to admire architecture, paired with wildlife viewing in a national park is exactly what they are looking for. Out of the three Canadian travel types, they are the most old-school and the most likely to look to a newspaper or local guidebooks for things to do. If you offer tours based around culture, art and sightseeing, this is a great audience to market to.


  1. All demographic groups can benefit from a clear call to action.
  2. Having a clear call to action means that it is obvious what steps travellers need to take to book with you. Make sure that all of your social media accounts link to your website and that all of your tour offerings are up-to-date.
  3. Trip planning predominantly takes place online.
  4. In fact, 70% of global travellers prefer to book online. If a traveller needs to make the extra effort to pick up the phone, or write you an email to make a reservation, that means taking extra time out of their day and increasing the risk of drop-off.