areas of tourism

March 08, 2024 •

8 min reading

8 lucrative career paths in the hospitality and tourism industry

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The hospitality field is one of the most encompassing industries in the world. It can include every element of vacation, tourism and recreation experiences. This is something our EHL graduates quickly learn as the hospitality industry red carpet rolls out in every possible direction after graduation. When you have hospitality training and experience on your resume, your career potential becomes boundless.

While hospitality may be defined by the hotel industry, the true options are far more vast than you may have imagined. Your skills can take you anywhere in the world, working with any aspect of travel and leisure, from management to experience coordination to supply chain. If you are considering your next step in an illustrious hospitality career, we would like to spotlight eight different career paths that you might take, each encompassing a large sector of the hospitality industry.

Here are eight common sectors where our students find success after graduation.

  • Accommodation
  • Travel
  • Food & Beverage
  • Event Planning
  • Tourism
  • Sports & Recreation
  • Entertainment
  • Wellness & Leisure

Careers in accommodation

The accommodation sector has never been more diverse. While there are millions of hotels and resorts around the world, there are also many other types of accommodation you might coordinate, creating perfect vacation experiences of every size and style. There are vacation rentals and, luxury accomodation from palaces and 5-star hotels to luxury rentals. There are cabins, cottages, and destination lodges as well as campgrounds and RV parks. You can help hotels expand their accommodation offerings beyond interior rooms or cultivate unique properties and accommodation experiences.

In another branch, you can take your hospitality experience into the corporate world, helping to facilitate corporate housing which fulfills the needs of traveling, temporary, and relocated professionals who are working away from home. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 2023 featured nearly 2 million jobs in Accommodation in the US alone.

Each branching accommodation path provides the opportunity to create exquisite stays with the perfect balance of comfort, convenience, and logistics.


Traversing the travel industry

The travel industry often scoops up a percentage of hospitality professionals. 2023 saw over 320 million travel jobs worldwide. Airports and airline hosts rely on hospitality to make air travel more comfortable for their passengers.

Cruise ships make up an enormous global industry and specialize in diverse hospitality experiences from prow to stern. Royal Caribbean Cruises, Carnival, and Norwegian offer the greatest number of cruise ship jobs, but you may have just as much fun with a smaller cruise line that travels coasts that you love.

You can step into the specialized world of chartered travel including chartered planes, boats, helicopters. Or you can join a large travel company providing your hospitality expertise wherever it is needed most. If you love trains, rail travel offers a truly unique opportunity to create on-train hospitality experiences, especially those few great trans-continental train lines still in operation for both tourism and long-distance travel.

Immerse in food & beverage

Our foodie graduates often dive into the experience-rich world of the food and beverage industry. There is simply no end to the food-oriented job opportunities, and these take every possible shape and form.

You could be coordinating banquets for hotel-hosted events or managing a gourmet restaurant anywhere in the world. You can become a caterer or coordinate for a large catering company or you can open your own food establishment somewhere with plenty of demand and tourism to fill your seats.

Food and beverage professionals can join any venue, including theaters, stadiums, event halls, grand hotels, cruise ships, restaurants and restaurant chains - you can even coordinate food for museums, schools, large business facilities, or food truck empires. The possibilities are literally endless, as the food and beverage industry touches every aspect of modern life. 

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Become an event planning expert

Events are the spice of life. Weddings, conferences, festivals, fashion shows, concerts, theater productions; the list is endless. The BLS predicts 7.5% employment growth for events planning from 2022 to 2032.

You can choose a venue, a favorite event type, or work for an organization that puts on one spectacular event each year. A skilled events coordinator is someone who makes unforgettable moments and large gatherings into a guaranteed success.

Skills that hospitality graduates learn through education and internship are critical for event planning. Highly organized people who thrive in chaos and love adapting to unexpected challenges will typically do well in the events industry. You will also get a chance to work with celebrities of every possible type, from Ted Talk tech leaders to pop stars and Michelin star chefs.

You will build your name making magical events possible, creating impossibly entertaining environments that are also expertly designed to provide everything event-goers and vendors need to bring the experience together.


Creating tourism experiences

Tourism is the art of putting together full-scope travel experiences. There are many areas of tourism, professional in this field arranges tour packages, plans whole trips, or coordinates or hosts excursions for traveling clients.

