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Welcome Aboard To International Travel
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“I am not the same, having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.” – Mary Anne Radmacher
Over the years, tourism industry has experienced tremendous continuous growth. It is one of the world’s fastest growing economic sectors and has socio-economic influence on a nation. According to the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the United Nations agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism, “Today the business volume of tourism equals or even surpasses that of oil exports, food products or automobiles.” For many developing countries, it is a major source of revenue.
Travel is not only related to an individual but encompasses so many others in its circle. Imagine the various parties involved in sectors like lodging & accommodation, transportation, entertainment, etc.! Tourism is directly related to development. UNWTO’s annual report for 2015 indicates that tourism contributes to job creation, poverty alleviation, environmental protection and multicultural peace and understanding across the globe.
Past few decades, this rise in tourism can be attributed to several factors and this is not going to halt or slow down. It’s a good thing to have, after all travel broadens one’s horizons and makes them respectful to others, nature, different customs and beliefs, promoting and fostering peace. Let’s take a look at why travel, especially international travel is on a high rise:
• Technology: Technological advancements have played a major role in how travel industry has shaped up and influenced how travelers travel. Today-
o With one search, people can find cheapest flights. They can compare hundreds of airlines and travel sites.
o Even first time travelers are not completely ignorant. Hotel websites, official tourism websites, online guides, travel forums, picture galleries, all give them enough information to get well acquainted with the place they are going to visit. Technology enables the trips to be better planned.
o Internet and Social Media has facilitated travel planning in a much informed way. Before visiting any place, people talk in their social and online networks. They discuss, search and choose together. Travelers write reviews on social sites which are a major source of information for many.
o Web has brought ease of booking online. If you do not have time to call, just use your smartphone on the go and make bookings. It’s instant. You are all set to travel. Similarly, cancellations can be done online too.
• Airfare: There are so many low cost flights nowadays that once deserted looking place called airport now resembles a busy bus stop. More and more people are demanding air travel. The competition to be profitable in air travel industry has resulted many times in getting excellent airfare deals to countless destinations all over the world.
• Changing demographics: Today young travelers are traveling for educational purposes, cultural exchange, learning new traditions, making international friends and life-enriching experiences. According to a report by the World Youth Student and Educational Travel Confederation, “in 2013 young travellers generated US$200 billion towards global tourism receipts, affirming their financial value to the global tourism industry and local economies.” Youngsters have changed the international travel demographics quite a bit.
• Self-Protection options: With increased number of travelers everywhere, the security and safety concerns are a major factor to be considered. Travel or visitor insurance now provides better coverage than ever before, and one of the true facts is that, now people recognize this as a necessity while traveling. It is a clear indication that with visitor insurance they are confident to travel to unknown and faraway terrains. Visitor insurance safeguards a traveler away from his home country from unforeseen medical emergencies, illnesses or injuries. Surprisingly, it also offers protection when the destination country sees political unrest, terrorist activities etc. It provides critical benefits like repatriation of mortal remains and emergency medical evacuation. No doubt, visitor insurance is as important as buying tickets for international travel. Purchasing it from an authorized agent like MultiChoice Insurance Services (MCIS) with experienced and licensed agents, is like a cherry on the top. They not only offer excellent customer support but also help with decision making as to which visitor insurance plan is the best for a person, depending on his health, pre-existing conditions, duration and nature of his trip.
With so many facilities and benefits of traveling, what are you thinking? Even the theme for this year’s World Tourism Day was Accessible Tourism. Regardless, if you have some physical constraints or you are a family with small children, or you are old, you can still enjoy tourism, said UNWTO. So, stop thinking and welcome aboard to international travel!
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