Media Release - New report urges action to capture surging Inclusive Tourism Market

18 February 2018

More than 95,000 tourism operators and businesses in NSW are missing out on a potential windfall by not providing better information and services for people with a disability, older people and young families, according to a new report into the inclusive tourism market.

Inclusive Tourism: Economic Opportunities was commissioned by Local Government NSW (LGNSW) and co-funded by NSW Department of Industry, NSW Family and Community Services, LGNSW and the University of Technology Sydney.

It looked at the latest domestic tourism data, analysed international tourism trends and case studies as well as the level of potential growth in the Australian inclusive tourism market. It comes as a new inclusive tourism on-line training course is released, providing the clear steps businesses can take to capitalise on the growing market.

“People with a disability have a right to enjoy travel and holidays like us all, and for the first time there is a clear business case for inclusive tourism,” LGNSW President Linda Scott said today. 

“It tells us that the inclusive tourism market is growing rapidly and that there is potential for even greater growth if businesses make a few simple improvements.

“And as the industry gathers deeper insights, we’ll get a better picture of the potential of the market. It’s likely the opportunities are even greater than what we’re seeing today.” 

The report found:

  • $8.9 billion was spent on overnight or day trips in Australia by people with a disability, older people or young families from January to March 2017
  • Inclusive Tourism expenditure is expected to reach 25% of total tourism market by 2020
  • There is a multiplier effect of 0.5 that can be applied to expenditure of people with a disability because they often travel with companions
  • The size of the inclusive tourism market is likely to double over the next 40 years
  • The Chinese, UK, European and US markets of people travelling with a disability could be worth up to $10 billion a year.

Clr Scott said business, tourism and local government representatives had been working closely to develop more resources to help businesses understand how they can provide better services to the inclusive tourism market.

This included:

  • A series of 2017 roadshows on how to cater to the inclusive tourism market
  • An expanded set of mandatory questions for tourism operators to answer as part of their listing with the Australian Tourism Data Warehouse; and
  • An online training course targeted at councils and businesses. 

“The on-line course is the first of its kind in Australia,” she said. “It’s a practical, easy-to-use guide on what tourism operators or councils can do to help provide better services to the inclusive tourism market.

“It focuses on how to provide better information, access and great customer service. And this doesn’t always mean extra cost.” 


Media Enquiries

LGNSW President, Cr Linda Scott
Media Toni Allan: 0412 774 441