Coronavirus Information | Coronavirus Information

Tourism Saskatchewan understands that these are unprecedented times for Saskatchewan’s tourism industry and tourism operators. The COVID-19 pandemic brought financial stress and uncertainty to attractions, businesses, events and other tourism organizations.

We are working closely with provincial and federal agencies, Destination Canada, the Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC) and other industry partners to develop plans and support programs for the industry's recovery.

We are here to help. Please contact us. Email your COVID-19 questions and concerns to questions@tourismsask.com.


A message from the Honourable Gene Makowsky

Click on the links below to go the sections. In addition, check out the Questions and Answers for the tourism industry in Saskatchewan.

LAST UPDATED: August 11, 2020

ANNOUNCEMENTS
TOURISM ASSOCIATIONS DIRECTORY
BUSINESS OPERATIONS SUPPORT
EMPLOYEE SUPPORT
MARKETING SUPPORT
RECOVERY RESOURCES
WEBINARS, EVENTS AND RESOURCES
PROVINCIAL AND NATIONAL PARKS
PUBLIC HEALTH AND PANDEMIC INFORMATION

ANNOUNCEMENTS

New Saskatchewan Tourism Sector Support Program introduced

The Government of Saskatchewan announced its $35 million investment in the Saskatchewan Tourism Sector Support Program (STSSP). The program offers relief to tourism businesses that suffered severe losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A portion of the investment is targeted for marketing support to reignite interest in and demand for Saskatchewan travel experiences.

The STSSP offers a one-time, non-repayable emergency payment to eligible tourism operators in the hospitality and event/attraction industries. For the accommodation sector and large event facilities, payments will range from $10,000-$50,000, depending on sales revenue. For attraction, tour or event operators with ongoing fixed costs, the payment range is $7,500-$15,000.

The STSSP application period is August 24-October 1, 2020.

Of the $35 million, $5 million will be issued to Tourism Saskatchewan to support marketing the province as a destination. The funding will help industry operators and businesses generate short- and medium-term revenue. More details about this portion of the STSSP are forthcoming. Tourism Saskatchewan will communicate the latest information via Industry Updates and on Industry.TourismSaskatchewan.com as details become available.

Tourism Saskatchewan welcomes questions or inquiries from industry. Email questions@tourismsask.com.

Registration open for TIAC Capacity Building Workshops

The Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC) is launching a pan-Canadian, capacity-building Elevating Canadian Experiences workshop series that will support small and medium-sized businesses in rural and secondary markets.

Tourism Saskatchewan, in partnership with TIAC and Tourism Saskatoon, will co-host two province-wide online workshops on August 11-12. Additional partners include the Culinary Tourism Alliance and Twenty31 Consulting.

Designed for industry partners, small and medium-sized tourism operators and other tourism organizations, these workshops will address capacity building and strategy development, with a focus on the following:

  • Support for winter and shoulder season development – Canada is renowned for its winters; however, only one per cent of activities are winter-based, which creates challenges for tourism operators trying to optimize the use of talent and capital investments.
  • Support for culinary tourism development – Approximately one-fifth of spending by international travellers in Canada is on food and beverage. By increasing visitor demand for local food and drink, food tourism contributes to the long-term sustainability of local agriculture, food systems, communities and culture.

Register for one or both workshops. Space is limited; early registration is encouraged.

Contact the following with additional questions or inquiries:

 

Federal Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program extended

The Government of Canada announced a one month extension of the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program to help qualifying small businesses pay rent in August rent.

Businesses that qualified for the CECRA based on existing program parameters will be able to apply for the additional month extension based on having a 70 per cent drop in revenue for April, May and June. They are not required to reassess the declining revenue percentage for July and August. Participation in the one-month extension is voluntary. Both existing applicants to the CECRA and new applicants may opt for the August rent reduction.

More activities resume in Re-Open Saskatchewan plan

The Government of Saskatchewan announced resumption of additional activities and businesses, under Phase 4 of the Re-Open Saskatchewan plan. Guidelines are available for the added activities: yard and garage sales and door-to-door canvassing and sales.

As of July 21, modifications came into effect for:

  • Drive-in theatres – reducing distance between vehicles to two metres, down from five.
  • Retail guidelines, libraries and places of worship – reducing the length of time that returned or donated items must be held to 24 hours, down from 72.
  • Fitness facilities – permitting 24-hour access to fitness facilities, and ensuring registration of guests to facilitate contact tracing, if required.
  • Campgrounds – laundry facilities are now able to open following new guidelines for safe operation.

Additional information will continue to be added to the Re-Open Saskatchewan plan based on direction from public health officials and input from businesses and service providers.

Saskatchewan residents are encouraged to become familiar with the guidelines and abide by recommendations to ensure that Saskatchewan re-opens safely and there is minimal transmission of COVID-19. 

