U.S. border towns still wait for buyers from B.C., as Vancouver shopping buses vanish

Cross-border shopping buses filled with Chinese and Korean-Canadian consumers were once ubiquitous outside Washington state malls, but they have all-but disappeared from the commercial landscape, dealing a heavy blow to border-town businesses.

The removal of COVID-19 restrictions at the border late last year has boosted the number of Canadians making land crossings to the United States, but consumers and tour operators say the pandemic may have altered people’s travel and purchasing behaviour, greatly diminishing demand for one-day shopping tours south of the border.

Malls and shops in Whatcom County directly south of Vancouver said while they are seeing more Canadians since last fall, the absence of tour buses was particularly noticeable.


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