Travel industry urged to maximise use of technology
The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has called on the travel industry to maximise the power of technology to create jobs for the industry.
The calls coincided with the UNTWO’s World Tourism Day, where WTTC CEO and president Gloria Guevara joined Zurab Pololikashvili, secretary-general, World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), and Csaba Domotor, State Secretary, Office of the Prime Minister, at the opening ceremony in Budapest, Hungary.
This year’s World Tourism Day celebrated a sector that contributes 10.4% of the world’s GDP and generates 313 million jobs. In terms of GDP growth, the Travel & Tourism industry has outpaced the global economy by 4.6% for the seventh successive year. This year’s event also brought together industry leaders and members of government to discuss Tourism and the Digital Transformation.
Guevara said: “I am grateful to my industry peers who have realised the impact of technology and want to thank UNWTO secretary-general Zurab Pololikashvili for prioritising this issue as we work together to harness innovation and digital advances.
“Technology has changed the way we travel and WTTC Members are powering travel. In one day, there are 15 million Uber rides, 15.2 million Trip Advisor visits, and 22.5 million visits to Expedia sites.
“Our industry needs to maximise the power of technology and innovation to increase the benefits of Travel & Tourism. By capitalising on this opportunity, we can create more jobs and ensure growth is sustainable and inclusive.”
IATA reported 4.1 billion passengers were flown in 2017, a new record, with a promising forecast to reach 7.8 billion passengers by 2036 worldwide. At the same time, the UNWTO anticipates a rise in international visitor arrivals from 1.3 billion in 2017 to 1.8 billion by 2030. Travel & Tourism’s GDP grew 50% more than the world economy in 2017 at 4.6% and the projections indicate that Travel & Tourism will continue to outpace global economy growth in the future.
“We have the potential to double the number of air passengers and increase the number of travellers around the world,” added Guevara.
“Travel & Tourism is the best partner for growth, and our recently published Country Power and Performance report illustrates the economic impact our sector has on 185 countries.”
To read the UNWTO’s take on World Tourism Day developments, click here.