The Facts

The number of people living with a disability is increasing and the World is ageing. Here are the facts

The number of people living with a disability is increasing as the World's population gets older

  • An estimated 1 billion people live with some form of disability (UN)
  • 60 million people in Middle East suffer from a form of disability
  • Due to global ageing populations, the number of people facing accessibility issues will increase faster then population growth
  • It is expected that by 2050, the number of people requiring assistive devices such as wheelchairs and communication technologies will double.
  • 39 million disabled people in Europe (Source: CSR Europe).

  • 11 million disabled people in Britain (Source: Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit).

  • Over 7 million people or 18% of the working-age population in Britain are disabled as defined as by the Equality Act 2010 (Source: Employers’ Forum on Disability).

Accessible Tourism is fast growing sector of the travel industry, central to success of Middle East hospitality

  • Accessible tourism is rapidly increasing segment. The increased demand for accessible holidays will grow rapidly as the number of people over 55 increases due to ageing populations.
  • For every disabled person, on average 1-2 people will travel with them
  • Tourists with special needs spend on average three times more than other tourists
  • Over 50% percent of people with disabilities would travel more if accessible facilities were available to them
  • On average, 88% of people with a disability take a holiday each year
  • Disabled people in the EU make 340 million trips to accessible cities in Europe each year
  • Tourist with special needs spend on average three times more than other tourists

Improved accessibility is critical to the rebound and survival of physical retail experiences in the Middle East

  • The combined spending power of disabled people is estimated to be £249 billion in the United Kingdom. This is referred to as the ‘purple pound’
  • It is estimated that supermarkets and retail stores in the UK lose £768 million income per month due to poor accessibility
  • Approximately four in five disabled customers said businesses could do more to make their stores accessible.
  • 75% of disabled people have left stores, unable to finish purchases because of their disability
  • Three quarters of disabled people say they and their families have left a venue due to accessibility issues
  • 72% of disabled people have experienced at least one barrier when playing sport
  • 68% of disabled people have experienced a barrier when visiting museum
  • The leisure industry in the UK loses an estimated £163 million per month due to poor accessibility

Accessibility is central component in the supply and management of equal educational opportunities

  • The Office for National Statistics in the UK has explored the outcomes for disabled people across a number of areas of life. Their findings validated the disaparity of employment benefits experienced in UK being rooted in a unfair inequality in educational opportunities within disabled community.

  • 21.8% of disabled people had a degree in 2019 compared with 38.0% of non-disabled people; this gap has remained consistent over the period 2013 to 2019.

  • Disabled people aged 60 to 64 years were almost two and a half times more likely to have no qualifications than non-disabled people, 24.1% compared with 10.4%, respectively.