As people embrace the idea of travel experiences over more chaotic destination immersion, the tourism sector only continues to grow. According to ILO, over 230 million people work in tourism worldwide. This is more than just being a travel agent or a tour guide. Venues, destinations, and even whole cities hire tourism professionals to coordinate desirable tourism packages that will entice visitors to take specific journeys through the available experiences at each destination.

Tourism jobs include destination management, tour package design, personal travel planning, tour coordination, and a certain amount of special event planning. In fact, the tourism industry becomes complex as coordinated events are further integrated into hospitality and travel packages.

If you enjoy many aspects of the hospitality world, enjoying things like wedding planning, travel planning, museum experiences, foodie tours, and personally ensuring that travelers have a wonderful time; tourism might be the perfect career path.


The world of sports & recreation

There is no denying that sports plays a profound role in the travel and hospitality industry. People will cross the world to see their favorite sports team play in an big game - or to experience legendary golf courses in breathtaking global destinations. Some chase the waves for surf and high-adrenaline water sports, some want to swim over every magnificent coral reef that the world's oceans have to offer.

Sports and recreation is a vast sector of the hospitality industry, and one you could become a master of - connecting travelers with the thrilling experiences they have been dreaming about. A sports and recreation professional will specialize in exciting experiences, and you can operate from either end of the process.

You can become a destination coordinator, finding tourists who want to experience the locations and activities of your organization, or you can approach from the travel direction - directing travelers toward the venues and activities they desire. If you understand that need for thrills, personal challenge, and unforgettable moments, you will be able to bond with your clients and help them truly capture the destination sports and recreation experiences they are looking for.

To learn more about what to expect in a hospitality education, chat today with real EHL students about their experience.


The glamorous entertainment industry

Hospitality has always been a gateway into the world of fame and entertainment. Legendary hotels, resorts, and destination venues are often the location of major shows, hosting concerts, after-parties, and other events that become part of celebrity tours. Other venues are popular locations for charity galas and fundraiser events where the rich and famous gather to do their philanthropic work and rub elbows with those who share a different kind of wealth and power.

The BLS predicts jobs in entertainment and recreation management are growing by 8%, which is well above the occupational average.

If you have always wanted to make these glamorous moments into reality with a chance to meet and endless parade of people whose faces are known across the globe, entertainment hospitality is the path for you.


Luxurious wellness and leisure

Perhaps the fastest-growing sector of the hospitality industry, however, is wellness and leisure. It has seen 40% growth through 2023 and is one of the leading growth sectors in the US alone. "Wellness" has become a concept that you see everywhere. It is something we are all focusing on, and in every aspect of life. Mental wellness, workplace wellness, physical wellness, and luxurious wellness are at the top of everyone's mind. It's no surprise that spas, massage studios, salons, and leisure facilities are rapidly growing in ever aspect of hospitality.

Today, when people travel, they want to experience more wellness and luxuriant relaxation than ever before. Every business trip should include at least one day at the spa. Every family vacation will likely include a girl's day out getting pampered. Even eco-tourists are seeking out secluded hot springs and organic facials. Some seek out yoga, pilates, and fitness classes. Some go on retreats or try a guided meditation course. The possibilities are endless.

This vast and growing sector can be found anywhere people travel or vacation. If you specialize in wellness and leisure, you'll find work in every corner of the industry and the world.


The limitless career options of EHL Hospitality Graduates

At EHL, we proudly prepare our students for an illustrious career in the hospitality industry. Your options are not limited just to the traditional roles surrounding hotels or tourism, however. Hospitality is a truly vast industry that encompasses every aspect of travel, events, and experiences. From the many styles of booked accommodation to unique destinations and leisure experiences all over the world - once you are equipped with the hospitality skills and intern experiences learned through EHL education, your potential career paths become truly limitless.

Let your passion and natural talents guide you toward the best path for you. Do you love organizing chaos and seeing events come together? Go into event and venue coordination. Do you love all things food and gourmet? Find your place in the food and beverage world. If you are enchanted by unique experiences, help others find their bliss in tourism or sports recreation. Or, if bliss is your specialty, guide others to the wellness treatments they need to return home feeling refreshed and energized.

Best of all, hospitality skills allow you to pivot at any moment, trying a new branch of the hospitality industry wherever your desire and job opportunities may take you. It all starts here, at EHL hospitality education.


Interested in studying hospitality management in Switzerland?

By earning not only one - but two top hospitality degrees, you will enjoy the hotel management education of the future. Learn more and download the brochure here.