If 2020 were an ocean liner, it would be the Titanic.
Our daily lives have changed because the unseen iceberg that we suspected was there sank the 2020 tourism season. We sailed at top speed anticipating another successful season without heeding the hazards on the horizon, namely COVID 19. Hindsight is always 20/20. Should we have been taking a serious step back in December to February to save the 2020 tourism season to some degree (the Atlantic Bubble earlier)? Time is a fortune teller.
Tourism in Newfoundland and Labrador is a major financially viable, renewable and essential portion of the provincial economy. The products we offer at Trinity Eco-tours are world class, once in a lifetime, life changing experiences, plus it is good value for your tourism dollar. Where else can you get such up close personal attention in an exotic, unspoiled, unique and friendly surroundings where the people are as lovely as the scenery?
From our meager beginnings we developed our tourism experience into a customer focused wildlife, whale and scenic experience on and off the water. We are a land/marine stay and play destination. Throughout that time our focus has remained the same; you, our guest. Our model relies on the safety of not only our customers but our staff and community. Changes to our operating procedures have been necessary to ensure the quality of your experience is unchanged yet deals with the pandemic measures.
While things operated a little differently this season, we were encouraged by how many Newfoundlanders and travellers in the Atlantic Bubble took advantage of ‘Staycation 2020’. We were thrilled to provide experiences and adventures to so many people this summer. This year’s patrons are our future ambassadors for tourism as this year they went the distance to partake of so many different experiential products and destinations within their own province. When a stranger asks the locals where to go, I know they will not be stuck for an answer! (Newfoundlanders usually aren’t!!) We look forward to the tourism season in 2021! Whatever it is, it will be challenging but always rewarding.
How We Stayed Safe in 2020
Like most businesses in Newfoundland, especially in the tourism industry, Trinity Eco-Tours saw a shortened tourism season as we awaited for Newfoundland’s COVID numbers to lower and the government to set firm guidelines. Once guidelines were announced, we began operating at a reduced capacity and worked to keep safety at the forefront. We increased safety measures by operating with smaller tour sizes, observing social distances and masks were possible, encouraging tours within the same bubble, sanitizing all customer contact areas before, during, and after tours finished.
Despite our ever changing world, we’re proud to say the authenticity and experience of an adventure with Trinity Eco Tours has remained the same. Customer feedback indicates it was another stellar season as far as the quality of our experiences with our interpretation of the tours, the wildlife and our history. As many know, Newfoundlanders are great storytellers. That trait remains true for our owner and tour guide here at Trinity Eco-tours, Skipper Bob.
While we may have kept our distance this summer, wildlife and marine life were everywhere! We were witness to a successful season where we saw so many incredible cetaceans, waterfowl, and wildlife with the beautiful Trinity Bay as our majestic scenic backdrop. Is it any wonder we see:
- Humpback Whales
- Bluefin Tuna
- Bald Eagles
- Minke Whales
- Fin Whales
- Sea Caves
- Waterfalls, and so much more!
We also joined the World Cetacean Alliance, the largest whale/dolphin advocate world wide whose aims for preservation and conservation align with our own values. Being a part of this organization gives us a larger collective voice to effect change for the better for cetaceans.
How Our Customers Perceived The 2020 Season
We could just go on and on about how incredible the season was, but we figured we’d let our customers speak about the season for themselves:
Professionalism, Quality, Value
My partner and I had such a good time kayaking with Trinity Eco-Tours! Chris (our guide) was awesome! He talked us through different routes and let us know his thoughts. We saw some lovely sights and had a great time! Would DEFINITELY recommend – well worth your money!
Well this was just a highlight of the trip. My wife has never been so excited in her life; from seeing our first puffins, to watching 7 humpbacks in a cove catching bait. The piece that made our day was the whale that spent the whole time on his back slapping his fins and tail. So amazing and will recommend it to anyone.
