Youth in Tourism Innovation Challenge for African Youths 2024

Youth in Tourism Innovation Challenge for African Youths is an exclusive platform being provided to innovative African youth in travel and tourism looking for funding, partnership and mentorship opportunities to present their projects to the global market place in order to find the required support for their programmes.



The Africa Youth in Tourism Innovation Summit stands as a continental stage fostering connections among youth across various sectors like tourism, travel, hospitality, aviation, academia, and related industries. It serves as a hub for engagement, learning, and advancement.

Scheduled to be hosted by Namibia’s Ministry of Environment, Forestry, and Tourism, the 6th edition of the 2024 Youth in Tourism Innovation Summit & Challenge will spotlight pivotal areas such as youth entrepreneurship, immersive student involvement in innovation, small business growth, personal evolution, and self-realization.

Delegates can anticipate interactions with both African and global leaders in tourism, entrepreneurial trailblazers, and partner organizations spanning Africa and beyond.


In collaboration with UNWTO and BDO, this annual Summit will introduce a desktop exhibition that spotlights initiatives empowering youth, trade offerings by SMEs (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises), including tour operators, tourism accommodation facilities, transportation services, educational institutions, travel tech startups, incubators, employment agencies, and avenues for professional development. The overarching aim remains to furnish an impactful platform for African youth, startups, entrepreneurs, students, and small enterprises, fostering income generation and career progression.

Requirements for Youth in Tourism Innovation Challenge for African Youths

This opportunity is accessible to African youth specifically, with an age limit of 35 years. Competitors must present a demonstration or Minimum Viable Product (MVP) within a 5-minute timeframe as part of their presentation.

Competitors are expected to present their concept with a focus on:

  1. Vision, Uniqueness, Authenticity, and Rationale:
    • Clearly articulate the vision, uniqueness, authenticity, and reasoning behind the proposed project or initiative.
  2. Innovation Addressing Challenges in the Travel & Tourism Industry in Africa Amidst COVID-19 and Beyond:
    • Demonstrate evidence of innovative solutions tackling challenges within the travel and tourism sector during the COVID-19 era and prospective future challenges. Solutions may encompass technological advancements, social entrepreneurship, educational initiatives, youth empowerment, job creation, environmental sustainability, or community development.
  3. Sustainability Impact on Travel, Tourism, Local Communities, or Related Industries:
    • Highlight the sustainability aspect of the proposed project and its anticipated impact on travel and tourism, local communities, or associated industries.
  4. Project Timelines:
    • Provide a clear outline of timelines and milestones for the project’s implementation and development.
  5. Support Required:
    • Specify the type of support needed, whether it be funding, investor involvement, mentorship, partnerships, or other forms of support critical for the project’s success.

Benefits of Youth in Tourism Innovation Challenge for African Youths

Prizes and Opportunities Offered:

  • The winner will receive a $1,000 grant seed.
  • The 1st and 2nd runners-up will each be awarded a $500 grant seed.
  • All participants, including winners, will have complimentary enrollment for short courses offered by UNWTO.
  • Additional benefits include mentorship, partnership possibilities, potential funding support, and career prospects.
  • Participants will gain access to an established network comprising African youth in Tourism Mentors and Innovators.

Interview date

  • Challenge Opens: November 1, 2023.
  • Closing date: March 1, 2024.
  • Adjudicators will shortlist the Top 5: March 22, 2024.
  • Shortlisted project promoters will be informed: on March 29, 2024.
  • Mentorship for elevator pitches (12 hours): April 10 – May 16, 2024.
  • Submission of shortlisted project promoters: 5-minute presentation at the Summit – May 15, 2024.
  • The top 3 announced on May 31, 2024.
  • Competitors are required to show a demo/ Minimum Viable Product (MVP) (5min) during the presentation.
  • Winners & Runners-up announcement: At ATLF Awards in Gaborone, Botswana October 2024.

How to apply

Interested and qualified? Go to World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) on youthtourismsummit.com to apply

For more details,visit UNWTO website

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