Accessible tourism involves a collaborative process among all stakeholders, Governments, international agencies, tour-operators and end-users, including persons with disabilities and their organizations (DPOs). A successful tourism product requires effective partnerships and cooperation across many sectors at the national, regional and international levels. From idea to implementation, a single destination visit normally involves many factors, including accessing information, long-distance travel of various sorts, local transportation, accommodation, shopping, and dining. The impact of accessible tourism thus goes beyond the tourist beneficiaries to the wider society, engraining accessibility into the social and economic values of society.
Accessibility is a central element of any responsible and sustainable development policy. It is both a human rights imperative, as well as an exceptional business opportunity. In this context, accessible tourism does not only benefit persons with disabilities, it benefits all of society.
To ensure that accessible tourism is developed in a sustainable manner requires that tourist destinations go beyond ad hoc services to adopting the principle of universal design, ensuring that all persons, regardless of their physical or cognitive needs, are able to use and enjoy the available amenities in an equitable and sustainable manner. This approach foregoes preferential or segregated treatment of differently abled constituents to permitting uninhibited use of facilities and services by all, at any time, to equitable effect.