Who We Are

BAN-NI-KIN (noun)

1. Slang. Small tin cup.
2. Niche travel and tourism group enhancing the business of small operators, emerging destinations and hotel properties.

Small cup. Big ideas.

Bannikin Travel & Tourism ltd. has been in operation since 2010 and has built a reputation as a leading travel trade development, content and storytelling, media relations and destination development firm specializing in experiential tourism and responsible travel.

We are a small but mighty team of six tourism professionals. We have DMO, agent, operator & destination clients spanning the globe. We work primarily with niche travel & tourism suppliers in the experiential travel space, particularly those who value responsible tourism practices.

Our clients know that we are here as a solution to challenges, such as limited resources – time, money, sales networks, etc. – by providing tourism-specific, highly-specialized support. Support is focused in four key areas: destination development, travel trade market development, content marketing and media relations.

Bannikin is built on a love for travel and a great respect for destinations and entrepreneurs who provide high-quality travel experiences. Like you, we understand the benefits to local residents, the local economy and conservation if tourism is developed sustainably and strategically. Bannikin works with destinations and businesses at all stages of the tourism life cycle, from development, through to implementation, delivery to market and market management.

  • Jillian DickensJillian DickensCEO

    Jillian Dickens

    CEO

    Bachelor of Journalism, Langara College, Vancouver

    Jillian Dickens brings more than 14 years’ experience in story-telling, product design and stakeholder engagement for sustainably focused destinations and tour operators to Bannikin. A newspaper reporter by trade, Jillian got her start in tourism at the Canadian Arctic DMO Nunavut Tourism, designing and implementing the destination’s marketing and media relations strategies.

    As CEO of Bannikin, Jillian plays a vital role in supporting all departments and team members. She brings her wealth of experience in destination development, media relations, trade development and content creation, resulting in well-rounded oversight and leadership. She has built her business with intention, to work with small suppliers whose values, ethos and operations align with those of Bannikin; responsible tourism development, transformative travel and overall, good people, are all part of the equation.

    Want to get in touch with Jillian? Email: jillian@bannikin.com

  • Terrilyn KunopaskiTerrilyn KunopaskiDIRECTOR & TRADE DEVELOPMENT

    Terrilyn Kunopaski

    DIRECTOR & TRADE DEVELOPMENT

    Bachelor of Journalism, Ryerson University

    Terrilyn is a seasoned travel industry professional, with nearly 10 years’ experience building partnerships with travel trade. She kicked-off her career with a B2B-facing travel media platform and more recently she was  the editor-in-chief of Canadian Traveller (B2C) and CT magazines (B2B). During her tenure, she worked on brand & business development and content strategy, laying the path to record-sales success. She was part of the team to launch Canada’s first travel-focused subscription box, Experience The World, and also helped spearhead the launch of the innovative B2B platform, Key Notes On Travel.

    Terrilyn has been a contributing travel expert to various major television and radio programs in Canada, and continues to be called upon for her expertise.

    In October 2018, she was an event organizer for “Let’s Get Uncomfortable: Discussing Gender Equity and Equality in Canada’s Travel Industry” and she continues to advocate for greater diversity and equality in tourism.

    Want to get in touch with Terrilyn? E-mail: terrilyn@bannikin.com.

  • Zach VanasseZach VanasseMANAGER, CREATIVE & MARKETING

    Zach VanasseZach Vanasse Twitter

    MANAGER, CREATIVE & MARKETING

    Bachelor of Arts, Professional Writing & Translation, Université de Sherbrooke

    Zach Vanasse is a marketing and creative content specialist with a decade’s worth of experience in the travel industry. He leads the content marketing department, spearheading content creation, branding and storytelling strategy. He also works to connect travel organizations with sustainability leaders around the world and has worked to develop sustainability programs and initiatives for travel companies.

