Our official consumer logo is a reflection of Canada today, a study in movement and evolution. Here, we take the country’s pulse and feel a nation’s heart beating, expanding and retracting from our skylines to our forests.
Logo usage grid
This table shows how to choose the right logo for any communications piece. Logo usage falls into two main categories: corporate and marketing. All corporate applications use the corporate logo and the Canada wordmark. For marketing, different logos apply according to the media in which they appear. Learn more about our logos in the following pages.
Official consumer logo
Just like our beautiful country, our logo is a true original. In fact, the typeface was custom-designed and is always paired with Canada’s most iconic symbol—the maple leaf. The white logo on a red background evokes our heart, our passion and our pride.
In situations where the official logo can’t be used, the reverse logo—white on a red background—is equally impactful and can be used for optimal readability.
Logo on red
Canada Red is our primary colour and should always feature prominently in every communication. When the background colour is red, the logo can be any other secondary colour from our palette, except black.
On a red background, the logo must be the same colour
as the lettering.
Logo on our colours
Other colours can be used to showcase the colours of Canadian landscapes throughout the seasons. When the background is a secondary colour, the logo must be red. Canada Red must always take centre stage.
Below please find the minimum sizes for the various logo formats. Note that the avatar and favicon are to be used for smaller web formats only, and exceptionally don’t include the maple leaf element.
The logo must be surrounded by a minimum protection space that’s free of any other visual element. The basic measurement to be used is a square whose sides are equal to the width of the “C” in our logo. For the logo with the maple leaf, 1½ squares are needed above and below, and 2 squares on either side.
1 - The logo must be centered as if the maple leaf is not part of it, with the indicated protection space on all sides.
2 - The logo without maple leaf is only used in social media and uses the protection space as indicated.
You have the freedom to place the logo where it fits best. That said, it should always be placed somewhere along a margin and be fully visible—and of course, the protection space of the poster margins must always be respected.
These layouts are for agencies only.
1 - The official logo should always be aligned along a margin
2 - When typography is an important visual element of a communications piece, the logo must be the same height as the lettering.
Don't even think about
1 - distorting the logo
2 - angling the logo
3 - using special effects like a drop shadow
4 - changing the proportions
5 - changing the language of the tagline
6 - using a contoured version
7 - placing the logo on a competing/clashing colour
8 - using a patterned background
9 - isolating the logo in a box or shape
10 - placing the logo on a busy picture.
The corporate logo’s usage is different than the consumer logo which is primarily to be used for the consumer market. Our business entity is Destination Canada, and that’s how we refer to ourselves in all corporate communications and sponsored content. This logo can be used in combination with other logos. This is the recommended RGB version of the logo.
Reverse corporate logo
In situations where the 4C corporate logo can’t be used, the reverse logo—white on a red background—can be used.
Minimum size and safe space Corporate logo
Below please find the minimum size and safe space for the corporate logo. The logo should always be at least 25 mm (1 in.) across. To determine the safe space at any given size, use the height of the “C” in DESTINATION CANADA.
1 - Minimum size
2 - Safety margins
Pairing the corporate and consumer logos
The corporate logo can be paired with the consumer logos. The height of the corporate logo must be the height of the “C” of the consumer logo.
When paired together, the corporate logo must be equal to the height of
the “C” of the consumer logo.
To be used by Destination Canada only, this wordmark is part of the Government of Canada’s Federal Identity Program, which allows for clear and consistent identification of government institutions. We use this logo in combination with our other logos.
Minimum size and safe space Canada wordmark
Below please find the minimum size for the Canada wordmark as well as the protection space. The wordmark must always be surrounded by a standard protection space that is free of any other visual element. The basic measurement to be used when calculating the protection space around the Canada wordmark is a square whose sides are equal to the height of the “C.”
1 - Minimum size
2 - Safety margins
Pairing the wordmark with our other logos
The Canada wordmark can be paired with both the official and corporate logos. Be sure to respect the sizes of the wordmark indicated below.
1 - When paired with the official logo, the height of the wordmark should be
½ the height of the “C.”
2 - When the consumer and corporate logos are present, the wordmark
should match the corporate logo. When paired with the corporate logo, the
height of the wordmark should be the same height as the “C.”
Partnerships & sponsorships
Whenever we team up with other partners, our logo should be proportionate in size and weight to the others that appear. Red should always be the dominant colour, Suisse Int’l the font, and the protection space must always be respected.
1 - Our logo must match the size and visual impact of all other logos
2 - Red should be the primary colour
3 - Use our font, Suisse Int'l, whenever possible. Its versatility
complements any brand.
Tone and manner
We are the voice of travel for Canada. How we say it is just as important as what we say, so keeping a consistent voice is absolutely vital.
We write this way
We may be Canadian, but we’re unapologetic in the way we share our passion. We speak with conviction and pride, yet we’re always open, warm and welcoming.
* This style of writing is unique to Destination Canada. The partners and content publishers are not required to use it.
Strong verbs build momentum in our audience and incite action. Minimize flowery language that dances around the heart of what we’re trying to say. Use inviting, inclusive language to connect our perspectives and experiences. Destination Canada has one tone of voice, but we express it in different ways in regards to the audience we are addressing based on how they will best receive our message.
