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Fri, 22 April 2022

Destination 2030: Global Cities' Readiness for Sustainable Tourism Growth

(22 April 2022, 11:53 +07)  JLL and the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) have published a new report which looks at what makes a city better prepared for travel and tourism growth.

The report - Destination 2030: Global cities readiness for sustainable tourism growth - was released during WTTCs 21st Global Summit in Manila, Philippines.

Prior to the pandemic, the travel and tourism sector had been outpacing the global economy for almost a decade, with an annual average growth of 4.3% compared to 2.9% through 2019, and a contribution of nearly USD 9.2 trillion to the global economy in the same year.

Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong. Picture by Steven Howard of TravelNewsAsia.com Click to enlarge.
Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong. Picture by Steven Howard of TravelNewsAsia.com

After the damaging disruption caused by the ongoing global COVID19 pandemic, the global travel and tourism industry is finally seeing signs of recovery. As the sector continues to evolve, the halt to international travel not only provided new challenges, but also the opportunity for policy makers, destination leaders and stakeholders to enhance the sectors readiness.

The Destination 2030 report addresses what makes a city ready for sustainable travel and tourism.

63 global cities were measured and categorised into one of five levels of readiness while providing attainable solutions to promote sustainable growth in tourism activity in each destination.

Travel and tourism plays an incredibly important role in a citys economy, not only boosting GDP, but also creating jobs and improving the livelihoods of those who rely on our sector, said Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO. We are delighted to continue our partnership with JLL building on our initial report launched in 2019 with a special focus on sustainability. For a city to truly thrive and for travel and tourism to develop in a sustainable manner, stakeholders need to understand how prepared the city is for the expected growth in tourism and the resulting challenges and opportunities that lay ahead.

According to the report, the readiness levels range on a scale from emerging to established-market tourism hubs with varying levels of infrastructure. It goes on explain the current opportunities and challenges faced by cities and offers recommendations for building and maintaining tourism activity.

The notion of readiness has a ripple effect throughout the hospitality and tourism industry, said Gilda Perez-Alvarado, Global CEO, JLL Hotels & Hospitality. The progression and planning that a country, region or destination achieves will impact the financial health of the industries that make up the tourism industry. This includes property values, tax generation and workforce development.

Although the five typologies will require different approaches to development, no one typology is better than another, and all will demand proactiveness in strategic planning and implementation at the destination level:

- Dawning Developers: such as New Delhi and Riyadh, are cities with emerging tourism infrastructure, slower tourism growth and lower visitor concentration. Such destinations often have a clean slate in planning long term tourism development with many opportunities ahead.

- Emerging Performers: such as Dubrovnik and Buenos Aires, are cities that are experiencing growing tourism momentum, enabled by emerging tourism infrastructure, and providing tremendous opportunities for strategic development. However, destinations in this category may experience pressures and challenges such as overcrowding.

- Balanced Dynamics: such as Auckland and Vancouver, are cities that have established tourism infrastructure and potential for further travel and tourism growth, across both leisure and business segments, whilst balancing scale and concentration.

- Mature Performers: such as Miami, Berlin and Hong Kong, are cities with a strong leisure and/or business travel dynamics and an established tourism infrastructure. As these destinations look to further drive travel and tourism growth, they will need to proactively consider potential pressures as well as opportunities for diversification to avoid strains linked to visitor volumes.

- Managing Momentum: such as Amsterdam, London and Las Vegas, are cities with a historical high growth momentum, supported by an established tourism infrastructure. Destinations within this typology are more likely than Mature Performers to have already reached the stage of feeling the pressures of balancing scale and concentration as they continue to benefit from travel and tourism.

The readiness categories were determined by analysing data on 79 indicators within eight pillars. In addition to the six pillars included in the previous report - scale, concentration, leisure, business, urban readiness, and policy prioritisation two new pillars were added: environmental readiness, and safety and security.

The collective research that has produced the readiness index underscores the importance and breadth of engagement that is needed from the tourism industry, said Dan Fenton, Director of Global Tourism and Destination Development Services, JLL Hotels & Hospitality. Our industry must take a leadership role in virtually all indicators that make up the index.

The full 54-page report can be downloaded (20.5MB) in .pdf format here.

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