Solidarity Tourism for Ukraine


Bilgin Turna G., Dinç E.

ASEAD 11. ULUSLARARASI SOSYAL BİLİMLER SEMPOZYUMU, Lausanne, Switzerland, 20 - 22 May 2023, pp.159-165

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Full Text
  • City: Lausanne
  • Country: Switzerland
  • Page Numbers: pp.159-165
  • Recep Tayyip Erdoğan University Affiliated: Yes

Abstract

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 caused a change in the global system and required countries to face some crises (Kuzemko et al., 2022). At this point, most tourism analysts supported Ukraine in addressing solidarity through tourism. The World Tourism Organization recommends transforming tourism to focus on using it as a tool for egalitarian solidarity (Pandey and Kumar, 2023). The Russia-Ukraine war has been a turning point in global politics as the fault lines of a multipolar world order have drawn more sharply. By launching the #ScreamforUkraine social media slogan, Airbnb and Uber stepped in for support. Hotels were used to house Ukrainian refugees fleeing the violence of the occupation. Similarly, people from all over the world have shown their solidarity with Ukraine through demonstrations and donations. The tourism and hospitality industry in Ukraine has been heavily affected by the war (Josiassen et al., 2023). Many hotels have been demolished and many cannot be opened due to safety concerns. The industry almost disappeared overnight. Some hotel reservation sites and chains have announced that they will cease their activities in Russia and offer free accommodation to Ukrainians (Kagan, 2023). In addition to visiting past conflict zones, “hot” war tourism is also on the rise in active war zones. At first glance, the term “war tourism” may seem like a contradiction, as tourism is believed to thrive in peaceful places. War tourism has often been associated with dark tourism with the motivation to encounter death. “Hot war tourism”, on the other hand, means traveling to an unstable environment characterized by the presence of high individual risks and where visitors experience the thrill of war first-hand, risking their limbs and property for the ultimate adventure. While few people want to experience warfare firsthand, the practice of traveling to areas of active conflict is increasing. The literature on war tourism has dealt with tourism as a means of peace and solidarity (Soulard et al., 2023). Therefore, many people will want to visit Ukraine when the war is over.