Letter: Kelowna Chamber clarifies travel arrangements

Our programs enhance our travel industry partners…They all, including Wells Gray Tours, make money from tours, and that money stays locally.

To the editor:

In response to a letter from Wells Gray Tours (Kelowna Chamber Uses US Company to Arrange Travel, April 8 Kelowna Capital News) citing that the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce is taking business outside of the community, we would like to clarify points where the author of the letter is mistaken.

The Kelowna Chamber of Commerce has a fair and transparent process for bids for our Travel and Learn program. All bidders must be members of the Kelowna Chamber and they know what the rules are when they bid.

People understand that it is a competitive world and competitive bidding process, not everyone wins the bid.

Most recently the bid for a trip to Iceland offered 12 days notice to bid and three companies responded within that time line.

Wells Gray Tours was not able to respond within this timeline despite a two-week extension.

We were delighted to work with Wells Gray previously on the second trip we hosted to China. They are an excellent company with a long history. The current trip is with a local travel agent, Marlin Travel, which is working with tour operator Collette Tours, a Canadian company of 25 years, headquartered in Ontario and with an office in Surrey.

It is unfortunate Mr. Neave seemed unaware of all the details.  Our travel programs actually enhance our travel industry partners through our extensive marketing programs, information sessions, online advertising and other media promotion. They all, including Wells Gray Tours, make money from tours, and that money stays locally.

Tour money goes to airlines, hotels, restaurants and tour guides in the destination cities. A fee is also paid to the tour operator, and to the Chamber, in addition to the fees kept by the local travel agents.

We welcome suggestions and feedback from our membership as part of our regular review of processes and look forward to working with our member Wells Gray Tours and others in the years ahead.

Caroline Grover, CEO

Kelowna Chamber of Commerce


Just Posted

Late night confrontation between two men in Peachland

RCMP was called to the scene of a physcial encounter on Saturday evening where one man was injured

Kelowna hotel suffers water damage

Guests at the Royal Anne Hotel in Bernard were greeted by firefighters last night

Human remains found at Silver Creek property

RCMP have been searching the property in the 2200 block of Salmon River Road for the past three days

Hodge: You can’t make this stuff up

Kelowna columnist with a story that proves in life, it’s never too late

UPDATED: Man dies after struck by vehicle

A man died after being hit by a vehicle in West Kelowna

VIDEO: Sears liquidation sales continue across B.C.

Sales are expected to continue into the New Year

Who is Curtis Sagmoen?

The Observer reveals what we know about the man attached to the Silver Creek property where human remains were found

VIDEO: Oprah Winfrey and a celebrities attend ‘B.C. Miracle Concert’

Fundraiser featured Foster, Steven Tyler, The Tenors, Matteo Bocelli, Laura Bretan, Carly Rae Jepsen

First-place Warriors edge Caps, visit ‘Backs today

West Kelowna scores twice in 25 seconds early in third to overtake Cowichan Valley in BCHL action

Grab a book; thank your librarian

All libraries are cornerstones of their communities and we celebrate them during library month

Five decades of volunteering

Even though she is approaching 70, Merle kindred continues to volunteer around the world

Twarynski trick sends Rockets past ‘Hawks

Rockets end five-game winless streak with victory Friday over Portland

Vehicle leaves scene after striking lamp post

After hitting a lamp post on Springfield Road, a vehicle has left the scene

New B.C. acute care centre opens for young patients, expectant mothers

Facility aims to make B.C. Children’s Hospital visits more comfortable

Most Read