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COVID-19 Resources, Updates and News

As the voice of the Ontario tourism industry we recognize that in times of uncertainty there is a need for industry to have access to clear and reliable information. We have created this dedicated section of the website of to link to rapid updates on COVID-19. 

Our team is closely following the evolving situation and will link to pertinent articles, with a focus validity and relevance to our industry.

Our weekly TIAO newsletter includes all the latest information, government updates and resources we think are pertinent for those in the tourism industry. You can sign up for our free newsletter on our home page.



COVID-19 Protocols and Guidelines Resource Centre

As Ontario slowly looks to reopen it's economy there are a growing number of guidelines and protocol documents emerging on how to do so safely and adhering to physical distancing and health protocols. TIAO is collecting documents issued by other provincial governments, the federal government, international tourism agencies associations and others below to give you an insight on how to safely open and operate your businesses. Please note you will need to turn your pop-up blocker off to download PDF and word documents that these links link to.

RV, rafting and Camping


Events and Attractions

Workplaces, Resorts, Restaurants, Hotels and Motels.





Global Protocols ​​

Resources for Discovering our Province

As more areas of Ontario continue to gradually reopen we are gathering resources to discover our province when it is safe. 


President and CEO Beth Potter reacts to Premier Doug Ford's announcement on partial reopening of the economy. 

TIAO's Industry Response for Economic Recovery (April 14th)

TIAO's Industry Response for Economic Recovery 

Thanks to the comprehensive information and real-time financial data TIAO has collected during this crisis, we have been been able to paint an accurate picture of the challenges facing the tourism industry on the front line due to COVID-19.

This has helped us to identify the immediate short term critical support needed for businesses to survive this crisis and the long-term work needed to ensure that the tourism industry can help lead an economic recovery.

You can read and download our 'Industry Response for Economic Recovery here .

TIAO WIN - Tax relief for Northern Ontario (April 6th)

Thank you to Finance Minister Rod Phillips for his announcement today regarding support for remote Northern Ontario taxpayers and business owners.

As our President and CEO Beth Potter explains this is something we've been pushing for!

TIAO Policy Update (April 2nd)

At TIAO we are in ongoing communication with tourism stakeholders across Ontario. We are using our Evidence Generation Strategy (EGS) which includes stakeholder consultations, and survey data collected and analyzed through our province wide surveys. 

Data collected through the EGS is used to provide evidence informed recommendations to all levels of government.

We recognize that the response to COVID 19 requires a whole government approach, and that recommendations must reflect the cross-jurisdictional work that is underway.

Please see the TIAO COVID 19 Update document attached here.

This document is being updated on a rolling basis, as new information is acquired through our EGS. This document highlights our recommendations on behalf of the industry, and reflects what is being put forward by key international organizations, like the World Travel and Tourism Council.

Please continue to fill out our survey, join our President and CEO Beth Potter and our weekly calls, and reach out directly to Alex Rodgers our Director of Policy and Research at, 

TIAO COVID-19 Federal Government Recommendations

Over the weekend we were asked to consult our members on what steps the Federal Government should take to support the tourism industry. You can read our recommendations based on the feedback we received  that we sent to the office of Minister of Finance Bill Morneau by clicking here.

TIAO Industry Surveys

TIAO has been working with industry stakeholders and government to collect data on the impact of COVID-19 on the front-line. Our weekly surveys have provided a comprehensive database on the immediate and severe impact COVID-19 is having on businesses across the province.

This data is being used by government to shape the economic recovery package and monitor the continuing negative impact COVID-19 is having on the tourism industry.

Click here to view all survey results.


Since the escalation of the COVID-19 crisis, TIAO continues to hold weekly conference calls with industry stakeholders. These meetings are designed to disseminate information that we have received, give top line information on our industry consultations and the latest news from government and our partners. 
Sign up to our newsletter  for information on how to take part to be sent directly to your inbox.
You can read the notes of previous meetings here.
March 16th: Latest funding announcements, Tourism Economic Recovery Task Force, and more

March 30th: Budget Announcement + Fundings, updates from the Tourism Economic Recovery Task force and more

Click here for the previous meeting notes.


COVID-19 Webinars

Organizations across our industry are producing informative webinars on COVID-19. Varying from support in completing forms, maintaining your mental health and how to evolve your business.

COVID-19 Job Information

During the COVID-19 crisis we will post information on benefits and jobs available here for people affected by job losses and who are looking for new opportunities. 

Agriculture and Food Jobs in Ontario

Apply here for agriculture, agri-food and food industry jobs to support the response to the COVID-19.

The Canada United Small Business Relief Fund will be managed by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce on behalf of the national Chamber network in support of other chambers and partners to help small Canadian businesses with their recovery efforts as a result of COVID-19.

