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27 October 2021

The FiturNext Observatory analyses tourism's contribution to a more accessible society in its 2022 edition

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Call for good tourism practices that respond to the FiturNext 2022 challenge is open

The call is open for good tourism practices that address the FiturNext 2022 challenge on how tourism can contribute to a more accessible society through three areas: tourism services and offer, the management and promotion of accessibility, and the use of technologies to promote tourism accessible to all.

FITUR has launched the third edition of the FiturNext 2022 Observatory, an initiative to promote good tourism practices in terms of sustainability. This year the project will focus its agenda on the industry's contribution to accessibility, a commitment aligned with various United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, which seek to reduce inequalities, offer decent working conditions and promote sustainable cities and communities.

The FiturNext Observatory is currently looking for initiatives and projects that contribute to improving the sector from an equity perspective and that have a high capacity for replicability, so that they can be developed by other industry players with different resources and contexts. The winning initiatives will be awarded during the next edition of the International Tourism Trade Fair (FITUR), which will take place from 19 to 23 January 2022.

New technologies and tourism services for everyone

This year's call seeks to detect those initiatives with a holistic vision of accessibility through their tourism offer; the use of new technologies at the service of accessible tourism, and the management and promotion of accessibility in the sector.

The first area focuses on projects that offer products and experiences for everyone in an accessible way, while the second area is aimed at proposals that promote technological advances with accessibility in mind. Finally, organisations and entities that promote a tourism offer for all people through training activities, actions or agreements, can be clear candidates for the FiturNext 2022 challenge. To submit your application, please fill in this online form.

The importance of the 2022 challenge

Last December, the World Tourism Organisation identified accessibility as a paradigm shift for tourist destinations in order to recover from the impacts of the pandemic.

According to the accessible tourism platform Tur4all, in Spain there are almost four million people with some kind of disability, around 9% of the population, and almost 19% is over 65 years old. At European level, Spain's main source market, there are more than 138 million people with accessibility needs. However, the data provided by the TRAN Committee Report, published in 2018 by the Directorate-General for Internal Policies of the European Union, show that just over 9% of European tourism facilities and services have some level of accessibility.

In view of these data, the FiturNext Observatory seeks to contribute to democratising travel, promoting the role of initiatives that are already working towards accessibility in the tourism sector and that allow all people to access, use and enjoy services in a standardised, autonomous and safe way.

Great impact of the 2021 edition

The previous edition of FiturNext, which focused on how tourism can contribute to gender equality, mapped and analysed more than 400 initiatives with a positive impact on promoting female empowerment in the sector. Afrikable, Fundación Codespa and Women in Travel CIC were the award-winning projects of the last edition, within the framework of FITUR, for their proposals in line with the challenge.

FITUR 2021 also hosted the presentation of the FiturNext 2021 Report, an analysis resulting from the research carried out by the Observatory, which will be replicated again in 2022, once the work of this new edition has been completed.

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FITUR is one of the world's leading trade fairs for tourism events and a hub par excellence for the Ibero-American market. Organised by IFEMA MADRID, it will hold its 42nd edition from 19 to 23 January 2022 at the Spanish capital's Trade Fair Centre, with the support of its declaration by the Government as an Event of Exceptional Public Interest. Added to this is the significant support it receives from institutions, countries and destinations, hotel chains, agencies and tour operators, technology companies, suppliers, means of transport, etc., which make FITUR a great platform of reference for discovering new developments, proposals and future trends in terms of specialisation, technology and sustainability, and the essential event for the entire international tourism industry.