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August Tourism Performance Statistics Now Available

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Tourism Nova Scotia gathers and reports tourism statistics on behalf of the tourism industry. Updated tourism statistics are now available at

Year to Date August 2020 Accommodations Activity in Nova Scotia

Accommodations operators from across the province report 810,000 room nights sold year to date August 2020, a decrease of 56% compared with the same period in 2019.

Fixed-roof accommodation data continues to reveal the dramatic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Nova Scotia’s tourism industry, with a decline of 58% in room nights sold in August (a loss of 230,000 room nights sold) compared with August 2019. At the same time, declines in room nights sold moderated in August compared to June and July, suggesting a somewhat improving trend, and increasing confidence in travel by Nova Scotians and Atlantic Canadians as the summer progressed.

Year to Date August 2020 Sharing Economy Platforms Activity in Nova Scotia

According to AirDNA data, for the period of year to date August 2020, there were 227,000 room nights booked through sharing economy platforms, a decrease of 32% compared to the same period in 2019.

Room nights booked through sharing economy platforms were down by 42% in August compared to the same month last year.

August Non-resident Visitation

Reflective of the significant impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, non-resident visitation to Nova Scotia was down 74% in August 2020. According to statistics gathered by Tourism Nova Scotia, there were 106,000 non-resident visitors to Nova Scotia in August, with 11,000 visitors arriving by air (down 92%), and 95,000 visitors arriving by road (down 67%).

As a result of the pandemic, Atlantic Canadians made up a higher share of visitors to Nova Scotia in August 2020 than the same period in previous years. Atlantic Canadians typically account for about one-third of overall August visitation (with 35% of visitors being Atlantic residents in August 2019). This year, 80,700 or 76% of August visitors were Atlantic Canadians traveling within the Atlantic bubble. In addition, 22% of August visitors were from other regions of Canada, and fewer than 2% were international visitors. All visitors from outside of Atlantic Canada are required to self-isolate for 14 days upon arriving in Nova Scotia. 

Tourism Nova Scotia’s operations were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and we were unable to conduct enumeration activities between mid-March and July 2020. Our enumerators were able to resume work at the beginning of August. We are working to develop estimates of visitation for the March-July period, and expect to be able to publish these later this year.