We like and we don’t like
We don't like
These are a few examples of how our tagline comes to life in different markets. Though these examples will never appear in our communications, it’s helpful to see the nuanced meaning behind the tagline in other languages.
Canadá, para corazones apasionados.
Our colours run deeper than those found on our flag. They’re a declaration of who we are. And a bold reminder of our presence in the world.
Typography brings weight to the stories we tell. The words we choose are important. But the fonts selected to convey them should never be overlooked.
Canada Bold, our title font
Canada Bold stands out due to its offbeat yet approachable style, used as headlines. Over time, this unique font has the potential to become a strong branding element associated with Destination Canada.
Canada Bold is never to be used in lowercase
Canada Bold is the only weight we use
Canada Bold is not well-suited for long copy.
Suisse Int’l, our content font
Modern and reader-friendly, Suisse Int'l is available in a variety of languages, making it ideal for international markets. As our primary content font, Suisse Int'l is the perfect choice thanks to its versatility and easy-to-read sans serif typeface.
Only use all uppercase letters in exceptional cases
Trade usage of title font
For more conventional usage, block typography should be used and always left-aligned, but can be positioned at the top or bottom.
One word or a few short words per line
Align text left
1 - Line spacing (leading) is 90% (font size x 0.9)
2 - Do not add spacing between the lines
Agency usage of title font
The agency has more creative latitude. However, certain guidelines must still be respected. Text must always start from the upper left-hand corner and move towards the right, and spacing should always be the same height as the lettering. The title font can be used over such things as images, videos, posts and more.
One word or a few short words per line
1 - Line spacing (leading) is 90% (font size x 0.9)
You should add spacing between lines
Text should move from left to right
To ensure better readability, the reading direction must be from left to right.
Though a single powerful image is preferred, this layout system is to be used when there are more than one or two photos in a communications piece. The format is divided into 16 equal rectangles. Half the page will be filled with colour and type, and the other half will be filled with images (1 to 4 photos).
Short and simple headlines will work great here
Do not hesitate to choose one colour from our palette
Graphic elements strengthen our visual identity. They are the building blocks that make our imagery distinctly Canadian and iconic.
Our colours in action
Our secondary colours reflect the beauty of Canada, but remember that red should always be the star and should only ever be paired with one other colour at a time. Below please find examples of how red can be used on another colour and the reverse.
The font and logo should be the same single colour, unless the logo is on a picture, then it should be red
Use squares or rectangles only—see section 2.4.5 for other layout examples
Photo location labels
Canada is full of magical places. In order to make them even more accessible, we like to indicate the location from where each photo was taken, in small type, on the image. It must be subtle but readable, like a credit.
Try to include the region/city and province, but if space allows, you can also include the neighbourhood or park, or specific place name.
When spreading location labels across the image, the space between each location must be the same
Font: Suisse Int'l Semibold
Colour: Always red unless on red, then it should be white
Size: Small, but never smaller than 5 pts
The logo can be staggered, but should always appear in a straight line. Secondary colours may be used, but as always, the red logo must be dominant. Different colour backgrounds can be used as long as all the logos are clearly visible and well contrasted.
Used as a graphic device, only the first three letters of our logo—CAN—may be cropped. They can be cropped at the top or bottom, but they must be legible. Please note that they should never stand on their own; they should always be part of a bigger whole, so it’s obvious what they represent. Furthermore, use of the cropped logo should be limited and employed by DC only.
Only the first three letters can be cropped—never the entire logo
Below see other cropped logo examples on different colour backgrounds. The CAN must be in red or white, and red always has to play a dominant role. The cropped logo can be used in such things as PowerPoint presentations.
Our photography should feel real and spontaneous, almost serendipitous. A shot captured in the moment that brings the viewer closer to the action. We don’t want anything that looks too staged or put together.
Canada is the second largest landmass in the world, so there’s a lot of ground to cover. To keep us focused on the bigger picture, we’ve classified our photographs into 10 distinct categories.
The guiding principle in all photos is to show pride in Canada and the joy of travelling around our great country. The shots should be authentic, not posed, and taken in warm light at dusk or dawn. An emotion, such as happiness, should be conveyed and suggest a deeper story, a moment—a human connection.
Indigenous / Canadian culture
Iconic images of Canada include hockey, Mounties, sweeping landscapes with cowboys, maple trees, totem poles and Indigenous dancers. A sense of warmth should infuse every photo, and they should be natural, not posed. We don’t want photos to appear clichéd. Pops of red would also be appreciated.
Cities are the heartbeat of our country. We want to show action, festivals, people together—people connecting—in an urban environment. Use light to convey warmth, and pops of red to tie the photo in with the brand. Showcase the unique character of the city whenever possible.
Food and drink
Photos should depict meals and experiences being shared—the connection between people gathering around good food and drink, in settings large and small. Close-ups and wide shots may be used, but the viewer should feel the warmth and have the sense that they’re also taking part in the action.
