There is some interesting data in the “2011 Toronto Visitor Market Report.”

niagara-falls-map.gifWe all know that our neighbor 90 miles to the north is one of the world’s great cities for business, trade, finance, growth and tourism.   It is now North America’s 4th largest city behind Mexico City, New York City, and Los Angeles after passing Chicago around the turn to the 21st century.

As a tourist destination it generates about C$4.6 billion annually.  That is a lot of revenue coming other Canadian, American, Mexican, Latin American, European and Asian travelers.  It 2011 Market Report identifies the United Kingdom, China, India, Germany, France, Japan, Australia, Italy, Brazil, South Carolina, Spain, Mexico and the Netherlands as being the home of the greatest number of travelers.

There may be some information to be gleaned from Toronto’s bounty that might be used for marketing the Niagara Region more effectively for longer stay by international visitors.  The report found that 40.5% of all travellers went to Niagara Falls and only 5% were heading for New York City.  I assume most of the Falls visitors stayed on the Canadian side of the river.  None-the-less it represents a sizeable portion of the total.

Here’s a brief recap, showing the 3 three and last 3 of a top 13 nation’s list.

Greatest number of visitor :    United Kingdom (199,600), China (142,800), India (78,800) and Spain (32,100), Netherlands (28,500), Mexico (25,900)

Total Spending in Canadian dollars:  United Kingdom ($142.16 million), China ($125.85 million), India ($62.8 million)

Per person spending:  Mexico ($1,050), Brazil ($1,000), South Korea ($968) and Spain ($581.62), Netherlands ($574.74), France ($557.94)

What did they do in Toronto?

Visited Restaurants:  China (98.8%), Japan (97.1%), Italy (97%) and India (90.3%), Mexico (90.2%), Australia (82.1%)

Visited local attractions:  Spain (89.7%),  Brazil (88.8%),  Mexico (82.0%) and Netherlands (68.5%), Germany (67.9%),  Australia (61.2%)

Went shopping:  Spain (87.4%),  Brazil (84.8%), Mexico (78.2%) and Germany (66.2%), Netherlands (63.7%), Australia (59.7%)

Visited Family and/or Friends:  China (76.4%), India (70%), Netherlands (61.3%) and Spain (51.7%), Japan (51.5%), Germany (49.4%)

Visited local Bar scene:  Brazil (46.1%), Spain (44.8%), Italy (44.6%) and Japan (31.6%), China (30.1%), India (28.0%)

Visited Museums/Galleries:  Spain (41.4%),  France (36.5%),  Mexico (36.1%) and  United Kingdom (22.2%), India (17.9%), Netherlands (16.9%)

Attended Spectator Sport:  Brazil (23.5%), Spain (20.7%), Mexico (20.3%) and Italy (10.1%), South Korea (10.1%), India (9.7%)

Went to a Nightclub:  Spain (19.5%), Australia (16.4%), Mexico (15.0%) and United Kingdom (8.4%), Netherlands (8.1%), China (7.1%)

Attended a Festival:  Spain (19.5%), Australia (14.9%), Mexico (12.8%) and India (3.9%), China (3.1%), Netherlands (2.4%)

Went to the Theater:  Mexico (7.5%), Brazil (7.0%),  South Korea (7.0%)  and Japan (2.2%), United Kingdom (2.1%), Italy (1.8%)

I think Toronto’s visitor profile turned up some surprises.  Like the Mexicans, Brazilians and Spaniards dominated the top three in spending, interest in local attractions, shopping, museums/galleries, local bar scene, spectator sports, nightclubs, festival, and theater.

Buffalo, NY  travel and tourism interests should do some research into the Latin/Spanish traveler.  It could be that advertising our cost advantage just might get this group of people to consider us for a visit as part of their travel agenda.