Edmonton International Airport Welcomes the World to Canada's West

EDMONTON, Jan. 21 /CNW/ - International visitors arriving at Edmonton International Airport (EIA) now catch a special glimpse of Alberta's unique travel experiences while getting into the Olympic Spirit.

Spectacular images of Alberta along with a warm Olympic welcome will greet thousands of travellers as the airport launches the Welcome to Canada initiative. This unprecedented, tourism-focused partnership brings together the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC), the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and provincial tourism marketing organizations.

In Edmonton, proud partners include Travel Alberta, Edmonton International Airport, Edmonton Tourism and West Edmonton Mall.

"This initiative is a great way to welcome the world to Canada," says the Honourable Rob Moore, Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism). "It will get visitors excited about the many unique experiences Alberta has to offer and it will demonstrate our pride and enthusiasm for Canada's 2010 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games."

"We only have one chance to make an unforgettable first impression," says Cindy Ady, Alberta's Minister of Tourism, Parks and Recreation. "Showcasing Alberta's incredible experiences to our international guests as they arrive is a great way to capture their imagination and entice them to explore the entire province."

The CTC and the CBSA are partnering together on the Welcome to Canada initiative to showcase Canada and profile its tourism industry before, during and after the 2010 Winter Games. This initiative is also an excellent opportunity to enhance the overall look of the CBSA's public areas in selected ports of entry and add to the visitor arrival experience.

"With the 2010 Winter Games just weeks away, CBSA staff here in Edmonton and across the country are preparing to welcome the world to Canada," says Mike Styre, CBSA Regional Director General, Prairie Region. "We look forward to doing our part to ensure a safe and secure Games."

"We are proud to partner with the Olympic and Paralympic Games and join in celebrations for the 2010 Winter Games," says Reg Milley, Edmonton International Airport's President and CEO.

Milley notes that Vancouver is just one of EIA's more than 50 non-stop destinations. "We have roughly 17 daily flights to Vancouver and our excellent connections provide a great opportunity to head West and get caught up in the Olympic Spirit."

In 2009, the program was officially launched at Ottawa MacDonald-Cartier International Airport, and is now also in place at Vancouver International Airport and Toronto Pearson International Airport.

About the CTC

The CTC is Canada's national tourism marketing organization. Our vision is inspiring the world to explore Canada. With our partners in the tourism industry and the governments of Canada, the provinces and the territories, we advertise and market Canada in 12 countries around the world, conduct industry research and studies, and promote product and industry development. For daily updates on CTC initiatives, subscribe to CTC News, available through RSS feeds and by e-mail.

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SOURCE Canadian Tourism Commission

For further information: For further information: Jitka Licenik, Corporate Communications Advisor, Canadian Tourism Commission, Tel: (604) 638-2482, licenik.jitka@ctc-cct.ca, www.mediacentre.canada.travel; Donna Call, Communications, Edmonton International Airport, Tel: (780) 890-8454, Cell: (780) 717-5117, dcall@flyeia.com; Lisa White, Communications Officer, Canada Border Services Agency, Tel: (403) 292-4011, Cell: (403) 650-4295, Lisa.White@cbsa-asfc.gc.ca; Noelle Aune, Executive Director, Media, Public Relations & e-Marketing, Travel Alberta, Tel: (403) 648-1041, Cell: (403) 669-2947, Noelle.Aune@TravelAlberta.com

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Canadian Tourism Commission

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