The European Federation of Rural Tourism (Ruraltour) is a professional tourism trade organization representing a tourism sector with an estimate of 500.000 micro-enterprises and about 5-6,5 million bed places. It is formed by 31 professional and trade organizations from 28 countries of geographical Europe. The comprehensive network covers country and rural businesses such as tourism farms, accommodation in private rural homes (B&B or Self-Catering units), traditional gastronomy, adventure, sport, heritage and cultural activities and associated events related to visitor interests and experiences. As a whole, this sector stands for about 15% of the European tourism capacity.
Rural Tourism comprises micro-enterprises, self-employed, and services that are not business activity similar to the concept of “collaborative economy”. Their needs in skills and training follow a “generalist” concept, rather than high-level specialization in a specific area. Our longstanding experience and repository of best practice cases about how to achieve adequate training and support outside formal concepts will be integrated into NTG.
Ruraltour provides linkage with other EU tourism industry structures such as NET, ENOS and ATTA, has good contacts with the private sector representing the “Collaborative Economy” (AirBnB, HomeAway), and is actively involved in EU structures for Rural Development (Civil Dialogue Group on Rural Development and ENRD).