Published on Thursday, September 3, 2020

Adventure sector draws up post-Covid standards

Adventure tourism has become the latest sector to draw up a series of safety guidelines as the industry look to build consumer confidence in a post-Covid world.

The Adventure Travel Trade Association worked in conjunction with the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) to compile the measures with the aim of reducing risk and reassuring customers.

Operators who abide by the measures will receive the WTTC Safe Travel stamp.

Among the standards are reducing capacity for activities to allow for physical distancing, keeping households together for all activities, promoting contact tracing apps, encouraging guests to buy tickets online, and the clear communication of health and hygiene protocols.

Abercrombie & Kent, Eurotur, Intrepid and The Travel Corporation (TTC) all took part in discussions with the ATTA and WTTC.

Adventure tourism is expected to one of the first sectors to return to any sense of normality once Covid is under control.

The WTTC said the initiative avoids the emergence of multiple standards which would 'only confuse the consumer and delay the sector's recovery'.

WTTC President and Chief Executive Gloria Guevara said: "Adventure tourism is becoming increasingly popular amongst travellers and will represent a key component to travel in the new normal.

"According to our recently launched Covid-19 Travel Demand Recovery Dashboard, it is also one of the fastest growing segments, which is why it is vital to establish measures allowing safe travels for adventure travellers.

"Consumer confidence is crucial for Travel & Tourism to resume. We know travellers will want to explore the world around them once more, so long as they are confident in their safety. The return of Travel & Tourism will help power the world's much-needed economic recovery, which is why these protocols are so important.

"The expertise from businesses large and small has contributed to define the new experience for travellers, and these robust global measures have been embraced around the world."

ATTA Chief Executive Shannon Stowell added: "As tourism professionals, our priority now is to see adventure travel come back strong, resilient and sustainably.  WTTC and ATTA collaborating on global guidelines for adventure travel is a significant effort to support companies worldwide in re-opening as quickly and safely as possible."

The measures have been backed by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), with protocols taken from guidelines from the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

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