Building better experiences for Bay of Fundy visitors

What is experiential tourism?

Experiential tourism is, according to the Gros Morne Institute for Sustainable Tourism, “travel that connects you with the essence of a place and its people by engaging visitors in a series of memorable travel activities, revealed over time, that are inherently personal, engage the senses, and make connections on an emotional, physical, spiritual or intellectual level. It responds to the desire to venture beyond the beaten tourist paths, dive deeper into authentic local culture, connects with people, and enriches their lives.”

These aren’t just tours, they are experiences that form the core memories of your trip. It’s not your normal tour – it’s the tour that takes it one step further, tells you the deeper story of the place you’re visiting. It isn’t necessarily complex, expensive, or involve a lot of fancy infrastructure.

The CCRTA Program

Developing great products

Part of the mandate of the CCRTA is to make our region a world-class and world-recognized destination of choice. Helping our members develop high quality experiential products is a key part of reaching that goal. This program will take you through the entire process of developing a great tour, including walking you through logistics and pricing, marketing and target audiences, and actually testing your product out.

This program is not about packaging and re-selling existing tours or products. It will develop or evolve products that truly qualify as experiential, increasing the quality of the product and the level of customer service. It is about changing our perceptions of the values of the interactions and experiences that we, in our region, take for granted, but are highly valued by others.

Making your product easy to find and buy

Reducing the number of steps from awareness to purchase for clients is a key component of success for these new products. As the tour operators develop the new experiences, the CCRTA will also develop an online portal as part of www.bayoffundystartshere.com to allow for effective marketing and direct online booking of these products as a service to our members.

This relieves our members of the burden (time and money) of creating individual online booking systems and website content, as well as some of the costs of marketing and promoting the experience. For the CCRTA, it provides us with high quality product to use in our marketing activities, a visible program to increase member loyalty and perceived benefits, as well as a revenue stream to help with administrative and operational costs not covered by the Destination Marketing Fund.

Mary and Bill Kendrick have developed the Experience PEI portal as experiential brokers, and will coach the CCRTA through the creation of the portal and marketing targets and strategies for the tours that are developed from our program.

The portal will launch in late April/early May 2018 and be used as part of the spring, summer, and fall CCRTA marketing campaigns.

Eligibility

You must be a member of the CCRTA. That means you, as an individual, business, or organization, are a member in good standing of a local Chamber of Commerce or Tourism Association, listed on our membership page.

You must be in the region from February to May, 2018 to participate in the program, and able to commit the time to complete the work. You must also be able to provide the experiences you develop in this program for sale in 2018 – you must have the capability of delivering the experiences to the public.

There is a non-refundable tuition fee of $200 to participate in the program.

How to Apply

Applications are now being accepted online at https://goo.gl/forms/LkTDfMF19Wmmn7tC3. If you have any questions, please contact Abby at [email protected]

Applications must be received by 4 PM on February 22, 2018.