 

Canadian Heritage announces expanded support for heritage organizations

The COVID-19 Emergency Support Fund for Heritage Organizations, available through the Museums Assistance Program, provides emergency financial assistance to heritage institutions in the preservation and presentation of heritage collections in Canada.

Eligibility criteria has been expanded to include smaller organizations with annual expenses under $10,000. View the summary of criteria for heritage organizations.

The closing date to apply for funding is September 1, 2020. Funds are limited and organizations are advised to apply at their earliest convenience.

Federal wage subsidy for businesses to be extended to December

The federal government is extending the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program to December of this year. The program covers 75 per cent of wages, up to a weekly maximum of $847, for workers at eligible companies and non-profits affected by the economic slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Resources can be found on CRA’s Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy web page, including the Frequently asked questions - Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy and the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy application guide. The CRA also encourages employers who haven’t already done so to sign up for My Business Account or Represent a Client, as well as for Direct deposit.

 

TOURISM ASSOCIATIONS DIRECTORY

Destination Canada

Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC)

Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada (ITAC)
 

Tourism HR Canada

Hotel Association of Canada (HAC)

Restaurants Canada

 

BUSINESS OPERATIONS SUPPORT

Government of Saskatchewan

The Business Response Team works directly with businesses to identify program supports, both provincially and federally.
Business Response Team
1-844-800-8688
supportforbusiness@gov.sk.ca

Re-Open Saskatchewan Training Subsidy

The Re-Open Saskatchewan Training Subsidy (RSTS) program will reimburse eligible private-sector employers 100 per cent of employee training costs up to a maximum of $10,000 per business to mitigate against additional financial impacts from training required to support their safe re-opening.

The $2 million RSTS program will support short-term training of employees, focusing on areas such as health and safety requirements and the adoption of innovative practices to help the business adapt to social distancing requirements. The RSTS program is being launched as a temporary emergency response for eligible employers who are currently on the Government of Saskatchewan’s list of critical public services and allowable businesses during the emergency period or set to resume business operations in a confirmed phase of the Re-Open Saskatchewan plan

The application deadline has been extended to December 31, 2020.

For more information, employers can visit saskatchewan.ca/training-subsidy, call 306-964-1005 for Saskatoon and area or 306-787-4677 for Regina and area, or email cansaskjobgrant@gov.sk.ca

Saskatchewan Economic Development Authority

The Saskatchewan Economic Development Authority is offering training through its Destination Creation Program. Businesses can apply to the Canada-Saskatchewan Job Grant to subsidize these training costs. The new Re-Open Saskatchewan Training Subsidy Program can also be accessed to cover the training costs - application deadline is December 31.

Provincial Sales Tax Remittance Relief

Saskatchewan businesses are currently able to defer Provincial Sales Tax (PST) remittance for three-months. Businesses that are unable to file their provincial tax return(s) by the due date may submit a request for relief from penalty and interest charges on the return(s) affected. Call the Tax Inquiry Line at 1-800-667-6102 or email sasktaxinfo@gov.sk.ca with any PST-related questions.

Government of Canada

Canada Summer Jobs Program – temporary flexibilities offered to employers

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of flexibilities have been introduced to the Canada Summer Jobs Program in areas of wage subsidies, part-time placements, employment period and changes to project and job activities.

Federal Work-Sharing Program extended

The Government of Canada has extended the during of its Work-Sharing Program from 38 weeks to 76 weeks for employers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This measure will provide income support to employees eligible for Employment Insurance who agree to reduce their normal working hours because of developments beyond the control of their employers.

Canadian Business Resilience Network

  • Resources page to navigate government programs for COVID-19 assistance

Employment and Social Development Canada

World Health Organization (WHO) Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC)
*please contact your financial institution first if you are not already a BDC member*
Conference Board of Canada

Canadian Payroll Association
Canadian Chamber of Commerce Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada Canadian Federation for Independent Business (CFIB) Export Development Canada Service Hospitality Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada Global Affairs Canada

Government of Saskatchewan - Saskatchewan Small Business Emergency Payment

Western Economic Diversification Canada

Export Development Canada

Google for Small Businesses

Saskatoon Regional Economic Development Authority 

Business Development Bank of Canada

Square One (Saskatchewan Centre for Entrepreneurship)

Facebook Small Business Grants Program

COVID-19 Benefits Calculator - Step-by-step guide during the COVID-19 pandemic to find out which benefits your business qualifies for and how to apply with The Government of Canada

Bank of Canada Rate News

Finance Canada

Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce

Saskatchewan Hotel and Hospitality Association

EMPLOYEE SUPPORT

Government of Saskatchewan

Support for workers adversely affected by the COVID-19 situation:
COVID-19 Support for Workers

Saskatchewan Self-Isolation Support Program

The Government of Saskatchewan offers the Saskatchewan Self-Isolation Support Program for Saskatchewan workers who are in self-isolation due to COVID-19 infection, contact or symptoms, and are ineligible for other government assistance programs. Eligible applications can access $450 per week for a maximum of two weeks.

