A new research paper has revealed a significant gap in the travel industry’s ability to provide a truly inclusive experience.
After months of research, the Sparrowly Group found consumers affected with disability in its many forms are largely being left out by the services provided by the travel industry.
The research also identified the opportunity the segment represents, with visitation by people with disability attributing to $10.8 billion to the Australian economy, more than the Chinese inbound market currently at $10.4 billion.
These findings led to the development of the discussion paper Creating Real Inclusion: A call to arms to the tourism industry.
Sparrowly Group Founder and Managing Director, Giovanna Lever said it’s import for the tourism industry to lead the way in the provision of services for people with disability.
“It was evident from the research and the people that we interviewed as part of the project that whilst the tourism industry has taken a step in the direction of inclusion, it’s just not enough,” Lever said.
“Tourism has an opportunity right now to lead a change in the way many industries address this important segment and offer true accessibility rather than a cursory solution, not just for the benefit of those with disability but for maximising the opportunity presented by the segment and ultimately the sustainability of the industry itself.”
The independent research paper incorporates the outcomes of discussions with people with disability across many forms as well as tourism and event operators and their approach to accessibility including analysis of major events such as the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth & Paralympic Games.
The paper also outlines multiple recommendations including and potentially of most importance, comprehensive and appropriate training of staff in the delivery of inclusive service.
For those with disability, it is not just the physical experience that denotes an inclusive one but the attitudes and understanding of staff in service delivery.
You can check out the full paper here.