UNWTO: International agreements for the Protection of Tourists
In the framework of the pandemic generated by COVID 19, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) focused on generating new plans and aagreements to provide tourists legal protection as consumers to regain confidence when buying / booking their travels.
Creating and generate a feeling of trust in tourist is one of the main objectives set by the tourism sector and that is why the International agreement for the Protection of Tourists has now been created, presented by the UNWTO with the support, for now, of almost 100 Member States will contribute to provide assistance, at the global level, to affected tourists during emergency situations.
Recently the UNWTO has published the Recommendations for assisting international tourists in emergency situations, which would lay the foundations for this international agreement.
Establishing a harmonized set of minimum standards for consumer protection that covers tourists will help people feel safer and more confident along their international travels. These recommendations are intended to ensure the responsibility of taking care of tourists in emergency situations is shared fairly throughout the entire tourism value chain, which involves:
- Prevent eventual problems through the development of contingency plans, the implementation of coordination protocols and the training of stakeholders in tourism, in order to provide assistance to tourists in emergency situations.
- Provide real-time information to tourists.
- Pave cross-border cooperation between governments and tourism service providers.
- Foster close collaboration between governments and travel and accommodation providers.
- Consider effective repatriation of tourists.
The International Code for the protection of tourists will represent a decisive advance in overcoming the uncertainty and lack of confidence that travelers have currently and is what also prevents the reactivation of tourism. It will also ensure that the entire industry fairly shares the responsibility for managing the terrible consequences caused by the pandemic.