Episode 8

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Written this week reflecting on Season 1 of this creative experiment, excited to celebrate what we’ve achieved, and looking ahead to the future of IGNITOUR 🔥

[5 min read]


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Technology has become a driven tool for all travelers and tourism businesses. In the Arab region, 34% of tech focused startups were founded by women, and 57% of science technology, engineering, and math (STEM) graduates are women. UNWTO is committed to support Arab entrepreneurs, boosting their tourism business careers. Hence, the industry is always searching for businesswomen with technological solutions and specialized skills to oversee smart digital projects. For this reason, UNWTO launched a startup competition to find the most innovative tech-driven startups in the realm of tourism, managed by women.

( Even if you are not located in the Middle East, we encourage you to share this with your network! )

Startups must be led, owned or managed by women in the Middle East, residing in any of the following countries: Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Libya and Yemen.


Fancy a sponsored trip to Slovakia, Georgia, or Armenia? Do you have blogging or photography experience in the areas of:

Nature, food, travel, sustainable development, culture, or arts?

“Travedding — art expeditions through mountainous natural areas with the support of the Creative Europe programme. In order to tell people about these fascinating places, we are inviting bloggers and photographers to take part in the project.”

Become a part of the Travedding bloggers and photographers team and go on expeditions for unique content to the mountainous areas of Slovakia, Georgia and Armenia



c/o Æ

As we begin to reach the end of Season 1 we wanted to bring you something a little more personal. IGNITOUR is primarily a networking and professional resource but we felt it was time to take a more relatable approach and share some of the amazing people that make this newsletter possible.

Introducing Amber Johnson

Storyteller, educator, sustainable tourism champion. Originally from Nebraska, Amber has lived extensively in Europe and Asia seeking out new opportunities in ways that are rooted in learning and service to local communities. Her commitment to leaving places better than she finds them is unwavering and knack for storytelling has manifested in creative projects such as podcasts and now a full fledged blog where you can expect to find experiences, reflections, opportunities, and more related to travel, sustainable tourism, and lifelong learning!

To give you a taste of how beautifully Amber can articulate feelings we all have when engaging in movement from one place to another, enjoy this little snippet from one of her latest pieces:

When considering where to go, whether it be 30 minutes away by personal vehicle, 3 hours by bus/train, or 30 hours through multiple flights internationally, there are decisions to be made. One guiding principle, which I personally find the most valuable to contemplate, is: to what extent will I consider and treat this place like home?

Now, we may not all be defining that difficult-to-grasp-concept of home the same way so, for the purpose of this reflection, let’s consider it as: “where I feel comfortable, what I care about protecting, & where I feel connected to place.” This is a personally defined rough draft definition, but one that feels essential. Broadly speaking, every place we visit has the potential to be such a home for the local residents, not to mention a source of natural and cultural heritage that may extend beyond human life. In considering home and travel or tourism, it is important to touch on the concept–in abstract, and lived–of sustainability.

Amber Johnson, Notes from the Field: Treating Everywhere Like Home

Read the whole article and explore more of what Amber has to share here:

Lastly, we’d like to acknowledge Amber’s key role in bringing you certain content of previous episodes by way of the section known as “Show Me The Money!”. As someone who keeps it super real when it comes to the financial barriers to global experience, Amber is a tenacious funding seeker and has been able to help herself and many others find the right funded opportunities to grow personally and professionally. If you’re looking for tips - she’s your person!

c/o Amber N. Johnson

Please connect with Amber via her blog above or on LinkedIn:

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