21 Mar 2024

Cape Town Sets New Standards with Limitless Accessible Tourism Initiative


The South African Human Rights Commission highlights the importance of addressing disabilities as a pivotal human rights issue within the nation. According to Statistics South Africa, the country has a disability rate of 7.5%, making the observance of Human Rights Day an ideal time to emphasize the significant role of Destination Marketing Organisations (DMOs) in advancing inclusive and accessible tourism for all visitors, including those with disabilities.

Cape Town Tourism, the city’s designated DMO, advocates for universally accessible travel. This commitment led to the initiation of the Limitless Cape Town campaign in 2023, aiming to provide unrestricted access and equal opportunities for all to enjoy the city’s dynamic attractions.

Understanding Disabilities Beyond Numbers

The concept of disability extends beyond mere statistics, viewing it through the lens of the social model, which sees disability as arising from the interaction between individuals with impairments and an array of barriers in their environment, including physical, attitudinal, communicative, and social obstacles. This perspective suggests that societal and environmental changes are necessary to facilitate full participation of people with disabilities.

The tourism sector presents several challenges for individuals with disabilities, which can limit their travel enjoyment. A Tourism Update survey in 2023 showed that 41% of participants were unsure if accessibility for people with disabilities had improved, with 35% stating no improvements were made. These challenges range from physical barriers at various tourist spots to social barriers rooted in prejudice and discrimination.

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Source: Travel and Tour World