2009 – the year for positive action


As well as addressing the challenges that a deteriorating world economy will bring to the travel and tourism industry, the key message in the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer is that times of crisis often lead to the biggest opportunities.

The industry is under no illusions that the course of 2009 will enforce wide scale strategic re-thinks and many tough decisions will have to be made.

But what is just as certain is that the industry is a highly-resilient sector and will eventually return to strong growth.

These challenging economic times will only succeed in separating those companies who, with fortitude and vision, remain unbowed in their commitment to excellence from those companies complacent or average.

As the travel industry’s highest accolade, there has never been a more valuable time to demonstrate the pursuit of excellence and to win a World Travel Award.

Since 1993, “the Oscars of the travel industry” have stood unrivalled in impartially recognizing and rewarding those who set the standards across all sectors of travel and tourism.

This year, all eyes will be on the World Travel Awards Program where the winners will show what it truly takes to make a difference and will act as beacons of hope for the industry at large.

“World Travel Awards is proud of its impartial nature and the comprehensive process of its voting program. Votes are cast by an audience of 167,000 travel agents and tourism professionals from 164 participating countries. This level of accountability makes winning an award the greatest form of recognition in the travel business,” said Graham Cooke, president & founder of the World Travel Awards.

History will prove, that 2009’s World Travel Awards Winners will be those companies who best navigate economic fluctuations and will emerge from these challenging times with exponential growth, augmented market share, and galvanized reputations.

Around the World in 7 Ceremonies

The all important winners will be unveiled in a series of landmark Gala Ceremonies.

World Travel Awards have now announced the dates and locations where the leading industry bodies, government representatives, and the world’s media will gather to discover who has been voted the very best of the best.

Middle East – Dubai, UAE – May 4

Africa – Durban, South Africa – May 10

N & C America – Yucatan, Mexico – September 9

Europe – Obidos, Portugal – October 17

South America – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – October 20

Asia – Singapore – October 24

Word Grand Final – Jamaica – October 30

The Time for Action

There has never been a more important year for positive action. Now is the time for companies and individuals alike to step forward and demonstrate what can be done to make a difference.

“Through an unswerving commitment to excellence, through recognizing examples of best practice, and through collective learning and solidarity, these challenging times present us with the opportunity to re-enforce the overall industry infrastructure,” added Cooke.

“2009 is a year of positive action for everyone involved in the travel and tourism industry.”