Canadian documentary sheds light on mass tourism

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A Canadian-made documentary explores the harmful effects of mass tourism. Executive Producer Bruce Poon Tip discusses the future of travel, and the importance of being responsible tourists – Apr 5, 2022

A Canadian-made documentary that premiered in Vancouver this week aims to shine a light on the negative effects travel can have on world cultures and landscapes.

The Last Tourist brings awareness to what is known as mass tourism as more people begin to travel now that COVID restrictions have been lifted.

Executive producer Bruce Poon Tip says this is an opportunity for the travel industry to change and for tourists to make more mindful decisions when it comes to their next vacation.

Read more: What’s behind the growing interest in Indigenous-led tourism in Canada?

“Local communities aren’t benefiting when mass… and luxury tours are being brought into some of the poorest countries in the world,” said Tip.

If done right, travelling can help with wealth distribution, while giving travellers enriching experiences, he explained.

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Tip also recommends researching tour companies before booking and keeping money in the local economy, whether that means staying in locally-owned hotels, eating at locally-owned restaurants or shopping locally.

Read more: Travel into Canada was up in January. But it was still below pre-pandemic levels

“When you decide you go on holiday, that’s incredible privilege, and it’s not a right,” Tip said. “I think that simple mindset… will change the way you look and how you book your travel and how you travel and match your values to that.”

The Last Tourist premiered April 5 in Vancouver and is available on Apple TV and Amazon.

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