My wife and I had an amazing time on our whale tour today! Our guides were so friendly. The tour being on a small boat made the experience much more personal and enjoyable. They didn’t have a script or set plan they had to stick to so it was easy to just go and find whales. They left it up to us if we would prefer to enjoy the coastline or focus solely on whale watching. We saw two full breaches! The Humpbacks were very playfully flapping their fins, rolling over, and showing us their tails. We also saw several Fin Whales and Minks. It’s the best whale tour I’ve done and I would highly recommend this.
We are so thankful to share these experiences with guests and friends as well as guests who have become friends. Many of our guests are repeat customers, so we must be doing it right. We are going to keep on doing it right so you have a great experience with Trinity Eco- Tours. We hope to see you again next season!
The Rise of Staycation 2020
While a lot of people were unable to travel this summer, Newfoundlanders and the Atlantic Bubble embraced ‘Staycation 2020’. Unlike previous years where we see Newfoundlanders flock for the warmer regions down south, Europe, and the rest of the world, limited travel did not mean diminished experiences. Newfoundlanders ventured out into their own province to experience Newfoundland like an unabashed tourist.
While most of us grew up surrounded by Newfoundland’s unique offerings, we often take for granted the scenery, people and experiences this unique place has to offer. If you want to be a tourist in your province next year, check out our blog on all the things you can do in Newfoundland as a tourist HERE.
This past tourist season, Newfoundlanders expanded their horizons. We went farther afield and ventured to areas we had never been or revisited long unvisited roots. Tempering familiar settings with new experiences or new settings with old experiences, we got out there! Newfoundlanders did things they might have never done before, such as hikes, exploring the water, trying new restaurants or fishing for cod which has long been a familiar event for so many of us. Newfoundlanders got in touch with our roots, our heritage as well as our taste buds. (Fresh cod tongues and scrunchions take me back every time.)
Adopting the pedestrian mall in downtown St. John’s added a different feel to a familiar setting while promoting the revival of the downtown to local patrons. So much so it is likely to be a long term addition to the downtown core. Future tourists will appreciate the improvements adopted by the locals giving you a daytime as well as the nighttime George Street experience!
While the 2021 season is still a ways away, Staycation 2020 created a lot of great memories and will heavily influence how Newfoundlanders plan their vacations in 2021.
Tourism in 2021?
With this year’s tourism season dwindling into the twilight of the Staycation 2020 night, there’s already curiosity and questions about what the rising 2021 tourism dawn will look like. When will tourism start? Who can come to visit us? When should we book a tour for next season? What can we expect to see? What will our travel restrictions be? Will we have a vaccine to allow us to travel unrestricted?
Like the wildlife that makes our waters their home, we don’t truly know how the next season will turn out, as things continue to change daily. Fortunately, we’ve had effective measures in place (thanks to Dr. Fizgerald, Minister Haggie, and Premier Ball) that have worked exceptionally well this tourism season.
Looking back on the 2020 season, we conducted dozens of tours offering the same awe inspiring, roller coaster rides as before the pandemic. But the change this time was that Newfoundlanders were the ones who got that wow factor from our experiences with them.
As a business, Trinity Eco-Tours will continue to expand and improve during the offseason. We will add to measures already in place that put the safety of our staff and customers first foremost. Our business continues to adapt and prepare for our season start around May 2021.
While 2020 saw some ups and downs, we were happy to end on a great note and to provide our customers with stories, experiences, and adventures that will last for a lifetime!
We had a whale of a time during the 2020 season. We hope you did as well. At Trinity Eco-tours we look forward to 2021. We hope that we continue to garner new customers, but we really appreciate the local component who made any success of the 2020 season. Your patronage meant the world to us so we showed you the best of our world. Please reach out to us on any social media platform you use to share your experience with others. We would love to hear from you about your experiences with us this season.
Here’s to a safe and exhilarating 2021 tourism season. We will see you there!!