Updated September 2023 – World Tourism Day (sometimes referred to as International Tourism Day) remains an annual celebration of the tourism industry. In 2023, this celebration holds even more significance as the tourism sector adapts and evolves to a new era of modern travel, making this year’s World Tourism Day particularly noteworthy.

What is World Tourism Day?

World Tourism Day was established in 1980 by the World Tourism Organization (WTO), a United Nations agency. Its primary purpose is to advocate for accessible and sustainable tourism. The WTO’s vision emphasizes making tourism accessible to all, irrespective of their abilities or income levels. World Tourism Day seeks to raise awareness about the importance of inclusive and accessible tourism, enabling everyone to explore diverse destinations worldwide.

In addition, the WTO recognizes the significance of sustainable tourism in shaping the future. The aim is to prevent over-tourism that can erode local cultures and identities. Sustainable tourism places a strong emphasis on minimizing the environmental impact of travel while supporting the economic growth of host communities. The goal is to preserve local landscapes and cultures while leveraging tourism as a means to strengthen local economies.

When is World Tourism Day?

World Tourism Day is observed annually on September 27th. This day offers tour and activity operators a unique opportunity to promote their businesses while advocating for accessible and responsible travel.

How can tour operators celebrate World Tourism Day?

World Tourism Day is a unique opportunity for tour operators to celebrate their profession while at the same time showing gratitude to their customers. As an example, these are a few ways that you can commemorate International Tourism Day this year:

Offering specials and discounts

Offering specials and discounts on 27 September, is a fun way to celebrate tourism festivities. The average traveler at your destination on this day may not realize that it’s World Tourism Day. By offering unique promotions and discounts, you will be raising awareness about the event while also enjoying a boost in your bookings. Appreciating tour guides’ work as successful employees of your business is also essential. Giving them thank-you gifts for this occasion will boost their productivity and dedication to the quality of their tours.

Showcasing your operations

Create a video to share on social media that goes behind the scenes of your tour and activity’s operations. Show what a day in the life of a tour operator is like, and explain the work that goes into promoting sustainable and accessible tourism in your destination. Teach your customers a bit more about what you do and why you do it as a way of celebrating.

Appreciating your employees

Treat your tour guides and other members of the team to a staff appreciation lunch or give them a small bonus time off, if possible. By recognizing the hard work that your employees do throughout the year, you will improve your employee retention rates and continue to bolster your local economy.

How the event can benefit your tour business

International Tourism Day can benefit your tour and activity business in a variety of ways, including:

  • Increasing your number of bookings: You may see a boost in bookings on or around World Tourism Day, as people around the world look to celebrate the event.
  • Boosting your brand recognition as a result of your alliance with a global cause. People in the local area, as well as those from abroad, will begin to see your tourism business as a dedicated player in the industry that aligns with responsible tourism guidelines.
  • Allowing you to reach new market segments, including local people who may not otherwise have participated in your tours and activities.


"Travel opens your mind to new experiences, connects you with family & friends and makes you value the comforts of home. We've all felt the loss of travel over the past year or more. Today is a chance to revel in planning a new trip, or for those lucky enough, actually, commence a new adventure. Whenever you travel next, I hope you're able to do it with more conscious appreciation, are able to treasure it & ensure you do it in a sustainable way so that many others after you can enjoy it too."
Chris Atkin
CEO of Rezdy
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Rezdy exists to power the Experiences industry, what some call ‘the best part of travel’. We provide the technology to operators delivering magical & memorable experiences, helping them run their businesses & take bookings online. We hope this day is another step in the continued recovery of the industry towards the full resumption of travel we all crave & took for granted.”

As you prepare to celebrate World Tourism Day in 2023, you will want to ensure that your business is geared to accept as many bookings as possible. Rezdy can help you save time, manage your bookings and generate more revenue for your business. At Rezdy, we are here to support you as you build back after the pandemic. Start a FREE 21-day trial or book a free demo today.

For more support and tips on how to increase sales in your travel business, follow Rezdy’s blog.

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