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International standard on accessible tourism, soon to be completed

First ISO standard on accessible tourism


The 105 countries included in the ISO/TC 228 International Committee, responsible for the development of the standard, must vote and comments on the draft will be accepted until 3 October. This standard is expected to be published in the first half of 2020. This has been announced by the ONCE Foundation, the WTO and UNE to coincide with World Tourism Day.

The three organizations have published a document with the ISO codes 21902 to raise awareness of the future standard.

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 leads this International Standardization 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.

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.

Support for the tourism sector

Standards are strategic allies of tourism. In the recently published Report on Support for standardization in the tourism sector, UNE shows how standards contribute to improving competitiveness in the tourism industry. The Spanish Standardization Organization collaborates with leading Spanish tourism organizations, such as the ICTE, in the development of Spanish and global standards. Spain has become a world benchmark in the development of tourism standards in many areas. For example, in standards on Smart Tourist Destinations, drawn up under the impulse of SEGITTUR.

The company is also a member of UNETUR, promoted by SETUR, together with SEGITTUR, ICTE, ITH and UNE. This initiative will be the national reference in matters of tourism standards and signs, through the development of a comprehensive quality and competitiveness model.