On the eve of its second anniversary, the Wellness Tourism Association (WTA) has announced that it now comprises 100+ Members & Partners from 21 countries.
These are: Australia, Austria, Brussels, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Dubai, France, Germany, Maldives, Mexico, Monaco, South Korea, St. Lucia, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, UK, US and Vietnam.
A network of qualifying members of the wellness tourism industry, plus partners who want to support the industry and bring value to the organisation, the WTA is incorporated as a not-for-profit privately-held company in the State of Colorado, and officially launched on January 15, 2018.
“Our mission is to support and further the growth and development of the wellness tourism industry for the global good. We are thrilled to have reached 100 Members and Partners, who are all helping us fulfill our mission to support the sustainable growth of wellness tourism worldwide,” says Anne Dimon, WTA president and CEO.
In its first two years of operation, and in keeping with its goals of bringing clarity, definitions and standards to the industry, the WTA has introduced a glossary of industry terms, brought standards to the industry by establishing criteria for membership, conducted a consumer survey on Wellness Vacations then shared the results with members and the industry at large, and polled its members on the top trends they see set to expand in 2020 and beyond.
The organisation also introduced the first nine-point list of suggested criteria for any DMO or tourism board looking to market any region of the world as a ‘wellness destination’. Other initiatives, in keeping with the overall mission of the organisation, are in the works and will be announced soon.
“It is rewarding to see members from across the globe join and support the goals of wellness tourism,” says chairman Andrew Gibson. “Our growth demonstrates that there is a desire by industry providers to understand and promote a common set of standards. As with the growth of all new services, the public wants to have reliable and bona fide suppliers and the WTA helps to support the credible growth of wellness tourism.”
Categories of membership are DMOs (Destination Marketing Organisations), Suppliers (hotels, resorts, retreat facilities, wellness travel companies and tour operators), Travel agencies/agents & advisors, Solo (wellness practitioners, educators and industry consultants), and Media (both trade and consumer looking to educate their readers on the subject.)
Co-Founders of the WTA are Accor Hotels, Canyon Ranch and Travel to Wellness, with Founding Members Art of Living Retreat Center and the Monaco Government Tourist Office.