Several decades has passed since the tourism as we know it today existed. With improved transportation options and technology the sector has come a long way. Low cost of flying as a result of Airline Company’s competition virtually lowered the whole transport sector. Technology also reduced travel costs and time creating easier facilitation travel and hotel booking options.
Global interlocking not only kept the world connected without borders, but also made more predisposed mobility. Flows of capital, ideas, and information enabled people to travel frequently than ever before. Developments to information technology and telecommunications allowed process of quick information in digital form transforming the traditional way of traveling. Traveling has grown to be a necessity not a luxury even to developing Africa. On the other hand the gradual increase in the purchasing power of the generation brought dramatic change to the sector. The popularity of social networks picture sharing encouraged more people to travel and share their experiences motivating others to travel. The proliferation of online reviews also enticed people to make travel one of their priority.
Tourism trends just as technology and mobility, is a major driver of new socio-economic growth. Improved booking tools such as Jovago.com are allowing people to hone in on more efficient itineraries. Such improved tools are helping travellers to easily find their best accommodation options saving time and cost. Assisted by such platforms, last year one billion international tourists travelled the world. Close to five billion people travelled domestically within their own countries. The United Nations World Trade Organization (UNWTO) forecast this number to continue to rise expecting a staggering 1.8 billion international tourists by 2030. These tourists will generate over one trillion dollars for the countries they visit.
Globally one in every 12 jobs are connected to the tourism sector. Tourism represents jobs, business opportunities, the renewal of urban and rural areas and preservation and promotion of a country’s natural and cultural heritages playing as a key factor to spur economic growth. Currently, nearly half of the one billion international tourist arrivals in the world are to emerging and developing economies. UNWTO expects developing countries to grow at double the pace of developed ones over the coming 20 years. At this rate, emerging economies will overtake advanced ones in terms of international tourist arrivals and will be receiving over one billion visitors by 2030.
Tourism has created a fundamental pillar of the current and future socioeconomic progress of developed, emerging and developing economies. As tourism numbers continue to rise, alongside jobs, trade and development, tourism is gaining increasing recognition at national and international levels. World leaders meeting at two major summits last year, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) and the G20, agreed that tourism can make an important contribution to many of the world’s most pressing challenges. Tourism is slowly receiving the recognition it deserves by those shaping the path to sustained economic growth.
Given its globalized nature, impressive growth projections and increasing prominence at decision-making tables, tourism has a major role to play in not just current, but future economic models as well. In spite of its immense expansion, obstacles naturally remain to tourism’s continued growth. Complex visa processes still restrict the free travel of people worldwide while tax burdens and policies hamper investments. Nevertheless, these obstacles in no way diminish tourism’s power to bring economic advancement if it’s considered as strategic pillar of development.