Toni Reckley / Tuesday, September 15, 2020 / Categories: Business Blog, 2020 IGLTA Foundation Announces Initiative to Expand LGBTQ+ Tourism Growth in India IGLTA, the International LGBTQ+ Travel Association, was founded in 1983 and is the world's leading network of LGBTQ+ welcoming tourism businesses. We provide free travel resources and information while continuously working to promote equality and safety within LGBTQ+ tourism worldwide. IGLTA has staff in seven countries, and business members in approximately 80 countries. We have relationships with other global organizations such as UNWTO, PATA, as well as many national and local tourism offices. India is a major destination for international tourism. The IGLTA Foundation, supporting IGLTA and its global members in tourism, is expanding its support of India as a destination and LGBTQ+ leader in tourism. During 2020-21 we will build programs to introduce tourism buyers to include India on their list of LGBTQ+ friendly destinations and link up India operators with international supplies. We will grow our membership of LGBTQ+ owned businesses in India as well as non LGBTQ+ businesses who ally to become more LGBTQ+ inclusive and attract pink dollars to India while supporting and learning the unique needs of LGBTQ+ travelers. Our reach and resources there are minimal and therefore we are setting a goal of establishing relationships to grow our business membership to further the visibility and business to India, as well as supporting outbound-India travel advisors with LGBTQ+ supplier options worldwide. India is home to more than 55 million LGBTQ+ adults and their nominal income is around US$113 billion annually, according to estimates. Travel companies will be the first to target the LGBTQ+ community following the scrapping of Section 377, which was introduced 157 years ago. Over 10.04 million foreign tourists arrived in India in 2018 and it had 26 million Indian national departures. India currently ranks as the 22nd destination for tourism international arrivals and growing the LGBTQ+ market share will help increase this. India’s tourism GDP in 2018 was $247 billion. Tourism contributed about 9% of the country’s total GDP. Over 87 million people were employed in tourism prior to COVID and potentially half of those jobs face redundancy threats. Currently, the IGLTA Foundation is building a task force of tourism operators in India and leaders in India interested in promoting and expanding the LGBTQ+ offerings there. We are seeking leaders, and nominations, in the LGBTQ+ community in India (or connected Indians currently living outside of India) who are interested in serving on this task force. To nominate a leader or yourself please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Country-Specific Initiative - India A. IGLTA goals 1. India has the most opportunity with fewer challenges of other large tourism markets (ie-China) 2. Goals: Help with making LGBTQ+ tourism a better experience in India; grow IGLTA membership; promote global exit-India tourism value; create partnerships with community organizations. 3. Leverage current partnerships with PATA and UNWTO for collaboration. B. IGLTA serving India 1. India has a huge domestic travel industry that can better support LGBTQ+ tourism. 2. LGBTQ+ Indian travelers can learn about the rich offerings of current IGLTA members for exit-India travel 3. Develop the sector as a place of employment for LGBTQ+ in India 4. India can be an LGBTQ+ tourism hub Previous Article From the CEO: Reflecting on Global Pride Print 47 Please login or register to post comments.