Making travel safe and seamless and restoring trust are key priorities for the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) which has presented a set of guidelines to help the tourism sector emerge from the stronger and more sustainable COVID-19. The guidelines underline the need to act decisively, to restore trust and also, thanks to UNWTO’s intensified collaboration with Google, to harness innovation and the digital transformation of global tourism.
The guidelines have been prepared in consultation with the World Tourism Crisis Committee and aim to support governments and the private sector in recovering from a unique crisis. Depending on when travel restrictions are lifted, the United Nations specialized agency warns that international tourist arrivals could be reduced by 60 to 80 per cent. The situation threatens 100 to 120 million jobs and could result in an export loss of between US$ 910 billion and US$ 1.2 trillion.
Security protocols for tourism recovery
The new guide, a follow-up to the Recommendations for Action previously approved by the Committee, focuses on seven priorities for tourism recovery based on the pillars of mitigating economic impact, developing safety protocols and coordinated responses, and encouraging innovation. These guidelines provide both governments and businesses with a comprehensive set of measures designed to help them reopen tourism in a safe, smooth and responsible manner.
The guidelines emphasize the importance of restoring traveler confidence through security protocols designed to reduce risks in every link of the tourism value chain. These protocols include the implementation of screening procedures where appropriate, including temperature scanners, screening tests, physical distancing, more frequent cleaning and provision of hygiene kits to ensure the safety of air travel, hospitality services or events.
Innovation is key and that is why UNWTO is strengthening its partnership with Google
At the same time, UNWTO is strengthening its partnership with Google. The United Nations agency will work closely with Google to promote e-learning and online training in various skills to open up new opportunities for the global tourism sector as a whole.
The Committee includes representatives from UNWTO Member States and Affiliate Members, as well as from the World Health Organization (WHO), the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the World Bank and the International Maritime Organization (IMO). The private sector is represented by the Airports Council International (ACI), the International Association of Cruise Lines (CLIA), the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) to ensure a coordinated and effective response.