Canada Day weekend usually brings throngs of visitors to the city when there’s no pandemic to worry about, but this year is obviously different.
COVID-19 travel restrictions have kept people grounded close to home and for more than three months the Tourism Prince George Visitor Information Centre has been closed.
That forced closure will end in less than two weeks, on July 1st, when the visitor centre will finally reopen to the public with protocols in place to protect the health of staff and visitors.
“We are looking forward to welcoming guests on July 1 and onwards,” said Tracey McBride, hired in January as CEO of Tourism Prince George.
“While things may look slightly different at the centre this summer with some modifications to the physical space, our staff and summer counsellors will provide the same excellent customer service and guest services as we always have.”
The visitor centre will be open from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. on weekdays and from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Saturdays.
The centre will limit the number of visitors to four different parties or six individuals at a time. Fewer gift shop items will be on display and the number of pamphlets and guides available to the public will also be reduced to limit the threat of virus transmission. Staff shifts will be rotated to reflect occupancy limits of the building and where social distancing is not possible, Plexiglass barriers with keep staff and guest separated.
Tourism PG has prepared a COVID-19 hub page for local residents and visitors and people are being encouraged come to the centre to pick up information packages that can be pre-ordered by phone (250-562-3700) or email email@example.com.
The tourism sector has been hard-hit by the pandemic but Tourism staff remain optimistic a full recovery is imminent and are asking the public to respond to residents’ survey to help gauge opinions on visitors to the city.
“Based on the results of the survey, we’ll develop some creative and enticing tourism packages to help drive local tourism and stimulate economic activity,” McBride said.