Visitors can experience the diversity of Canada through the wide range of activities to be enjoyed here. Photos should show a variety of settings—summer or winter, city or country, land or sea. Shots should be natural, not posed, and give the viewer the impression that they are involved in what’s going on. It’s also important to convey the feeling that the activity depicted is accessible to all.
Attractions and landmarks
The Château Frontenac, Peggy’s Cove, the CN Tower—Canada’s most iconic landmarks and attractions are already easily recognizable, so the goal is to show them in an unexpected way. This can be achieved by using different angles and perspectives, or infusing the image with warmth by shooting at dusk or dawn. The shot shouldn’t appear too curated—it should set a mood.
In these shots, the incredible natural beauty of Canada is the star of the show. It’s always preferable to include people in the shot so that the viewer can fully appreciate the scale of what they’re looking at. And there’s an embarrassment of riches to choose from—Rockies, Prairies, the ocean, Northern Lights and more. Try using different angles and shooting at dusk or dawn. Warmth should be felt—even when it is overcast.
Visitors can take the road less travelled through Canada’s stunning National Parks to experience the vastness, diversity, beauty and tranquility of our spectacular country. Canada is huge, so these shots should highlight that by using wide angles, including people to show scale, and expressing warmth across sweeping landscapes in different seasons. Even a glacier can glow!
Wildlife / animals
Thanks to its diverse climate and geography, Canada is blessed with a wide variety of wildlife. These shots should demonstrate that visitors can easily get close to nature and our beautiful animals, and that they don’t have to travel very far to see them in their natural habitat. Catching the animals off guard—at rest or at play, from far away or up close—will show how impressive they all are.
These images are for inspiration purposes only.
Photographs should highlight real and raw emotions, where the camera is part of the action. We also want to feature people wherever possible, even if they appear as a small speck on larger landscape imagery. By focusing on humans, travellers can see themselves in our photography and thus, stimulate their appetite for travel. In addition, we should always have a touch of red in our images, hinting to our national colours. Red should not be overwhelming in the composition, but rather a nice wink to our Canadian roots.
Lighting: Warm light
Glowing. Luminous. Radiant. The objective is to always evoke warmth and illumination through the elements in the photo—sun, water, snow. Even in images depicting nighttime, a feeling of warmth should always shine through.
Lighting: Glowing skies
Once again, the skies of Canada should exude warmth, which is why dusk and dawn are favoured to showcase our magical, magnificent country. These special times of day convey natural warmth and have a comforting feel. On an overcast day, for example, the sun should still be felt through the clouds, which can bring texture to a photo.
Composition: Feeling close
The images should give the viewer the impression that they are also part of the action. The photos should be shot close up for greater impact—to better appreciate the feelings of the subjects portrayed. The shots should be authentic, not staged, and convey real emotions.
Composition: Unusual angles
Using unexpected angles helps to reinvent iconic landmarks and images—to literally see things in a different way. These types of shots can be used as part of a mosaic, where a supporting image makes it clear that this is Canada rather than a random image from anywhere in the world. Unusual angles are also a great device to make the viewer feel as though they’re part of the action.
Composition: Small and big
Canada is a big, beautiful country. In our photos, the vastness of the landscapes should be contrasted with the size of the people. People should be included as much as possible so that the viewer can appreciate the scale and textures.
Use of red
Whenever possible, pops of red should be included in the photos to tie them in with our official colour, Canadian Flag Red, and our logo so that the brand is immediately recognizable. But be careful not to overdo it—the splash of colour can be as subtle as a hat or tablecloth.
Video is a particularly powerful medium to tell stories that make emotional connections. By forging these connections we believe that potential travellers will fall in love with Canada, even before setting foot here. To put it another way: we aim for the heart.
With our shift to transformational travel and focus on storytelling, not to mention the ever crowded content space, we want our videos to have a purpose and to follow a narrative arc. Effective stories have a clear purpose that can be conveyed simply. We know through review of performance statistics that videos with an exciting opening that hooks in a viewer and gives them a reason to watch through to conclusion perform better against our engagement metric.
Each piece of content needs to work towards a goal and have an intersection between a place and people to support the narrative arc. These stories can be told through the perspective of travellers visiting Canada or personal stories of Canadians. And by focusing more on Canada and Canadians, we are creating content that is more readily shareable across markets.
Our foremost priority is delivering interesting and visually stunning material. When possible, we should find interesting ways to film our content making it stand out among other destination brands. We want to highlight the unique places and people across the country, be it by using interesting angles, non traditional camera positions and drones, GoPros or underwater to supplement additional B-roll imagery.
Coordinates may be added to indicate where a shot was taken, but only if they can be legible. Follow the rules in section 2.5.4. DC or partner agencies must approve this add-on before it is published.
We should apply the same colour grading across our films so they feel cohesive. It should be clear that our films are ours, stamped with our brand and with our signature look and feel. To maintain consistency, we always need to access raw, ungraded footage shot in high-resolution formats from all our owned and partner shoots.
Shooting in the early morning or at sunset is a great way to get glowing shots.
The video signature should begin by evoking the grandeur/breadth of the landscape, taking up the entire width of the frame.In subsequent frames it will become animated and transform into the official logo, with or without the tagline. No other copy should appear. Contact DC to obtain the animated logos.