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PN Future International Standard on Accessible Tourism

The international ISO standard for accessible tourism is in its final stages of development

26/09/2019

  • Experts from more than 100 countries will participate in its development, under the leadership of the International Labour Organization (ILO), the ONCE Foundation and UNE. The future ISO standard, open for comment until 3 October, is due to be published in the first half of 2020, and will be the world's leading standard for accessible tourism. 

26 September 2019. The future ISO 21902 international standard on accessible tourism, led by the ONCE Foundation, the World Tourism Organization (WTO) and the Spanish Association for Standardisation, UNE, will end its public comment period on 3 October. The 105 countries included in the ISO/TC 228 Committee have until this date to cast their votes and submit comments on the draft. This standard is expected to be published in the first half of 2020. This has been announced by the three organizations to mark World Tourism Day, celebrated tomorrow.

To raise awareness of the standard future, which will be the world's first in accessible tourism, the Fundación ONCE, the WTO and UNE have published a document with key information on the ISO 21902.

The future Standard ISO/DIS 21902 Tourism and related services. Accessible Tourism for All. Requirements and recommendations is being developed in the Technical Standardization Committee ISO/TC 228 on Tourism and related services, within the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). Spain is directing this international committee, in which UNE acts as secretariat, coordinating the work of 10 working groups.

The ISO addresses all the requirements to be met by tourist service providers in order to ensure that their offer is accessible to everyone. It contains a general chapter (covering topics such as information, training, design and the built environment), as well as specific chapters for each type of provider (accommodation, transport, catering, etc.). The document stresses the importance of guaranteeing that all links in the tourist chain are accessible. The standard has been created to generate networks of accessible tourism establishments and operators, which will all follow the same criteria, and will launch a movement towards accessible tourism for all.

Among the expected benefits for tourism companies, the standard is a tool that provides technical knowledge in terms of tourism accessibility and leads to a wider market. Information will also be offered more effectively, accessibly and homogeneously for disabled people, which will result in a more satisfactory tourist experience.