The UNWTO Global Rural Tourism Startup Competition seeks to source new startups and entrepreneurs that advance the contribution of tourism to rural development and support recovery.
The Rural Tourism Startup Competition is creating opportunities in rural destinations through innovation and digital transformation in tourism to:
- Fighting poverty
- Curbing depopulation
- Closing the digital divide
- Supporting women and youth
- Closer: Domestic tourism has shown positive signs in many markets since people tend to travel closer. Travellers go for ‘staycations’ or vacations close to home.
- New concerns: Health & Safety measures and cancellation policies are consumers’ main concerns.
- Getaway: Nature, Rural Tourism and Road Trips have emerged as popular travel choices due to travel limitations and the quest for open-air experiences.
- Last minute: Last-minute bookings have increased due to volatility of pandemic-related events and the travel restrictions.
- Younger travellers most resilient (Change in demographics): travel recovery has been stronger among younger segments. ‘Mature’ travellers and retirees will be the most impacted segments.
- More responsible (Sustainability, authenticity and localhood): travellers have been giving more importance to creating a positive impact on local communities, increasing looking for authenticity.
Benefits of participation
- Mentoring by UNWTO and top partners
- Tailored support for your startup
- Investment opportunities
- Becoming part of the UNWTO Innovation Network
- Becoming part of the UNWTO Best Tourism Villages of the World Pilot Initiative
- Scholarship opportunities for the Tourism Online Academy
- Presentation of your startup at the 14th UNWTO General Assembly in Marrakech Morocco
Categories for participation
- People – Leaving no one behind
- Planet – building back better
- Prosperity – opportunities for growth
- Propulsion of Rural Tech -Implementation of new technologies
How to apply
Interested startups can go ahead to apply here. The deadline for application is Thursday, July 1, 2021.
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