    Before joining Bannikin, he served as an editor with PAX News and PAX Magazine where he worked with industry leaders and innovators, gaining insider’s appreciation for the inner workings of the travel industry. As a journalist, he developed personal relationships with many of the travel industry’s thought leaders, directors and influencers. In his role as editor, he collaborated with a variety of industry organizations ranging from tourism boards to tour operators.

    He is a founding board member of PropelTO and served as a founding board member and president of the Young Travel Professionals – Toronto chapter.

    Want to get in touch with Zach? Email: zach@bannikin.com

  • Britney HopeBritney HopeMANAGER, MEDIA RELATIONS

    Britney Hope

    MANAGER, MEDIA RELATIONS

    Bachelor of Fine Arts, Ryerson University

    Britney is a media relations specialist and award-winning travel writer with communications experience in B2C and B2B travel markets. She served as the editorial and communications associate for Logimonde Media and has contributed tourism analysis features to TravelAge West and ASTA Magazine, as well as established her own column on sustainable tourism for CT Magazine. She has also served as the editor for Ensemble Travel Group’s collection of aspirational family, wedding and luxury travel-focused marketing materials. Her work has also appeared in Canadian Traveller, NUVO and America, Yours to Discover.

    Britney’s work in media relations has been similarly varied; she has collaborated as a PR and content consultant with brands such as The Curtain London, Gaansevoort Meatpacking New York, Tradewinds, Silversea cruises, Travel Professionals International and TravelEdge.

    In October 2018, she was an event organizer for “Let’s Get Uncomfortable: Discussing Gender Equity and Equality in Canada’s Travel Industry” and plans to continue her advocacy for greater diversity and equality in tourism.

    Want to get in touch with Britney? Email: britney@bannikin.com

  • Erin MorawetzErin MorawetzACCOUNT MANAGER, MEDIA RELATIONS

    Erin MorawetzErin Morawetz Twitter

    ACCOUNT MANAGER, MEDIA RELATIONS

    Bachelor of Arts Honours, Queen’s University
    Master of Journalism, Carleton University

    Erin is a skilled communications and media relations professional with extensive experience in influencer marketing, social media marketing, and media relations in the tourism industry.

    After several years working in government communications, Erin kicked off her career in the travel industry leading content and strategy at an Asia-based boutique travel PR agency. Erin went on to lead all marketing and PR efforts for the Women in Travel Summit (WITS), working closely with Visit Milwaukee and Québec City Tourism to promote their destination in the media and to attendees, and increasing both earned media and delegate ticket sales. During this time, Erin also managed brand relationships for Wanderful, the women’s travel community behind WITS, developing strategic partnerships and managing multi-influencer campaigns for clients including Hostelling International, Visit Ann Arbor, Roadtrek, and Flightbucks.

    Erin has also facilitated a social impact trip to Zambia with Unearth the World and has given guest lectures to hospitality and tourism college programs on influencer marketing. She also writes about travelling the world with a life-threatening peanut allergy, with the goal to help others with a peanut allergy to do so, as well.

    Want to get in touch with Erin? Email: erin@bannikin.com

  • Natasha MartinNatasha MartinDESTINATION DEVELOPMENT EXPERT

    Natasha Martin

    DESTINATION DEVELOPMENT EXPERT

    Concordia University - BA Honors in African History
    Master of Tourism Administration - George Washington University

    Natasha is a senior marketing consultant with a decade of experience in the adventure tourism sector. She has worked for destinations, associations and tourism companies around the world from Greenland to Namibia, to help create inspiration at each stage of the customer journey – and ensure that tourism development supports environmental conservation, cultural heritage preservation and enhances the lives of local residents.

    Natasha managed Bannikin’s Hong Kong office for two years before a family move took her to Cambodia. She now supports Bannikin on an ad-hoc basis on destination development projects.

    She is also an AdventureEDU educator, and frequently lectures on the topic of social media for tourism. She has delivered marketing workshops in Namibia, Myanmar, Peru, Ethiopia and Uganda on tourism marketing.

    Want to get in touch with Natasha? Email: natasha@bannikin.com