Glacier Media sells city tourism publications

City Passports buys Visitors’ Choice Vancouver titles to complement its existing portfolio

Paul Harris, president of BIV Media Group, with Visitors’ Choice Vancouver’s Dee Klapwyk and Randy Vannatter

Glacier Media Inc. has sold its Vancouver-based tourism publications to City Passports, a Vancouver-based tourism marketing company.

The sale includes the three annual Visitors’ Choice Vancouver editions, as well as annual Chinese- and Japanese-language versions.

These editions will be operated and marketed by City Passports president Randy Vannatter and former Visitors’ Choice employee Dee Klapwyk.

Glacier Media, which owns newspapers across B.C. and media assets across Canada, is the parent company of Business in Vancouver Media Group. BIV has operated Visitors’ Choice publications for several years.

“We have been looking for a hands-on tourism industry publisher that could grow and complement the Visitors’ Choice brand,” said BIV Media Group president Paul Harris, “and having Dee involved along with Randy made it an easy decision to have them own and operate Visitors’ Choice Vancouver.” 

Glacier will continue to produce Visitors’ Choice publications within B.C., including publications for the Sunshine Coast, Surrey/White Rock and Delta.

“City Passports has been providing Vancouver’s Attraction Passport to visitors before they get to Vancouver, so Visitors’ Choice is a tremendous acquisition to be able to increase our reach to those visitors already in the city,” said Vannatter.

“By providing inbound visitor volume to our advertisers, and with the tremendous reach that Visitors’ Choice provides our attraction, museum, activity and restaurant partners, they will be able to see more business walking in their door than ever before.”

City Passports publishes experiential guidebooks for tourism distribution partners, hotels, travel agents, tour operators and conference organizers.

Its mandate is to educate visitors on the history of each destination and to assist them in exploring Canadian attractions and experiences.

City Passports supplies more than 550 attractions and experiences to thousands of tourists each year visiting 29 cities/towns in B.C., Alberta, Ontario and Quebec.

A City Passport provides context to the visitors by outlining the history of the destination. The Vancouver edition includes a history of the city written by the late historian Chuck Davis, along with contributions from the City of Vancouver archive.

“The company’s main market over the past few years has been inbound tour operators and visitors to Vancouver,” Vannatter said.

“Visitors’ Choice clients will have the bonus of being able to access more visitors before they get to the city via the City Passports tourism marketing program, and if we miss the visitor, then we have the reach and distribution to again put our clients in front of those coming to Vancouver.”

Visitors’ Choice Vancouver is published seasonally, three times a year: spring, summer and fall/winter, with distribution throughout the Metro Vancouver region. •