Through the Tourism Grading Council of South Africa (TGCSA), South African Tourism is working in partnership with all key stakeholders to create awareness and encourage tourism businesses, operators and establishments to implement best-practice standards and be universally accessible to all travellers.
Source: ©Andrea De Martin via 123RF
TGCSA has universal accessibility criteria which ensures that accredited establishments are able to provide guests with universally accessible tourism product offerings that comply with global standards. Universal Accessibility
(UA) refers to the design of products and services that are accessible to all people. It ensures that all individuals, regardless of their socio-economic class, ethnicity, or physical disability, have equal access to services and products for their benefit.
"Tourism is open for all to enjoy however, persons living with disabilities still face challenges such as inaccessible hotel and accommodation establishments," says Amanda Kotze-Nhlapo, acting chief quality bureau office of TGCSA.
According to the World Report on Disability
, released by the World Health Organisation (WHO) - globally, it is estimated that there are over one billion (or about 15% of the world’s population) people living with disabilities, in addition there are more than two billion people, such as spouses, children and caregivers of persons with disabilities.
"As a tourism industry we need to pull together for more meaningful investments into the socio-economic building blocks which will reduce the barriers that prevent persons living with disabilities from travelling," concludes Kotze-Nhlapo.