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1 IITTM Understanding Barriers, Tourism Participation and Disabled Tourists in India Dr Sutheeshna Babu. S Nodal Officer, National Institute of Watersports,

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Presentation on theme: "1 IITTM Understanding Barriers, Tourism Participation and Disabled Tourists in India Dr Sutheeshna Babu. S Nodal Officer, National Institute of Watersports,"— Presentation transcript:

1 1 IITTM Understanding Barriers, Tourism Participation and Disabled Tourists in India Dr Sutheeshna Babu. S Nodal Officer, National Institute of Watersports, Goa TEANSED, Sept. 20, 2012

2 IITTM 2 Scheme of Presentation A brief on the accessible tourism concept Understanding barriers of disabled tourists Barriers of disabled tourists in Indian context- At different stages of tour Some suggestions

3 IITTM 3 Persons with disabilities are persons with any developmental, intellectual, mental, physical or sensory impairments including those mentioned in Schedule 11 of the Act, which are not of a temporary nature, and which in interaction with various barriers may hinder full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others; - The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, 2011 Defining Persons with disabilities

4 IITTM 4 Tourism services should be available to all individuals irrespective of disabilities - Accessible Tourism Concept A process of enabling people with disabilities and seniors to function independently and with equity and dignity through the delivery of universal tourism products, services and environment ( Tourism Australia: Adapted from Olympic Coordination Authority 1999 ) What is accessible tourism and who are covered under it? All persons who, owing to the environment being encountered, suffer a limitation in their relational ability and have special needs during travel, in accommodations, and other tourism services- UNWTO Who are they? Individuals with physical, sensory and intellectual disabilities. Other medical conditions requiring special care, such as elderly persons and others in need of temporary assistance.

5 IITTM 5 Accessible tourism is justified economically and socially Many sections of the society suffers from some form of disability that reduces their access to leisure and holidaying The global size of this segment is huge at 600 million persons (UNFPA-2005). Adding family members makes it nearly 02 billion persons or a third of the worlds population (United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities- (UNCRPD- 2006) Various socio-economic processes such as ageing, war and other forms of violence, accidents etc. cause disabilities of different types (U.N, 2010) The economics of accessible tourism is huge and well acknowledged. Why Accessible tourism?

6 IITTM 6 India (As per Census-2001)Count (mil.) % of total population Disabled people Disabled and their family members and dependents Including people over 60 years of age Market size of disabled Population over 60 years is factored into sizing irrespective of their disability status Overlapping between disabled population and above 60 population is ignored for calculation India statistics on disabled population Size of accessible tourism market segment in India is around 18% of the countrys total population

7 IITTM 7 Accessible Tourism is Legal Obligation Right to leisure is a fundamental right as per UNWTO Manilla Convention 1983 to which India is signatory. Being signatory to The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), India is obliged to enact suitable legislation in furtherance of the rights recognized in the UN Convention. The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, India guarantees the right to leisure, culture and recreation for disabled persons. Why Accessible tourism?

8 IITTM 8 Understanding Barriers- Disabled tourists

9 IITTM 9 Major barriers of this market segment include financial constraint, access, family support and information Lack of access- specific information and lack of special communication such as websites featuring WAI of W3C Movements can be cumbersome owing to possibly vast areas, hilly terrains of tour sites etc. Barriers faced by disabled tourists Lack of family support for disabled restricts their mobility and consequently travel A sizable disabled segment has insufficient disposable income for holidaying

10 IITTM 10 Accessibility is an issue of importance in relation to vacation It is equally or more important compared to the non-disabled persons for various physiological and mental reasons because: Their travel push factor is more than just recreation/ get away from mundane/ just escape/ or rejuvenation. Participation result gaining confidence, self-esteem and avenues to feel oneself. It provides great opportunity for the family members for outing and also fulfill usual travel motivations. How important is leisure/vacation to the disabled Barriers are known and documented but the participation rate of the disabled in leisure and tourism in not known.

