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Travel & Tourism hiring surge: 58 Million new jobs forecast by 2033


Driven by India’s ascent as a premier travel destination globally, the travel and tourism sector in India has witnessed remarkable growth post-pandemic. Playing a pivotal role in foreign exchange earnings, the sector contributed INR.15.9 trillion (USD 191.25 billion) to India’s economy in 2022, with an estimated increase to INR 16.5 trillion for 2023. This growth has translated into substantial employment generation across Tier I and Tier II cities. In 2020, amidst the pandemic, the tourism sector accounted for 39 million jobs, constituting 8% of the nation’s total workforce. Post-pandemic recovery, the sector has exhibited swift recuperation, with talent demand witnessing a 44% spike in August 2023, projecting an addition of 1.6 million jobs within CY 2023. With this momentum, the travel and tourism sector is poised to create 58.2 million jobs by 2033 nationwide.

Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Maharashtra emerge as the top five states attracting domestic tourists. Leading the hiring surge are cities like Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune, and Kochi, while tier 2 cities such as Jaipur, Ahmedabad, and Chandigarh are also witnessing growth. Emerging cities like Gujarat, Lakshadweep, and West Bengal are expected to contribute to job creation in the sector over the next nine years.

Key job profiles experiencing year-on-year surges include sales (18%), business development (17%), chefs (15%), travel consultants (15%), tour operators (15%), travel agents (15%), hoteliers (15%), guides (20%), wildlife experts (12%), and transportation providers (15%).

As of March 2024, 50% of online job postings in the travel and tourism sector were for freshers or entry-level positions (0-3 years of experience). Intermediate-level roles (4-6 years of experience) and top management positions (15+ years of experience) each accounted for 30% and 20% of the total demand, respectively.

The sector is witnessing significant transformation, with subsets like destination wedding travel, religious tourism, international tourism, adventure sports tourism, ecotourism, cultural tourism, and rural tourism gaining prominence. Sustainable tourism is also emerging as a significant trend, with a global market value reaching USD 180 billion.

To address talent shortages and meet growing tourist demands, companies are adopting the gig model. Since January 2023, there has been a 14% increase in gig roles within the travel and tourism sector, including positions such as translators, photographers, and tour guides, with further growth expected in the next two years.

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