Read us | Listen to us | Watch us | Join Live Events | Turn Off Ads | Live |

Click on your language to translate this article:

Afrikaans Afrikaans Albanian Albanian Amharic Amharic Arabic Arabic Armenian Armenian Azerbaijani Azerbaijani Basque Basque Belarusian Belarusian Bengali Bengali Bosnian Bosnian Bulgarian Bulgarian Catalan Catalan Cebuano Cebuano Chichewa Chichewa Chinese (Simplified) Chinese (Simplified) Chinese (Traditional) Chinese (Traditional) Corsican Corsican Croatian Croatian Czech Czech Danish Danish Dutch Dutch English English Esperanto Esperanto Estonian Estonian Filipino Filipino Finnish Finnish French French Frisian Frisian Galician Galician Georgian Georgian German German Greek Greek Gujarati Gujarati Haitian Creole Haitian Creole Hausa Hausa Hawaiian Hawaiian Hebrew Hebrew Hindi Hindi Hmong Hmong Hungarian Hungarian Icelandic Icelandic Igbo Igbo Indonesian Indonesian Irish Irish Italian Italian Japanese Japanese Javanese Javanese Kannada Kannada Kazakh Kazakh Khmer Khmer Korean Korean Kurdish (Kurmanji) Kurdish (Kurmanji) Kyrgyz Kyrgyz Lao Lao Latin Latin Latvian Latvian Lithuanian Lithuanian Luxembourgish Luxembourgish Macedonian Macedonian Malagasy Malagasy Malay Malay Malayalam Malayalam Maltese Maltese Maori Maori Marathi Marathi Mongolian Mongolian Myanmar (Burmese) Myanmar (Burmese) Nepali Nepali Norwegian Norwegian Pashto Pashto Persian Persian Polish Polish Portuguese Portuguese Punjabi Punjabi Romanian Romanian Russian Russian Samoan Samoan Scottish Gaelic Scottish Gaelic Serbian Serbian Sesotho Sesotho Shona Shona Sindhi Sindhi Sinhala Sinhala Slovak Slovak Slovenian Slovenian Somali Somali Spanish Spanish Sudanese Sudanese Swahili Swahili Swedish Swedish Tajik Tajik Tamil Tamil Telugu Telugu Thai Thai Turkish Turkish Ukrainian Ukrainian Urdu Urdu Uzbek Uzbek Vietnamese Vietnamese Welsh Welsh Xhosa Xhosa Yiddish Yiddish Yoruba Yoruba Zulu Zulu

Travel Future: Tourism is a force for good

Travel Future: Tourism is a force for good
Travel Future: Tourism is a force for good
Written by Harry S. Johnson

The travel and tourism sector must show how it can help economies to rebuild – and stop being seen as victims or villains, say industry bosses.

The sector must demonstrate its importance in destinations around the world, which are threatened by instability because of job losses and sustainability concerns.

That was the message from WTM Virtual, during a session called Travel Future: Balancing Risk & Restoring Confidence.

Talking about the importance of a sustainable future, Luis Araujo, President of Turismo de Portugal, said: “We need to stop being seen as victims or villains.

“The only way to change this is to understand tourism is a force for good. If not, we will lose jobs and there will be social instability.

“I hope tourism will be seen as force for the economy and help solve problems.”

John de Vial, Director of Membership and Financial Services at ABTA, commented:

“Sustainable development can go hand in hand with consumer demand. We can help the recovery of destination communities around the world.”

He pointed to ABTA’s new ‘Tourism for Good’ report and its Travelife sustainability certification scheme as examples of how the sector is helping destinations.

Panellists agreed that collaboration between public and private sectors, as well as governments around the world, was vital to develop consumer confidence and open up international travel.

Alan French, UK CEO at Thomas Cook, said: “Consumer confidence underpins everything but there is no single silver bullet.”

He said it was vital that consumers can trust they will be refunded if holiday plans need to change – and there must be coordinated agreements between countries about testing programmes.

One country held up as a good example is Singapore.

Carrie Kwik, Europe Executive Director at Singapore Tourism Board, said private and public collaboration has been key in developing health protocols, contact tracing, widespread testing and a nationwide accreditation scheme for businesses.

The panellists agreed that technology used during the pandemic, such as virtual and augmented reality, will remain important in marketing and product development.

Kwik said the success of online events may mean that hybrid events may prove a long-term feature in the future – and more digital nomads will choose to spend longer periods working overseas.

French forecast fewer two-week sunshine holidays as people increasingly opt for more

experiential breaks, and de Vial said: “We’ve learnt how to work from home; that’s a game changer for combining travel and life.”

Araujo concluded: “This is the moment to prepare for the future…but the big concern is a lack of coordination and cooperation. “Our biggest competition is not our neighboring countries; it is fear; we fight fear with clear coordination from all sectors.”