At its 12th Session in Istanbul, Turkey, in October 1997, the UNWTO General Assembly decided to designate a host country each year to act as the Organization’s partner in the celebration of World Tourism Day. At its Fifteenth Session in Beijing, China, in October 2003, the Assembly decided the following geographic order to be followed for World Tourism Day celebrations: 2006 in Europe; 2007 in South Asia; 2008 in the Americas; 2009 in Africa and 2011 in the Middle East.
The late Ignatius Amaduwa Atigbi, a Nigerian national, was the one who proposed the idea of marking September 27 of every year as World Tourism Day. He was finally recognized for his contribution in 2009. The colour of World Tourism Day is Blue.
World Tourism Day 2020 would be celebrated on Sunday, 27th of September, 2020.
This day is celebrated every year having particular theme for making aware the people all over the world. The theme of 2011 event celebration was “Tourism Linking Cultures” and of 2012 was “Tourism and Energetic Sustainability“. “Tourism and Water: Protecting our Common Future” was the theme of year 2013 will be highlighting the tourism role to a brighter energy future. The day is celebrated every year on September 27th each year aiming to aware the people about the importance of the tourism.
A message is sent to the general public every year by the UNWTO Secretary-General to participate in the occasion. It is celebrated with the great interest by the various tourism enterprises, organizations, government agencies and etc. Varieties of competitions are held at this day such as photo competitions promoting the tourism, tourism award presentations including free entries, discounts / special offers to the general public.
Tourism has become the continuously growing and developing economic sectors worldwide because of the occurrence of various attractive and new destinations for the tourists. So it has become the main source of income for the developing countries.
World Tourism Day Themes
- 1980: Tourism’s contribution to the preservation of cultural heritage and to peace and mutual understanding
- 1981: Tourism and the quality of life
- 1982: Pride in travel: good guests and good hosts
- 1983: Travel and holidays are a right but also a responsibility for all
- 1984: Tourism for international understanding, peace and cooperation
- 1985: Youth Tourism: cultural and historical heritage for peace and friendship
- 1986: Tourism: a vital force for world peace
- 1987: Tourism for development
- 1988: Tourism: education for all
- 1989: The free movement of tourists creates one world
- 1990: Tourism: an unrecognized industry, a service to be released
- 1991: Communication, information and education: powerlines of tourism development
- 1992: Tourism: a factor of growing social and economic solidarity and of encounter between people
- 1993: Tourism development and environmental protection: towards a lasting harmony
- 1994: Quality staff, quality tourism
- 1995: WTO: serving world tourism for twenty years
- 1996: Tourism: a factor of tolerance and peace
- 1997: Tourism: a leading activity of the twenty-first century for job creation and environmental protection
- 1998: Public-private sector partnership: the key to tourism development and promotion
- 1999: Tourism: preserving world heritage for the new millennium
- 2000: Technology and nature: two challenges for tourism at the dawn of the twenty-first century
- 2001: Tourism: a toll for peace and dialogue among civilizations
- 2002: Ecotourism, the key to sustainable development
- 2003: Tourism: a driving force for poverty alleviation, job creation and social harmony
- 2004: Sport and tourism: two living forces for mutual understanding, culture and the development of societies
- 2005: Travel and transport: from imaginary of Jules Verne to the reality of the 21st century
- 2006: Tourism Enriches
- 2007: Tourism opens doors for women
- 2008: Tourism Responding to the Challenge of Climate Change and global warming
- 2009: Tourism – Celebrating Diversity
- 2010: Tourism & Biodiversity
- 2011: Tourism Linking Cultures
- 2012: Tourism and Energetic Sustainability
- 2013: Tourism and Water: Protecting our Common Future
- 2014: Tourism and Community Development
- 2015: Millions of tourists, millions of opportunities
- 2016: Tourism for All – promoting universal accessibility
- 2017: Sustainable Tourism – a tool for development
- 2018: Tourism And Cultural Protection
- 2019: Tourism and Jobs: a better future for all
- 2020: Tourism and Rural Development