If awarded, a relief grant can be used for any of the following activities:

  • Purchasing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as masks, face shields, and latex gloves.
  • Renovating physical space to adhere to local, Provincial or Federal reopening guidelines.
  • Developing or improving e-commerce capabilities for your business.

Successful applicants will receive a relief grant of up to $5,000. We intend to support local businesses of all kinds from across the country (from retailers to barbershops to farmers).

Click here to learn more about Canada United.



Please click here to find briefings and resources from TIAO and outside organizations including the Provincial and Federal government, Public Health Ontario, Chambers of Commerce and others.

TIAO Advocacy

Please find below examples of TIAO advocacy documents, press releases and collaborative work with partners and industry stakeholders.

Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs (Culture and Heritage) 29th June

On Monday June 29th, TIAOs President and CEO Beth Potter, and the former Director of Policy & Research, Alexandra Rodgers, appeared before the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs, to present on the impact of COVID-19 to the Culture & Heritage sectors in Ontario.

The presentation built on the key points highlighted in our first appearance on June 4th, where we detailed key recommendations on how to sustain tourism businesses after the temporary shutdown of our $36 billion a year industry.

Beth Potter spoke to:

· The significance of culture and heritage in Ontario, as it represents our past and future

· The importance of ensuring that funding for Indigenous businesses is flowed through the correct channels, and that Aboriginal Financial Institutions are set up to support these businesses through the COVID-19 crisis. The need to continue supporting Francophone tourism in Ontario through investment in product development and ensuring that educational institutions in Ontario provide bilingual instruction to support the growth of a bilingual tourism workforce.

Please see the full script here.

Tourism Roundtable letter to Premier Ford (June 8th)

TIAOs President and CEO Beth Potter has joined other tourism leaders to form the Tourism Roundtable group.

The Roundtable is comprised of leaders in Canada’s tourism and travel sector – airports, airlines, hotels and others – working together with a goal of restarting the sector safely and smoothly.

The Roundtable have written to Premier Doug Ford urging the Ontario government to immediately establish clear and consistent health standards and protocols that are aligned with global rules and procedures and designed to build traveller confidence.

You can read the letter here.

Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs (June 4th)

Please find here TIAO's recommendations to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs as presented by our President and CEO Beth Potter on the 4th June.

Joint Letter to Premier Doug Ford (June 2nd)

Tourism organizations have come together to send the following joint letter to Premier Doug Ford with a simple request.

Allow businesses in the tourism and travel sector in Ontario to open immediately based on their ability to demonstrate that they are operating in accordance to the guidelines set out by WSPS.

As each business is unique, some will be able to open immediately, others will open when they are ready to do so. All sectors of the travel and tourism industry in Ontario are part of the same economic ecosystem. When one succeeds, so too do the others.

The COVID-19 pandemic is first and foremost a health crisis, however, it is also an economic crisis, and we are prepared to work collaboratively with government.

Read the full letter here. The letter was signed by;

David MacNeil - Chief Executive Officer - Festivals & Events Ontario

Doug Switzer - President and CEO - OMCA

Rebecca Mackenzie - President - CTA: Culinary Tourism Alliance

Don Cleary - President - Marriott International, Canada.

Troy Young - President - Attractions Ontario

Laurie Marcil - Executive Director - Nature and Outdoor Tourism Ontario

Terry Mundell - President & CEO - Greater Toronto Hotel Association

Rick Layzell - President & CEO - Boating Ontario

Alexandra Anderson - Executive Director - Camping In Ontario

Grace Sammut - Executive Director - Resorts of Ontario

Steve Ball - President - Ottawa Gatineau Hotel Association

Beth Potter - President and CEO - Tourism Industry Association of Ontario

Tony Elenis - President & CEO - Ontario Restaurant Hotel & Motel Association

Joint OBIAA, EDCO and TIAO letter to Finance Minister Rod Phillips (May 6th)

In partnership with our colleagues at the OBIAA and the EDCO we've sent the following letter to Ontario finance Minister Rod Phillips.

In addition to welcoming and commenting on the Ontario Jobs and Recovery Committee we've asked for immediate support for businesses regarding commercial rent. We've asked for the following.

Put rent relief in the hands of the tenants. To accomplish this, we recommend that mandating all landlords to enroll in CECRA if their tenants qualify.

Freeze rent evictions by passing legislation for a moratorium on commercial evictions for a minimum of six months (to be applied to tenants who were in good standing as of March 15).

That the 70% threshold be reviewed and, if necessary, reduced (e.g. a 70% threshold if your rent is above $5,000 and 50% below $5,000.


You can read the full letter here.