“By staying home today, we can travel tomorrow,” that’s the message from the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).
Using the hashtag #TravelTomorrow, the UNWTO is sending out a message of solidarity and hope, and calling for shared responsibility among travellers and the tourism sector around the world to deal with the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
Discovering different cultures, practicing solidarity and respect, caring for the environment, continuing to learn, fostering decent work, development and sustainability and generating new opportunities for all are the core values of tourism advocated by the UNWTO and which constitute the main pillars of the #TravelTomorrow campaign.
And #TravelTomorrow has become the common thread that runs through the UNWTO’s response to the current crisis, highlighting the enduring values of tourism.
The UNWTO says that “Our response must be fast, coherent and united so that we can all travel again” and “this online campaign has had a massive impact on social networks and is being embraced by a growing number of countries, destinations and companies linked to tourism, cities, media outlets and individuals from all over the world.”
Already countries such as Germany, Morocco, Mongolia, Oman and Uruguay, as well as cities such as Bogotá or Vienna, have endorsed the hashtag #TravelTomorrow, amplifying the voice of tourism, which is united in the face of this unprecedented global challenge.
A digital resource platform has been created to provide different options for any individual, business or institutional user to join this initiative, offering elements such as images for social media profiles, electronic signatures, as well as relevant audio-visual content on tourism and COVID-19, all available here.
UNWTO secretary-general, Zurab Pololikashvili said: “Historically, tourism has proven itself as a key driver of international recovery, and as early as now, we must begin to prepare in order to build the foundations of the future resilience of tourism.”
The Global Tourism Crisis Committee (GTCC), chaired by the UNWTO, has also supported this initiative within the framework of the recommendations it has developed to address this crisis.
Said Pololikashivili: “Our response must be fast, coherent and united so that we can all travel again soon and do so in a safer, more sustainable and more respectful way, learning from the lessons of the current crisis.”
Already, the GTCC’s recommendation include the need for financial and political support for recovery measures aimed at the tourism sector, in coordination with international development organizations, in order to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on employment, protect the most vulnerable segments of society and accelerate recovery.
At the same time, however, it’s important for policies and actions to ensure the promotion of sustainable development, in line with the mandate of the UNWTO, especially at the beginning of the Decade of Action—ten years to achieve the 17 Sustainable Development Goals deriving from the 2030 Agenda.