The 7 Priorities to Reactivate Tourism by Destinations

With the world desperately preparing to restart the business, tourism is an industry in which many are counting their bets to stabilise jobs, markets and drive the flow of progress in recovery. The World Tourism Organisation (UNTO) set out the seven priorities that destinations and tourism boards should focus on to ensure the safety of travellers while restoring the trust of their destination as a safe place.

UNTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili said:

“These guidelines provide both governments and businesses with a comprehensive set of measures designed to help them open tourism again in a safe, fluid and responsible manner. They are the product of enhanced cooperation that has characterised tourism’s response to this shared challenge, based on knowledge and input from the public and private sectors and various UN agencies as part of the broader UN response.”

1.  Provide liquidity and protect jobs

The World Tourism Organisation’s first priority scheme is to create specific tourism support schemes for small businesses, entrepreneurs and freelancers. It urges government decision-makers and those at the top of the value chain to provide exceptions, reductions or deferrals of tax and social security payments, as well as critical bills for businesses, freelancers and workers (especially the most vulnerable),  liquidity and protect jobs. 

 2. Regain trust through security and protection

This priority focuses on destinations using human-centred communication with empathy, peace of mind, and connection to create campaigns aimed at building trust in the traveller, including safety actions were taken by destinations and companies, with a special mention to the establishment of safety and hygiene protocols, to minimise any risk throughout the value chain of tourism and at every step of the traveller’s journey.

 3. Public-private collaboration for efficient reopening

The third priority emphasises the need for a more shared exchange of knowledge and best practices through public-private collaboration so that actionable health and safety protocols are followed correctly. It also marks the need for government to share data with businesses, stronger information systems so that companies, destinations and hospitality staff can be aligned with rules and new security procedures.

 4. Open borders with responsibility

 For open borders, this priority calls on governments and autonomous regions to move forward in facilitating travel to e-visa/visa policies on arrival/visa-free and temporarily eliminate visa costs to stimulate demand. Ask tourism boards to introduce and adapt actionable border processes and procedures by public healthEvidence-based risk assessment.

 5. Harmonise and coordinate local protocols with international standards

The fifth priority urges Governments to ensure regional and international coordination so that common policies followed among tourism, health, home and transport authorities must be in line with global health protocols and procedures. Encourage destination managers and tourism boards to set up visitor tracking applications and work to achieve their international interoperability.

6. Create value through digital transformation

The sixth priority urges companies to accelerate digital transformation and adopt new profiles in the digital space. It focuses on the need to provide free online training to train staff in their required industries through a partnership with universities, technology companies and other educational and training institutions such as the UNTO Online Academy and support the development and marketing of multi-language courses.

7. Adapt innovation and sustainability as the new standard

As innovation and technology are a game-changer and the saviour for pandemic recovery, the latest priority emphasises the need for governments to consolidate the national and global innovation ecosystem by investing in digital transformation for better destination planning and management. It calls on businesses, businesses and governments to foster open innovation through the participation of new companies and the promotion of innovative solutions that are easier and faster to implement. It also highlights the need to make the transition to a more circular economy in the tourism value chain and more resource-efficient and low-carbon tourism to adapt and mitigate the climate crisis.



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