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Recognize the benefits of tourism in September

Signpost is made of old worn shoes, the distance to the citiesWhen: September 27

What: Summer vacation is an American standard in full swing right now, and it accounts for a large percentage of revenue and jobs in many regions. But travel doesn’t just happen in the summer, it happens all year long. Take time this Sept. 27 to recognize the importance of tourism in growing local economies and fostering sustainable development during World Tourism Day.

Background: The UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) General Assembly established World Tourism Day in 1980 as a way to increase awareness of tourism’s importance and of its social, cultural, political and economic value. This year, the theme is tourism and community development, examining the role tourism plays in empowering people and changing local communities.

Story Pitch: Given this year’s theme, businesses working in hospitality or travel will want to take this day to promote themselves by partnering with a community development organization in the regions where they operate. Groups working to invite local tourism can focus on promoting positive tourism in their region. Holding a competition for photos, essays or other creative works inspired by the region can be a great way to showcase a region’s unique elements and the pride that citizens have in living there. Since many tourist destinations are in developing nations and rural communities, this day is of particular interest to groups that focus on economic development. These organizations can share success stories that show how tourism can support local culture and reach beyond immediate jobs and economics in order to help a community thrive.

Story Hook: World tourism day takes place in September to maximize the overlap in vacation seasons around the world. How can tourism in one region impact another? Keep the following in mind while making your pitch:

  • How can tourism have a positive impact on a community?
  • How can people look for travel opportunities that most directly benefit the host community?
  • How can infrastructure, taxes and other wider economic issues be affected by tourism?
  • What is ecotourism, and how does it differ from more traditional travel?

Tips: Be sure to provide contact information for tour agents and people who plan to travel, as well as people who have improved their communities by promoting tourism.

Resources:

Centre for Sustainable Tourism and Transportation
cstt(at)nhtv.nl
www.cstt.nl

Global Sustainable Tourism Council
info(at)gstcouncil.org
www.gstcouncil.org

The International Ecotourism Society
(202) 506-5033
media(at)ecotourism.org
www.ecotourism.org

UNWTO World Tourism Day
comm(at)unwto.org
http://wtd.unwto.org/content/world-tourism-day-2014

–Researched, compiled & written by Nicholas Testa
Event Dates  from CHASE’S Calendar of Events

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