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Published on : Wednesday, October 26, 2016
The World Tourism Day 2016 was recently celebrated by the UNWTO. This year’s theme: “Tourism for All — Promoting Universal Accessibility,” interested everyone associated with the travel and tourism sector. Accessible travel is indeed a necessity and creating special arrangements for disabled travelers is an important need of the hour. Disabled travelers are just like their normal counterparts and there are even disabled business and leisure travelers. For millions of disabled travelers across the world, accessible hotel accommodations are a necessity and not a luxury.
But things are changing slowly. UNWTO says that accessible tourism market in Europe is estimated at approximately 27% of the total population. Currently, travelers with disabilities comprise only 12% of the tourism market. The World Health Organization says that by 2050, nearly a quarter of the people on this planet will be 60 years or older. Adults with disabilities in the U.S. spend more than $17.3 billion on travel annually. And since disabled travelers mostly travel with friends or family, the economic impact of such travelers doubles to $34.6 million.
Hence, catering to travelers with disabilities means good business. Creating awareness about making travel accessible for disabled travelers calls for active support and action from all.