This week, the federal government launched a new $500-million Tourism Relief Fund (TRF) to support tourism businesses and organizations. The goal of the TRF is to help Canada’s tourism industry welcome back domestic travellers by creating new or enhanced tourism experiences and products, and to attract international visitors by repositioning Canada as a world-class destination.

In southern Ontario, FedDev Ontario is delivering TRF funding to local organizations.

Here’s what you need to know about the TRF and how you can apply to the funds: 

Upcoming technical briefings

FedDev Ontario is hosting 3 upcoming sessions to learn more about the program and how tourism and hospitality businesses can apply. Register today: 

Who can apply?

Eligible applicants include tourism entities that cater mainly to visitors, such as businesses; not-for-profit organizations, such as tourism associations; and band councils or other Indigenous organizations and cooperatives.

To be considered eligible for this Fund, applicants must meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • Be a key supplier or operator in the visitor experience;
  • Be part of a defined tourism cluster or tourism dependent community, including supporting downtown cores; or
  • Provide an anchor product or service in a destination.

What activities are supported?

Tourism Relief Fund projects will focus on: 

  • Product development: For example, projects that enhance tourism experiences, help tourism businesses adapt to the “new normal” and modernize their offerings, and encourage the adoption of more environmentally sustainable and inclusive practices. 
  • Destination development: For example, projects that position communities to take advantage of post-pandemic opportunities through strategic planning for medium- to long-term investments, as well as supporting destination development in line with objectives set out in the Federal Tourism Growth Strategy.

What kind of financial support is being provided?

Contributions to businesses will be either:

  • Non-repayable contributions up to $100,000 for up to 50% of eligible costs; or
  • Fully repayable contributions up to $500,000 for up to 75 percent of eligible costs.

Business cannot receive a combination of a non-repayable and a repayable contribution for the same project.

Contributions to not-for-profit organizations and Indigenous entities (not generating profits) will be eligible for non-repayable contributions.

  • Project contribution amounts would not exceed $500,000. The actual contribution amount will be based on the minimum amount required to carry out the project.

For more details, please visit FedDev Ontario’s TRF webpage and be sure to consult the Application Guide. You can also contact FedDev Ontario at 1-866-593-5505. 

For more helpful links and resources to help your business navigate through the pandemic, be sure to visit Destination Toronto’s resource page