The UNWTO has commended the measures taken by the Government of Romania to attract more international youth travellers through the country’s first tourism cluster dedicated to young people.
The new Youth Tourism Cluster, an initiative by the Ministry of Tourism of Romania, brings together state institutions, private companies and international organisations with the common goal of promoting youth tourism in Romania. Its aim is to position the country as a destination for young people.
Speaking at the Conference, “Youngsters meet clusters, tourism and innovation” in Bucharest, UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai, highlighted the potential of young people as an emerging travel segment:
“Young people are travelling more than ever and there is great potential for governments to unlock the socio-economic possibilities emerging from youth travel. Romania is now strategically positioned to actively develop youth travel policies, products and marketing campaigns to encourage more young people to travel or to engage in tourism businesses, which is essential in order to foster youth travel as a means for development.”
“Romania is a fun and ’user friendly’ travel destination, with astonishing panoramic mountain views, parties by the seaside and cosmopolitan cities, always opened to people in search for a fun time. The aim of this cluster is to develop projects targeting young people all over the world and to grow this niche for tourism in Romania. I see in this cluster an example of partnership whose main scope would be that of attracting young travelers. I hope that our initiative will encourage the creation of similar clusters in Europe and, why not, a best practices model in the world” said Florin Nicolae Jianu, Romanian Minister for SMEs, Business Environment and Tourism.
UNWTO estimates that 20% of all international tourists are between 15 to 29 years old. By the year 2020, there will be about 300 million international youth trips every year. The UNWTO Recommendations on Youth Travel, endorsed by the Organization’s 20th General Assembly, recognises the positive impact young travellers have on host communities, destinations and countries. It further identifies joint initiatives and partnerships among public and private tourism stakeholders as one of the key issues in fostering knowledge development, policy measures and investments in youth travel.
In little over a decade, the number of international tourists visiting Romania nearly doubled to reach 1.7 million in 2013, while exports generated by the tourism sector grew threefold from less than EUR 400 million in 2000 to EUR 1.1 billion euros last year.