World Tourism Day is observed today with “Tourism and Rural Development” as the theme for this year. This day is observed on the 27th of September every year to celebrate the unique role that tourism plays in providing opportunities outside of big cities and preserving cultural and natural heritage all around the world.
This year’s Tourism Day comes at a critical moment, as countries around the world look to tourism to drive recovery, including in rural communities.
According to the United Nations, the pandemic outlines a chance to rethink the future of the tourism sector, including how it contributes to the sustainable development aims, through its social, cultural, political, and economic value.
Tourism and rural development.
The situation is specifically arduous for youth: young people in rural communities are three times better likely to be unemployed than older adults. Tourism is a lifeline, offering young people an outlook to earn a living without having to migrate either within their home countries or abroad.
World Tourism Day 2020 will once again be observed by UNWTO’s Member States in all global regions as well as by cities and additional destinations and by private sector organizations and individual tourists. It comes as communities in rural areas likewise struggle with the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
These communities are constantly regularly less-prepared to deal with the shortened and longer-term impacts of the crisis. This is due to several factors, comprising their aging populations, lower income levels, and the continuing ‘ digital divide’. Tourism offers a solution to all of these hurdles.