When the COVID-19 pandemic caused lockdowns around the globe, the burgeoning international cannabis tourism industry ground to a halt. However, as the world’s consumer destinations reopen, Canada seeks to position itself as the leader for all things related to canna-curious travel. On October 25, 2021, the New Heights Cannabis Tourism Summit will connect visionary business owners, policymakers, and pioneers in the cannabis and tourism sectors for a day of groundbreaking conversations regarding Canada’s future in the space, and how these efforts can aid the nation’s post-pandemic recovery.
The virtual conference is the third of its kind for New Heights Cannabis, a community that brings together business professionals and government officials for network-building and education in how to responsibly grow the Canadian cannabis industry. Hosted in partnership with the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO), the summit will feature presentations and panels that delve into recreational cannabis adventures such as culinary experiences, festivals and events, hotel stays, dispensary tours, and wellness and relaxation experiences. Keynote speakers include New Heights founder Jennifer Mason; TIAO President and CEO Christopher Bloore; Elizabeth Becker, founder of HiBnb, the first-ever platform for booking cannabis-friendly vacation accommodations; Susan Dupej, PhD, Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Guelph; and more.
“Cannabis and tourism are a natural connection,” says Mason. “They really incorporate the entire cannabis ecosystem from education to shopping to enjoyment of the product. Canada is in the early stage of cannabis tourism development and discovery; these experiences can cover a wide range such as accommodations, shopping, events, attractions, lounges, and so much more.”
Susan Dupej will be presenting the highlight of the summit, the unprecedented Canadian Cannabis Tourism Research Study, which aims to understand the demand for the country’s cannabis tourism offerings, and contextualize the average “canna tourist” profile by exploring their preferences and ideas to integrate cannabis into their travel plans. Developed by New Heights in partnership with the University of Guelph, the study looks to provide valuable data that will enable professionals to enter and invest in the cannabis industry with confidence. Summit attendees will learn crucial insights from the study, for which Dupej is leading the research, during the conference’s Executive Summary.
“Market research on cannabis tourism is important for gaining a working knowledge of the consumer,” says Dupej, “which is critical for developing products, services and experiences that meet the needs and preferences of a new market segment in the very early stages of a new industry.”
Christopher Bloore of TIAO expressed enthusiasm for what both the revolutionary study and the summit at large will do to propel a wider understanding of cannabis tourism’s promise for Canada forward: “The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the essential need for accurate data and analysis of economic trends and behaviours within the tourism industry. Data that has helped shape economic support programs and captured the true size of our industry. Canada is one of the only places in the world that has Federal legislation regarding cannabis. This unique situation, combined with the need for accurate Canadian data, is why we support the need for the Canadian Cannabis Tourism Study that is being done on travel patterns and tourism behaviors. Our members are interested in this market and how this can be an opportunity. TIAO’s partnership with New Heights Cannabis and their role in education on this market is one we are proud to support.”
The Canadian Cannabis Tourism Research Study is currently open for submissions, and participants are eligible to win a $3,600 cannabis tourism vacation courtesy of HiBnb.
From business networking to revolutionary data, to discovering how each step of your future vacation could be infused with the plant, it seems all the action will be happening up North for an inimitable elevated experience.
The 3rd New Heights Cannabis Tourism Summit takes place October 25, 2021. To register, click here. For more about New Heights Cannabis, visit newheightscannabis.com or follow @newheightscannabis on Instagram.