Montreal

'It's like a second Christmas': Montreal tourism booming

With the Just For Laughs festival, the Rogers Cup and the Osheaga music festival all taking place at the same time, Montreal is having one the the busiest tourism weekends of all time.

Festivals and low loonie bringing more travellers, and locals are staying in

Visitors to Montreal enjoy a game of giant Jenga at the Osheaga festival at Jean-Drapeau Park. (CBC)

With the Just For Laughs festival, the Rogers Cup and the Osheaga music festival all taking place at the same time, Montreal is having an exceptionally busy tourism weekend.

Add to that a cheap loonie and a steady number of "staycationers", and you have all the makings for a crowded city. The city's hotels were at capacity this weekend.

"It's like a second Christmas," said Pierre Bellrose of Tourisme Montréal. 

"Almost 60 per cent of the tourists come from outside Quebec, mostly Ontario. So there are big payoffs for Montreal's economy."

International travellers only. Sources: Statistics Canada and Google Finance. (Roberto Rocha/CBC)

According to numbers from Statistics Canada, foreign travel into Quebec is on an upswing since dropping to a low point in 2009, especially from the U.S. This resurgence coincides with an increasingly cheap Canadian dollar.

But it's not only foreign visitors livening up the city. Locals too are enjoying the summer at home. According to a Survey by CAA-Quebec of 1,000 Quebecers, 58 per cent said they'll spend the summer at home, a number similar to last year.

"We're taking advantage of what Montreal offers," said Emmanuel Boutaud, a staycationer interviewed by CBC Montreal. "We just went to a yoga class for free at Mount Royal, so everything that's available to Montreal residents we're taking advantage of."

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