First LGBT+ Tourism Summit takes place in Malta

International experts discussed market developments, new marketing strategies and the economic prospects for the LGBT travel segment at the first LGBT+ Tourism Summit last November

The Malta Tourism Authority collaborated with ITB Berlin to host the event where the opportunities and challenges offered by gay and lesbian travel were discussed.

International experts presented the latest survey findings, information on current LGBT online marketing trends, illustrating how prospects for business in LGBT+ tourism are developing, and highlighted examples of best practices.

Rika Jean-François, CSR officer at ITB Berlin, explained how the market has shifted: “With the LGBT+ community becoming more visible and gaining broader public acceptance, interest in the LGBT+ travel market has increased. LGBT travel has become one of the industry’s fastest-growing markets worldwide and with an estimated 23 million LGBT customers Europe is an extremely important source market.”

Malta claims to be one of “Europe’s friendliest destination for LGBT travellers”

With its vibrant LGBT scene, Malta ranks among Europe’s friendliest destinations for LGBT travellers. One reason is that in recent years, LGBT issues have gained a high level of cultural acceptance in all parts of society. Another positive aspect is the law amendments recently passed by the Maltese government. This year, Malta once again tops the rankings of the ILGA Europe Rainbow Map and Index for 2018, which examines the human rights situation of LGBT people in 49 countries throughout Europe. With an overall rating of 91%, Malta has achieved the highest standards in LGBT rights for the third year running and also widened the gap on other European countries. It is way ahead of Belgium, in second place with 79%, and Norway, which is in third with 78%.

Photo: Rika Jean-François, CSR officer at ITB Berlin