MARKETING SUPPORT

BC Hughes

Destination Think!

Destination Canada

BC Hotel Association

Destinations Canada

 

RECOVERY SUPPORT

Tourism Saskatchewan

Tourism Saskatchewan’s video, “Pathway to Recovery,” lays out Tourism Saskatchewan’s phased plan to support the tourism industry through the COVID-19 crisis and beyond, through close work with DMOs, CMOs, operators and industry stakeholders. As the Re-open Saskatchewan plan states: “Although the challenge is formidable, it’s one that we’re overcoming by working together.”

Tourism Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan Economic Development Authority

The Saskatchewan Economic Development Authority is offering training through its Destination Creation Program. Businesses can apply to the Canada-Saskatchewan Job Grant to subsidize these training costs. The new Re-Open Saskatchewan Training Subsidy Program can also be accessed to cover the training costs - application deadline is December 31.

Government of Canada

Tourism HR Canada

Museums Association of Saskatchewan

Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada

Restaurants Canada - Free Webinars and Resources

Destination Think!

Service Hospitality

World Travel and Tourism Council

 

WEBINARS, EVENTS AND RESOURCES

Tourism Saskatchewan

  • Adapting Your Business: a Strategic Approach. Presenter: Albert Jame, Strategy Director, Zu.com. (Recording)
  • Know Your MarketsPresenters: Jonathan Potts, Executive Director of Marketing and Communications, Tourism Saskatchewan; Jeannette Lye, Manager of Planning and Research, Tourism Saskatchewan. Learn about Saskatchewan resident’s travel behaviour and media preferences. Find out who is travelling this summer, what they are looking for and how to reach them. (Recording)
  • Controlling for COVID-19 with Confidencethinking beyond the mask and hand sanitizer to develop effective safety precautionsPresenter: Robyn Reist, Senior Specialist, Occupational Health and Safety, RCH Consulting Ltd. (Recordng)
  • From Recovery to Resilience. Presenter: Philip Mondor, President and CEO, Tourism HR Canada (Recordng)
  • Ramping Up as the Curve FlattensPresenter: Eva Gutsche, Owner, STEM Consulting & Marketing Inc. (Recordng)

All Tourism Saskatchewan webinars are posted the Pathways to Recovery playlist.

Tourism Industry Association of Canada

The Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC) is launching a pan-Canadian, capacity-building Elevating Canadian Experiences workshop series that will support small and medium-sized businesses in rural and secondary markets.The two workshops being held are on these two topics:

  • Support for winter and shoulder season development
  • Support for culinary tourism development

Register for one or both workshops. Space is limited; early registration is encouraged.

 Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce

Government of Canada

World Tourism Organization

Destination Canada

Tourism HR Canada

Museums Association of Saskatchewan

Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada

Go2HR

Restaurants Canada - Free Webinars and Resources

Ascent Strategy

  • Business Resilience Free Webinar Series - A community initiative to provide business owners with access to experts and accurate information as they navigate the challenge of the COVID-19 crisis

Twenty31

Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety

SafetyCheck - Canadian Food Safety Group

Destinations International

Trans Canada Trail (The Great Trail)

Conference Board of Canada

Destination Think!

Service Hospitality

World Travel and Tourism Council

Saskatchewan Parks and Recreation Association

Lodging on Demand

Business Development Bank of Canada

PROVINCIAL AND NATIONAL PARKS

Saskatchewan Provincial Parks

Provincial Park campgrounds are open for overnight camping effective June 1, 2020. Priority bookings are given to Saskatchewan residents. Bookings are now accepted from out-of-province visitors.

SaskParks urges people to follow social distancing practices and take necessary precautions to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Park staff are available by phone (1-800-205-7070) or email (parks.info@gov.sk.ca) to answer questions.You can also visit saskparks.com for more information. 

NATIONAL PARKS

Canadian residents will be able to camp in a number of national parks, beginning June 29. Grasslands National Park and Prince Albert National Park are included in the parks that are opening campgrounds for the summer season.

Before visiting, review Parks Canada’s guidelines for camping during COVID-19. Camping information specific to Grasslands National Park and Prince Albert National Park is also available.

If you didn't find what you were looking for above, please email your COVID-19 questions and concerns to questions@tourismsask.com.
OR, visit this Questions and Answers page for the tourism industry.

PUBLIC HEALTH AND PANDEMIC INFORMATION

Government of Saskatchewan

SaskAlert App
The Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency is urging Saskatchewan residents to download the SaskAlert App to receive accurate and timely details about COVID-19. The app provides critical information to help protect individuals and families. Users have options for receiving public emergency alerts for the entire province, or for a specific municipality or First Nation. The app can target residents in a geographic area with alerts for that region. In case of an emergency, a tone will sound, similar to receiving a normal text message notification. This will occur even if the app is closed. Individuals can then open the app to find information on the emergency and instructions on any required actions.

Public Health Agency of Canada

The World Health Organization (WHO)