The dire staffing shortage for the rapidly approaching ski season has been well-documented. Lest you think this was just a problem at American ski hills, Canadian ski resorts are facing the same staffing challenges.
The Canadian Ski Council states that an estimated 30% of positions at Canadian resorts will go unfilled. Resorts will fully staff lift operations but other areas of the businesses will be hit hard. Food and beverage, as well as hospitality, will have the biggest staffing issues with some hills offering limited hours, food options, and reduced seating capacity. Some hotels might not be able to fill all of their rooms.
The root of the problem is the ski industry’s reliance on foreign workers. People come from all over the world to work for the winter in Canada. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the government is only processing a limited amount of visas for foreign workers. Employers are asking Ottawa to speed up the process or extend existing work visas that are due to expire. After all, this labor shortage could have negative effects on the economy.