11 IITTM 11 Barriers of Disabled Tourists- An Indian perspective

12 IITTM 12 The study finds that access problems faced by tourists are many and varied The findings are based on survey of the disabled as tourists at selected tourist sites. Both domestic and foreign tourists come across problems of accessibility at different stages of tour experience, beginning from planning till end of tour. This is reported by both the foreign and domestic tourists. Access problems ranked as top five are also almost common across these two groups See the details... Major Findings

13 IITTM 13 Use of attendants is less and road travel used by both but air by foreigners and rail by Indians DomesticForeign Not Carrying Caregiver/ Attendant Not required48%51% Self-empowerment10%13% Carrying some mobility equipments Walking stick38%33% Personal care equipments19%23% Transport between destinations Road70%62% Rail22%Insignif. AirInsignif.34% Average expenditure per tourist (within India) Independent travelRs.11965/-Rs /- On packageRs /- Rs /- Total sample Travel Behaviour

14 IITTM 14 Attitude of employees of tourism establishments towards disabled tourists is found to be non-supportive by one third of respondents Attitude of employees of tourism organizations towards disabled tourists Two third of respondents opined the attitudes of employees supportive and one third report attitudinal problems Major reasons cited for unfavourable attitude Need extra-time Poor understanding of the needs of persons with disabilities Absence/ shortage of accessible equipments Social stigma attached to disability.

15 IITTM 15 Both foreign and domestic tourists complain of poor understanding of their problems by employees and an inhospitable attitude RankDomesticForeign 1Poor understanding of their specific problem 2Inhospitable attitude of staff 3Distance and inaccessibility of booking centres 4Unreliable informationInaccessible booking centers/ offices 5Unreliable travel agency serviceUnreliable information Problems faced by Tourists During Booking Stage (rank values top 5)

16 IITTM 16 Both foreign and domestic tourists complain of intra-destination travel, lack of proper information and inadequate signage RankDomesticForeign 1 Intra-destination travel 2Lack of proper information 3Inadequate signage at major points of reference 4Non-availability of personal aids/ equipments at the stations and in the vehicles Travel between places of stay and transport station 5Lack of disability awareness among ground staff Non-availability of personal aids/ equipments at the stations and in the vehicles Problems faced by Tourists During Touring Stage (rank values top 5)

17 IITTM 17 Both foreign and domestic tourists complain of inconvenient access of floors and rooms RankDomesticForeign 1Lack of necessary facilities in the rooms meant for them 2Lack of understanding of staff about their special needs Inappropriate location of rooms 3 Inaccessible lobby 4Comparatively higher rate of adaptable rooms Absence of lifts 5 Non-availability of personal aids/equipments Problems faced by Tourists at Places of stay (rank values top 5)

18 IITTM 18 At tour sites, tourists find accessibility difficult such as public utilities and access points RankDomesticForeign 1Non-availability of special toilets and unhygienic conditions of the available ones Non-availability of ramps in general or level differences in alternate ramps 2Absence of public utilities such as telephone, water tap etc. at convenient places Non-availability of special toilets and unhygienic conditions of the available ones 3Ramps in general are available but not found at required points at attractions.Lack of ramp/lifts 4Non-availability of ramps in general or level differences in alternate ramps Inconvenient reach points at attractions and 5Insufficiently laid pathwaysSlippery or coarse tracks Problems faced by tourists at tour sites (Top 5 ranks)

19 IITTM 19 Factors influencing travel decisions are price, safety and support. Economic factors get top rating by domestic tourists and safety by foreign tourists. RankDomesticForeign 1Economic- reasonably priced tourism products and better income opportunities. Providing safety and support devices 2Trained staff and their friendly treatment of tourists Proper information about availability of aids/ equipments at attractions 3Providing safety and support devicesReasonably priced-tourism products 4Change in attitude of the public towards disabled visitors 5Information about availability of aids/ equipments at attractions Availability of accessible vehicle at destinations. Factors influencing Travel Decisions (Top five ranks)

20 IITTM 20 Suggestions 1.Information provision on special access i.Compilation of information on access support at different tour points and its dissemination through promotion. ii.Providing of WAI (Web access initiative) features in line with W3C and as provided by Govt. of India to make web space access friendly (suggestion given in last presentation). 2.Sensitization for access restrained tourists i.By incorporating it in tourism and hotel management curriculum ii.Through promotional campaigns in general public 3.Building access features at Destinations- universal design standards to be adopted and may develop few model destinations 4. Formulation of a charter of best accessible tourism practices for the stakeholders

21 IITTM 21 Thank You


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