What is Tourism?
Traveling for pleasure, entertainment, business or other purposes is generally termed as Tourism. Travel and tourism sector is an important part of any economy. The contribution of the industry to global GDP is estimated at around 10.2% in 2016. Also, it has employed around 292 million people across the globe which means 1 out of every ten jobs on the planet is created in travel and tourism industry. Tourism may be domestic or international. The business of tourism involves attracting, accommodating and entertaining tourists and organizing tours and travel. Thus, careers in travel and tourism offers an excellent opportunity to learn, grow and earn. The best part of developing a career in travel and tourism industry is that the sector has job opportunities for skilled as well as semi-skilled professionals. Even an average student from a mediocre college can build an exciting career in travel and tourism sector by working hard and learn the tricks of the trade. Here we will discuss the jobs and careers in travel and tourism industry in Indian context.
Travel and Tourism Industry
The tourism and travel industry is the largest service industry in India.
It employed around 8.78% of the total workforce in the country in 2011.
A World Travels & Tourism Council report pegs this number at 9.3% in
2016. The industry supported 40 million jobs.
This is an increase of around 0.5% since 2011. It proves that this industry
is growing faster than the overall employment market in India.
The travel and tourism is a $136 billion industry, of which the tourism and
hospitality sector contributes $47 billion. This industry has a share of
7.5% in the total GDP of the nation.
The above figures represent only the organized sector within this industry.
A large part of the sector falls within the unorganized sector.
According to the estimates of the World Travels & Tourism Council, the
tourism contributed around $210 billion or Rs.14 lakh crore to the Indian
This is around 9.6% of the total GDP and is approximately 2.1% higher than
the organized sector. It means the unorganized segment also contributes
Although there are differences in the estimates from various agencies due
to the inaccuracies in statistics from the unorganized sector, tours &
travel industry is one of the largest in the country in terms of revenue,
contribution to the economy and employment generation.
Millions of people are employed directly and indirectly in this sector.
The WTTC report also predicts that this industry will grow at a speed of
6.8% which is almost equal to the GDP growth of India.
The industry is likely to reach $420 billion or Rs.28.49 lakh crore by
2027. This will be almost 10% of the economy.
According to the Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Report of 2017, among
136 nations, India ranks at 40.
There is also considerable support from the Government of India to project
the country as an attractive tourist destination.
A unique and yet important part of this industry in India is Medical
Tourism. It currently accounts for $3 billion and is slated to reach $8
billion by 2020.
India offers high-quality medical treatments at a fraction of the cost in
the developed nations.
Approximately 200,000 medical tourists visit India each year.
The above statistics show the massive size of the tours and travel industry
in the country and the potential it offers for employment.
It is probably one of the largest business segments in terms of the type of
employments it generates.
Right from a ticket booking clerk to a medical doctor, millions of Indians
constitute this industry and millions more will be needed in years to come.
If you aspire to a successful career, this industry has a lot to offer.
Keep reading to understand how you can become a successful professional in
Jobs in Travel Industry
Tours and Travel is a vast industry with millions of people working
directly and indirectly with it.
This section analyses some of the jobs that are directly associated with
India is a tourism hub with people from different parts of the world
visiting the country. They have different dietary habits.
Additionally, India is a land of diversity with thousands of cuisines. This
makes a chef one of the most prominent persons in the tourism value chain.
If you have a penchant for cooking and like to whet the appetite of people
with your delicacies, this is the perfect profession for you.
Not only it pays well but also brings recognition. Some of the chefs have
gone on to become celebrity chefs in the country.
There are numerous options in this field. Right from running your own
eatery in a popular tourist destination to working with a five-star hotel,
options are virtually unlimited.
At the beginning of your career, you can expect a salary of above Rs.20,000
working with a decent sized hotel.
There is a significant upside to it and soon you could be earning upward of
As a hotel management graduate, your starting pay could range between
Rs.25,000 and Rs.30,000.
With a few years’ experience, you can earn well over Rs.50,000 a month.
Apart from the basic salary, there are several other perks you can avail as
a manager in a top hotel.
For the unskilled and semi-skilled segment, the job of a waiter is
suitable. It doesn’t require much qualifications or education.
However, those working in premium hotels need to know English and should
have an amicable personality.
Depending on the type of hotel, the starting salary can range between
Rs.7,000 to Rs.30,000.
You may either work with a travel agency or can start your own business by
taking a franchise.
As an employee of a company such as Thomas Cook, you can expect a starting
salary of Rs.20,000 to 25,000.
As a tour guide, you’ll have the opportunity to interact with people from
Apart from the monetary benefits, you also get to learn a lot from this
Meeting hundreds of new people each day, all from different nations and
cultures, and talking to them has its own joy.
You learn a lot from them and also expand your horizon while also
displaying to them the glory and heritage of your own country.
At the early stages of your career, you can expect a salary of Rs.17,000.
However, several tourists also give handsome tips.
You can also earn more by arranging a customized tour for them.
There’s also a tremendous scope in this profession to start your own
Since the name of the industry is tours and travels, traveling is its most
important activity. A tourist shall visit several places in the country.
It makes ticketing a lucrative career option. As a ticketing agent, you can
earn commission or fee by either working individually or collaborate with a
larger firm such as Makemytrip or GoIbibo.
Alternately, you also have the option to work as an employee with similar
organizations. Even there are numerous government undertakings and
India is fast pushing its tourism industry. It means tourism department in
all states employee a large number of people mainly in jobs such as
As a fresher, you can expect a salary ranging from Rs.15,000 to Rs.18,000.
