An emerging destination for international tourists, South Asia recorded an impressive seven percent growth in the arrival of foreign visitors in 2014. Moreover, domestic travel has steadily increased within the region, thanks to a flourishing middle class. Hence, tourism is now a major source of income for many South Asian countries. The increased travel and the explosion of the internet and mobile technology has afforded perpetrators anonymity and hidden pathways to groom children and seduce them via social media and internet games. Likewise, new travel and tourism services like home-stays, volun-tourism and the shareconomy have increased this anonymity and heightened children’s vulnerability.
This report provides an updated picture of the environment in which sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism persists in South Asia and proposes a set of recommendations to improve government, non-government and private sector responses to prevent and combat this crime. As such, it will assist in the realisation of the Sustainable Development Goals related to children’s right to live free from sexual exploitation.