If you have ever stayed in a hotel, eaten in a restaurant, flown on an aeroplane or taken a cruise to an exotic destination you have experienced hospitality in some form or another. The hospitality industry is one of the most fascinating, exciting and dynamic industries in the world and is expanding rapidly. People are believed to be travelling more than ever and hospitality jobs exist in every country in the world. For those interested in a career in hospitality, you will find plenty of opportunities to feed your travel bug, explore different cultures and meet new people.
The travel industry includes a broad group of businesses that provide a variety of services to customers. The hospitality industry employs millions of people worldwide and places its primary focus on customer satisfaction and offering exceptional service to patrons. Hotels, resorts, cruise lines, airlines and other forms of travel and tourism all generally fall under the banner of hospitality.
The hospitality industry is unique in the way that it depends soundly on discretionary income and free time. If you were to think back to your last family vacation, would it make sense to say that you didn’t necessarily need to go on the trip, but you did as you had both the free time and the extra money available? For the most part, the hospitality industry is built on leisure or can be described as luxury based. The hospitality industry is fueled and sustained by the leisure activities of the patrons.
Considering a future career in the field of hospitality would prove to be a wise decision as the hospitality industry is recognized as one of the largest employment sectors in the world. It is believed that by 2025, 10.5% of all jobs worldwide will be in the hospitality and tourism market. The hospitality and tourism industry is seeing many inspiring developments in customer experience and technology and is a continuously growing and evolving industry. These developments and innovations will consequentially lead to more diverse employment options. Hospitality and tourism can therefore be seen as one of the most secure industries in terms of offering an extensive range of flexible and compelling employment opportunities.
In the hospitality and tourism industry there will be unique challenges that need to be tackled and therefore will require prospective job seekers to apply both critical and creative thinking skills. Travel agents, tour operators, tour guides and cabin crew are excellent examples of lucrative careers in the hospitality realm. Let’s explore the following jobs in a bit more detail.
Travel Agents research, plan and book trips for groups or individuals. They often have years of experience and knowledge in the travel and tourism field and are able to assist vacation seekers with flight bookings, hotel selection, transfer arrangements and holiday activities. Booking a vacation using the help of a travel agent can save you hours of frustration as agents generally receive information and access to promotions from resorts, cruise lines, airlines, hotels and other travel providers that aren’t available to the general public.
Tour operators use a combination of tour and travel components to create holiday packages for vacation seekers. A tour operator will deal with various service providers, such as bus operators, airlines and hoteliers. A tour operator will prepare an itinerary for various destinations and will often monitor industry trends with regards to popular destinations in order to create attractive packages for clients. Tour operators liaise with travel agents and travel agents then deal with the public.
Tour guides give guided tours to groups of visitors and tourists. It is essential for a tour guide to have expert knowledge of specific areas, including natural features, historical sites, museums and other tourist hot spots. Tour guides hold some of the most sought-after jobs in the hospitality industry. As a tour guide constantly interacts with guests, it is crucial that they have excellent communication skills, learn and remember facts quickly and must be eager to study continuously in order to accurately provide the narration that customers pay to hear.
A career in hospitality will provide you with an excellent platform to build your career from the bottom and work your way up to the top. If you display well developed organizational and communication skills, are interested in excelling at customer service, would like to work flexible hours and show dedication and commitment, hospitality is the field for you. Working in hospitality will require you to build connections with people and demonstrate a “can-do” attitude in an array of settings. Working in the hospitality industry is not just a job, it’s becomes a lifestyle. Human interaction is at the heart of hospitality. Passion, sincerity, determination and the desire for genuine human connections are the keys to your success.