According to the WTTC figures, 8.89 million foreign tourists visited India in 2016.
They carry foreign currencies with them.
Many of them get their money exchanged at the airports, but that might not
suffice their requirement.
Alternately, they may choose to exchange their money locally within India.
All the large private and PSU banks offer this service apart from the forex
agencies such as American Express, Thomas Cook, etc.
Working in this profession requires a thorough understanding of regulatory
guidelines such as Foreign Exchange Monetary Act (FEMA) and anti-money
A person with right knowledge can have a successful career in this field.
A new employee in a forex department of a bank or moneychanger can expect a
starting salary of Rs.25,000 per month, which increases substantially with
This profession also requires several sales executives and managers due to
the intense competition among the banks and money changers
As a sales person in this field, apart from salary, you can also earn good
Travel and Tourism Courses
The qualification requirements vary from job to job in this sector. Some of
them require unskilled or semi-skilled workforce while several others need
highly trained manpower.
An official working in the forex department of a bank or moneychanger
preferably needs to hold a bachelor’s or master’s degree in commerce.
A hotel manager should have a degree in hospitality management.
BBA in Tours and Travels is an excellent qualification for those seeking
placements in this sector, especially the organized part of it.
An MBA degree in marketing and hospitality is beneficial for those who seek
a job in a customer facing role.
Hotel management is suitable for someone who’d aim for a job as a chef or
hotel executive and manager.
MBA Finance is suited for those working in the finance department of
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) offers several courses
suitable for those in the aviation part of the tours and travels industry.
Almost every person can make a career in this industry, which means there
is no restriction on the type of qualification.
You can find a job suitable for your qualification or pursue a course for a
profession that interests you.
Several colleges in India offer full-time courses in tourism. They also
offer placement assistance. Some of the top colleges are listed here.
- CT Group of Institutions
It offers MSc in Airline Tourism and Hospitality Management and is
affiliated with Punjab Technical University. It’s situated at Jalandhar,
- Amity University
It’s one of the most popular universities in India and offers tourism
courses among others.
It has a four year Bachelor’s degree in Tourism and Travel Management. The
University’s location is Gurgaon.
- NSHM Knowledge Campus
Situated in Durgapur, it offers three years Bachelor in Business Management
with specialization in Travel and Tourism Management.
· TransGlobe School of Logistics and Aviation Management
The instituted is situated in Kozhikode and offers a one-year undergraduate
Diploma in Aviation, Hospitality, and Travel Management.
· Vivekanand Institute of Hotel and Tourism Management
This Rajkot based Institute offers a full-time 4-year bachelor’s degree in
Hotel and Tourism Management.
Short term courses in Travel and Tourism
Apart from the aforementioned long duration courses, you may pursue shorter
These courses last from a few hours to a few months. Several of them are
self-learning courses that you can pursue at your own pace in an e-learning
Some of these courses are listed below:
|1||Accounting and Financial Management for Travel Agencies||IATA||E-learning||15 hours|
|2||Advanced Skills in Journey Pricing and Ticketing||IATA||E-learning||90 hours|
|3||Certificate course in Travel & Tourism||University of Delhi||Classroom||4 months|
|4||Airfares & Ticketing||University of Delhi||Classroom||2 months|
|5||Computer Reservation System||University of Delhi||Classroom||1.5 months|
|6||Kuoni Academy M.I.C.E. Management Program||Kuoni Academy||Classroom||6 months|
|7||Kuoni Academy Travel Management Program||Kuoni Academy||Classroom||6 months|
|8||Kuoni Academy Travel Management and Tele Sales Program||Kuoni Academy||Classroom||6 months|
|9||Kuoni Academy Travel and Tourism Business Development|
|Kuoni Academy||Classroom||6 months|
|10||Computer Application in Tourism and Travel Industry||Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management||Classroom||2 months|
|11||Computerised Reservation System||Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management||Classroom||3 months|
|12||Air Travel, Fares and Ticketing||Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management||Classroom||1 month|
|13||Airlines, Travel Agency and Tour Operation Management||Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management||Classroom||1 month|
You may pursue these short-term courses along with your regular college
degree or while working.
They give you the much-needed skill upgrade to help build a successful
While opting for the short-term courses, it’s advisable to seek the
feedback from others who’ve pursued these courses.
Salary and Compensation
We’ve already discussed the starting salaries for some of the professions
in this industry.
With experience and performance, you can scale great heights and earn an
An advantage of working in the tours and travel industry is that it offers
a fast-paced career growth. You can scale great heights faster than other
This industry requires people that have not just the right occupational
skills but also soft skills. So, if you inculcate the right soft skills and
continuously improve your occupational skills, getting high salaries is
much easier in this industry than any other sector.
An executive chef with a five-star hotel with a few years of experience can
even earn more than Rs.3,00,000 a year.
Managers in hotels are also well-paid. Those working in the catering
department of international flights earn really well and also enjoy other
perks such as free hotel stay and food at places where they halt as well as
discounted airline tickets for their family members.
Tours and Travel industry is a booming sector. The Indian Government, as
well as the State Governments, have an immense focus on the development of
The sector has grown faster than the Indian economy and will continue to
grow for at least the next 10 years.
This sector is also least likely to be affected by automation as no machine
can replace a skilled chef or a friendly tour guide.
Apart from the decent starting salary, there’s tremendous potential to grow
real fast in this sector.
Some of the courses mentioned above can give a fillip to your career in