What a difference a dollar makes. Officials say the decline of the Canadian dollar, is affecting the number of visitors to the United States.
Officials say travel has been declining for two years. They believe it is because of the weak Canadian dollar.
Currently, the Canadian dollar is at 73 cents, for every one U.S. dollar.
Philip Becker is the General Manager at the International Bridge Administration, in Sault Ste Marie.
He says “with a weak Canadian dollar, as the Canadian-US exchange rate decreases, Canadians lose buying power and are less motivated to shop, to travel and to entertain in the United States. The Canadian dollar has been below 80 cents U.S. for all of 2015.”
Becker says the decline in traffic started when the Canadian dollar started to lose value in 2013.
“The correlation we see is that every one cent change in the value of the Canadian dollar, there’s a one percent change in bridge traffic. For this year we’re expecting total traffic to drop to about 1.6 million crossings” says Becker.
Becker says the International Bridge has seen a traffic decrease of 20.5% over the last year.
The bridge reported more than 2 million crossings, in 2011 through 2013.