Explaining in several paragraphs why accessibility in tourism is not important just in tourism…
It is a well-known fact that Tourism is one of the fastest growing industries that provides economic, environmental and social benefits at local and global scales. As well as benefits from one hand, from the other there are also negative impacts, which is not the situation in the case I am going to comment below.
Today, accessibility is one of the major trends in tourism. There have been a lot discussed, researched and written about the Accessibility in Tourism topic, but people started to get more conscious about this issue just a couple of years ago.
Accessibility in tourism is important for several reasons. First and the most obvious one is that it gives the possibility for people with reduced mobility to travel on their own, which is incredibly good because they also have rights and desire to travel and see the world outside the country´s frontiers. The second and actually the reason why this post is out, it give locals the possibility to use the same facilities and live in a more accessible environment day by day. It is not a secret that tourism industry is a big business that implies spending but mostly earning a lot of money. Businesses are in a never ending competition for gaining more sales revenues, more profits and more market share. There is one basic desire among them all: to make money (let´s keep the “client satisfaction” for another time). And why not let them make this money, if it implies benefits for the locals as well.
Accessibility in tourism is a trend, is a need and it is getting more and more important every time. While the private companies and governments are thinking about how to become more accessible and user friendly in terms of tourism, since this is totally a niche market nowadays, their actions of improvements benefit locals in the first place. And this is fantastic. Imagine people who cannot go to the grocery´s shop just because there are no elevators in their block of flats, or ramps, or the pavement on the streets is not adopted for moving along and crossing streets. Then there are grocery shops that doesn´t provide facilities for people to enter into the shop and then move inside etc. There are a lot more examples that we can think of, and this is a very sad reality.
As long as businesses and governments want to improve their revenues and brands by being accessible and covering this niche market, in the first place it will be beneficial for the locals. This is one of the most positive impacts at the level of “society” and “humanity” that tourism has nowadays. It makes you open your eyes and understand that there are people that doesn´t just want to travel in an accessible way, but they also need to live in their own country and have the possibility to do what the locals and the tourists do.
This is why accessibility in tourism is important, and not just for tourists.