Paving the Way to Accessible Tourism - Survey Report
This report, by Carlos Buj of the International Centre for Responsible Tourism, Leeds Metropolitan University, aims to generate useful knowledge about the travel needs of people with limited mobility (PwLM) as well as to identify ongoing trends in the unexplored field of accessible tourism as an economic sector. The research carried out for this report is based on literature review, a questionnaire, case studies and interviews with experts. The findings are discussed and used to shape the final recommendations and conclusion.
The specific needs of people with communication disabilities, those with cognitive/intellectual or psychiatric disabilities and those with sensorial disabilities have not been specifically considered for the primary research, as they imply considerations too complex to be comprised in this report. In other words, only those with a physical mobility concern have been addressed in the questionnaire.
The arguments for accelerating the transition towards accessibility are strong. There is clear evidence that it possesses the potential to significantly benefit locals, tourists and tourism businesses.
However, there are three main obstacles. Firstly, lack of common standards and regulations regarding accessibility. The second one, very related is the poor and unreliable information on accessibility places a serious limitation on the potential travel experiences of persons with limited mobility (PwLM). Thirdly, a holistic approach is lacking: separate and uncoordinated efforts alone will not make accessible tourism flourish.
A holistic approach that covers transport, accommodation and attractions is indispensable to producing accessible destinations.
To overcome these obstacles, tourism businesses need to be part of the solution. To do so, they need to understand what accessibility means and to what extent it can benefit them. The public sector should stimulate this process whilst simultaneously coordinating efforts to shape a tourism industry which is truly accessible for all.
None of the aforementioned processes have any chance of being successful if they do invite associations for PwLM to actively participate. Consultation with PwLM is essential, not only because they are the key stakeholders in accessible tourism, but because their needs and problems are nowhere near as obvious at they may seem to those who do not have any mobility limitation.
Table of Contents
1. INTRODUCTION TO THE REPORT 5
2. AIMS AND OBJECTIVES 5
3. GLOSSARY AND TERMINOLOGY 6
4. BACKGROUND 8
4.1 DISABILITIES 8
4.2. DISABILITIES AND TOURISM 9
4.3 BENEFICIARIES OF ACCESSIBILITY 10
5. RATIONALE 13
6. LITERATURE REVIEW 17
6.1 CONCEPT OF UNIVERSAL DESIGN 17
6.2 ACCESSIBLE TOURISM RESEARCH 18
6.3 SOCIAL AND INCLUSIVE TOURISM 20
6.4 BUILDING THE BUSINESS CASE 20
6.5 LEGISLATION 21
6.6 CONCLUSION 24
7. RESEARCH METHODS 24
7.1 METHODOLOGY 24
7.2 METHODS 25
8 ANALYSIS OF RESULTS 35
8.1 QUESTIONNAIRE 35
8.2 CASE STUDIES 44
9 DISCUSSION 49
9.1 PwLM TRAVEL 49
9.2 OPPORTUNITIES FOR DESTINATION 51
9.3 ENGAGING BUSINESSES 53
10. RECOMMENDATIONS 56
11. CONCLUSION 58
BIBLIOGRAPHY AND REFERENCES 59
ANNEX 1 66
ANNEX 2 69
Download the report from Carlos Buj's website