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However, the vast majority (90%) are concerned about the negative impact on the global economy, the Canadian economy (76%) and the worldwide travel industry (95%)

Vancouver, BC — As the coronavirus gets upgraded to a global health emergency and teeters on the verge of becoming a worldwide pandemic, British Columbia residents are watching developments closely, and while most are not concerned about it impacting them personally, much more are concerned about the negative impact on the travel industry, and the global and Canadian economies according to findings of a new survey conducted by Insights West over this past weekend.

Nearly all BC residents are aware of this developing story and are following it closely (82%; including the 34% who are following it very closely), only 17% say they are not following it closely.  But at this point in time, most (53%) residents are not overly worried about the coronavirus, but a sizeable minority (47%) is concerned—including 8% who are ‘very worried’ about it.  Similar, but slightly lower numbers are worried about this virus impacting them personally or others who are close to them (42%; including 9% who are ‘very worried’ about it).  The level of concern is universal—crossing age and gender groups.

The potential impact of this virus economically is very concerning, and the vast majority of residents are very alarmed about how it will affect the travel industry and the overall economy.  A massive number of people (95%) feel that the virus will have a negative impact on the travel industry—including 57% who believe it will have a major negative impact on the global travel industry, and a further 38% think it will have a minor negative impact.  In fact, 39% of British Columbians say that the outbreak will have either a major (15%) or minor (23%) impact on their future travel plans.

Equally weighing on citizens is the prospect that the coronavirus will have a negative impact on both the global economy (90%)—where 34% feel it will have a major negative impact (the remaining 56% say it will have a minor negative impact).  Closer to home, the impact isn’t perceived to be quite as impactful, as 76% feel the Canadian economy will be faced with either a major negative impact (18%), or a minor one (58%).

“Although it’s in early days for the coronavirus as a global health emergency, the general public in British Columbia is approaching this cautiously, and we haven’t turned up the alarm bells to full volume—yet.  says Steve Mossop, president of Insights West.  “Overall, citizens feel that they are somewhat protected, as only a minority feel personally vulnerable to the virus.  More concerning is the high level of worry about the impact on the Canadian economy and the global economy.  As residents have already started to take action with respect to their travel plans—this could have a massive trickle-down effect on the overall global economy moving forward.”

About Insights West:

Insights West is a full-service marketing research firm based in Western Canada. Since 2012, the company has conducted over one million surveys, executed 2,000 studies, and issued over 350 press releases on a variety of topics, correctly predicting the outcomes of 24 out of 25 elections and plebiscites. Insights West is a team of passionate, truth-seeking researchers who question everything to uncover the truth and what is emerging for a diverse set of clients. With an understanding of shifting markets, consumer and societal trends, and commitment to uncovering truths through a proprietary toolkit and innovative research approaches, Insights West helps organizations make better decisions.

About this Release:

Results are based on an online study conducted from January 30 to February 03, 2020 among a representative sample of 818n BC adults. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 2.4 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Discrepancies between totals are due to rounding. Click HERE to view the detailed data tabulations.


For further information, please contact:

Steve Mossop
Insights West