The United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) has launched a new global initiative to encourage nations, tourism sector leaders and consumers to be more open-minded when choosing travel destinations.
Announced during the 2023 World Tourism Day (WTD) celebrations in Riyadh, Tourism Opens Minds will showcase the powerful role that tourism plays in bridging cultures and promoting a more interconnected and harmonious world.
To mark the launch, delegates gathered in Riyadh were presented with a pledge that calls on them to actively work to promote new and under-appreciated destinations.
WTD was held as new data from UNWTO underscored the sector's recovery from the impacts of the pandemic.
Research suggests, however, that only a minority of tourists intend to seek out new or different destinations as they start travelling again.
According the UNWTO World Tourism Barometer, global tourism is on track to recover 80 per cent and 95 per cent international arrival numbers by the end of 2023.
But a recent YouGov survey found that 66 per cent of tourists think that travelling to a familiar place is important.
Just under half of respondents feel uncomfortable travelling to places they know little about, despite the fact that 83 per cent those who do travel to new destinations agree that they come back with a changed or broadened perspective.