Leading Tourism Recovery

Guiding tourism's recovery

The UNWTO Global Tourism Crisis Committee has united the tourism sector to formulate a sector-wide response to the unprecedented challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Zurab Pololikashvili, UNWTO Secretary-General, Recovery Tourism

"This crisis is an opportunity to rethink the tourism sector and its contribution to the people and planet; an opportunity to build back better towards a more sustainable, inclusive and resilient tourism sector that ensure the benefits of tourism are enjoyed widely and fairly."

Zurab Pololikashvili,
UNWTO Secretary-General

"Tourism is one of the world's most important economic sectors. It employs one in every ten people on Earth and provides livelihoods to hundreds of millions more."

António Guterres,
UN Secretary-General

Leading the way forward

Global coordination is essential for tourism to deliver on its status as a leading generator of opportunity for all. UNWTO leads the way forward, uniting tourism leaders from all over the world. Now more than ever, we need a sector united on behalf of the millions of people who have trusted their future to the power of tourism to drive sustainable growth.

At UNWTO 112 Executive Council held in Georgia, an historic hybrid event where we gathered 170 delegates from 24 countries, we agreed on a landmark mechanism: The Tbilisi Declaration – our commitment to making international travel safe again and realigning the sector towards a more sustainable and inclusive future.

(Y)our chance to RESTART TOURISM

in a more sustainable, inclusive and resilient way

Assess the impact
Restart tourism with data-driven decisions.

Take action
Restart tourism with concrete guidelines and initiatives developed by UNWTO.

Work together to build a tourism sector that works for everyone, where sustainability and innovation are part of everything we do.

Zurab Pololikashvili, UNWTO Secretary-General
Executive Council – 112th session

For people, planet and prosperity

Boost tourism’s recovery with


Investment Networks

Promote investments that boost economic growth, job creation and sustainability in tourism to public and private capital sources.

Developing digital skills


Harnessing innovation and digital advances provides tourism with opportunities to improve inclusiveness, local community empowerment and efficient resource management



As the COVID-19 situation evolves, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) observes that full or partial travel restrictions have been – and continue to be – introduced across the world.

In collaboration with WHO

UNWTO issued a joint statement with WHO, the lead UN agency for the global response to COVID-19 calling for responsibility and heightened coordination to ensure that health measures are implemented ensuring safety and protecting livelihoods.

Stay safe and travel responsibly by following these simple but effective guidelines.

UNWTO is observing the introduction of restrictions on travel. Where these are introduced, they must be based on the latest expert recommendations and have public health concerns as a main concern.

Within this context, UNWTO has stressed the importance of international dialogue and cooperation. This shared challenge also presents the global community, including the tourism sector, to work more closely together and show that solidarity can go beyond national borders.

Small and medium sized enterprises (which make up around 80% of the tourism sector) are expected to be particularly impacted. This might affect millions of livelihoods across the world, including vulnerable communities who rely on tourism as a vehicle to spur their development and economic inclusion.

Due to its cross-cutting economic nature and deep social footprint, tourism is uniquely positioned to help societies and communities affected return to growth and stability. Over the years, the sector has consistently proven its resilience and its ability not only to bounce back as a sector but to lead the wider economic and social recovery. This depends on adequate political support and recognition.

Against this backdrop, UNWTO calls for:

  • financial and political support for recovery measures targeting the tourism sector in the most affected countries;
  • recovery measures and incentives to be planned and implemented in coordination with international development and donor organizations; and
  • tourism support to be included in the wider recovery plans and actions of affected economies.

As in the past, UNWTO will provide guidance and support for recovery measures of its members, the private and public tourism sector, including organizers of tourism events and fairs.

Through its website and social media channels (Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook).

The following links provide an overview of guidelines and other similar documents related to the COVID-19:

The Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a new virus that causes respiratory illness in humans and can spread from person-to-person. COVID-19 is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans.

World Health Organization Guidelines and recommendations

Other relevant recommendations

Relevant links