Little is known about where the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) will take the tourism industry globally, or indeed what the full impact of 4IR will be.

Tourism was one of the first sectors to digitalise business processes on a global scale, according to research from the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). The tourism industry brought flight and hotel bookings online, and the sector became a digital pioneer. As information and communications technology became a worldwide phenomenon, tourism was always a consistent early adopter of new technologies and platforms.

Today, the tourism industry leads the way in 4IR. Travellers are constantly connected, constantly searching for information, constantly sharing their experiences on social media and constantly demanding that their needs are instantly gratified.

Tourism stakeholders have successfully played into this trend by applying technology to enhance the traveller experience. Airports around the world are introducing biometric technology to identify travellers and make their trip as frictionless as possible. Artificial intelligence allows hotels and travel agents to offer more personalised and tailored experiences for their clients.

In this exciting world of technological innovation, it’s important not to lose sight of the person behind the technology. The World Economic Forum shows us that as the forces of 4IR accelerate, consumers are enjoying the benefits of rapid innovation, but they are also struggling to maintain a sense of connection.

Technological innovation should therefore never be a goal in itself, but should instead be used to enhance the human experience. This was one of the main topics of discussion at a panel discussion on the impact of the 4IR on tourism at the University of Johannesburg. The panel discussion took place at a prestigious event celebrating the 50-year anniversary of the School of Tourism and Hospitality.

“We are in the business of giving the customer service,” said Arthur Gillis, CEO Platinum Hospitality Holdings. “People are glued to their devices and are more stressed than ever before. They want to come to their hotel as a place of refuge. They don’t want to be confronted with more tech that is impossible to understand or load yet another app they don’t need.”

Velma Corcoran, Country Manager for Airbnb, agrees, saying that people will always remain at the core of the tourism experience. She explained that there is an underlying fear that robots will take over the world and the tourism industry. However, the opposite is true.

Said Corcoran: “Technology connects people. Airbnb is a people-powered platform underpinned by technology. We connect people who have a space to share or people who have a passion to share, to people across the world who are looking for unique tourism experiences.”

According to Corcoran, tech will increasingly be used as an enabler for more inclusive growth. “We have seen incredible growth across the continent, and we have realised that technology can offer real potential. You can use tech to take tourism to communities that haven’t previously benefitted from tourism. They now have access to a global audience of travellers who are looking for unique experiences.”

Jurni CEO, Dr Nomvuselelo Songelwa, explained that Jurni was launched recently to address the challenge of connecting the tourism products in more isolated areas with tourists worldwide. “People are running fantastic products in the rural outskirts of our country. We can help put those on the map through technology,” she explained.

Jurni recently developed an affordable SMME booking tool and a visitor app to level the playing field and allow everyone to be able to market their tourism products in the same way. Simultaneously, Jurni is working on the development of a data hub.

“We need reliable and current data in this 4IR age to be able to make informed decisions in the tourism industry,” said Dr. Songelwa. She warns, however, that this can’t be done in isolation. “The time of gathering statistics and developing our own analysis in isolation is long gone. We have to change our mindset, behave innovatively and respond to the needs of the customers as a community. Jurni will provide incomparable tourism analysis for our country with integrated data at a granular level. The 4IR canvas is set and Jurni is painting it for the tourism sector.”

The Fourth Industrial Revolution will without a doubt continue to revolutionise the tourism industry, the experts agreed, but not without human input. “Technology does not change society; people change society,” concluded Dr Songelwa.



Every student has one or more New Year’s resolutions they intend to implement for the coming year of studies. If you are a student, let’s see how many of these 10 resolutions you can relate.

Back in school, each new year started with a beautiful and organised pencil case – I colour coded my kokie pens, my Tipp-Ex was full, and my notepads were clean and blank – waiting for me to fill them with beautiful handwriting.

That whole thing lasted about a week, if I was lucky. An organised pencil case soon became the priority of yesterday, and what started as a beautiful handwriting on page 1 soon morphed into scribbles embroidered by occasional doodle art.

I was convinced I’d break the cycle once I entered university, since this was going to be serious business. No more school play. Oh please.

But, on the bright side, I was not the only one. In fact, the yearly New Year’s resolutions I gave myself as a student turn out to be extremely widespread among the student species. Though I’m not guilty of all of these, here is a list of 10 frequent student New Year’s resolutions that tend to float around for the first odd weeks of each academic year.

1. I will do all of my readings. Not only that. I’ll do them ahead of the lecture.

Students really believe this, and the intention to actually sit down, read, and highlight each reading before every lecture and seminar is very genuine. Deep down, however, the desire to do anything else is stronger.

The first few readings always seem to go well, but soon you sit there skimming them before the lecture starts. A bit later you skim them after the lecture has already happened. And eventually, you don’t do them at all and sit there sweating in class, hoping not to be called out.

2. I will pace my assignments. No more panic. No more all-nighters.

Yes, this year, you will pace your assignments and be more productive. Each assignment will get a decent weekend’s time for thorough research and writing. But then, just when you think you have all the time in the world because all of your first essays are only due in a few weeks, the infamous all-nighter seems to have you clutched in it’s tight grip.

If three assignments have more or less the same due date, where do you think all the time for research and writing comes from? Well, not from all-nighters. With that being said, though, some students flop so hard at this resolution that they become masters of their own defective time management. They befriend sleep-deprivation, lack of synonyms, and inner frustration. One might almost say that someone who does this and still passes is somewhat of a magician.

3. I will keep my notes organised.

Some students actually manage to keep this one going for an impressive amount of time, filing each page into the right subject folder, and marking exactly what the date and topic for all the notes are.

But this skill tends to also evaporate as the year goes on. Soon, one page in your notepad contains not only notes from various subjects, but also the funny line your lecturer just dropped, and your weekend grocery shopping list.

4. I will not bunk. Not even once.

Many students do actually attend all their lectures throughout the year (they deserve a massive applause). In fact, bunking is kind of like a drug. If you’ve never tried it, you’ll never know how deliciously sinful it can feel, and therefore you won’t have the urge to do it. But once you’ve tried it, it’s hard to resist.

So when you tell yourself that for the New Year you won’t bunk, the only way it won’t flop is if you indeed don’t bunk at all. Bunking – not even once.

5. I will care about how I look for campus.

It’s a new year. You have fresh energy, fresh enthusiasm and basically just want to look amazing and put in mega effort every day. Girls start wearing mascara again, carefully fix a daily hairdo, and shave their legs more than once a week. Similarly, guys still nurture their facial hairs and spend more than 0.3 split seconds on choosing their outfit for the day.

I’d give it a good month until this too, starts to crumble.

6. I will learn how to cook and eat healthy.

By cook, I’m not talking about your mom’s awesome meals. Let’s not get carried away. But you tell yourself that from now on, you will at least use the stove or oven sometimes for a good stir-fry or baked potato. And doesn’t it taste delicious, that first healthy meal you cook for yourself? Of course it does. Which makes it even harder to understand why halfway through the year you are surviving on crackers with dip, and microwave food.

7. I will exercise more than I drink coffee.

Yep, another classic. You’ll get fit, exercise every day, get lean, detox from caffeine, and never, ever choose your bed over a run on a Sunday morning. And come that first Sunday when the plan flops, it’s not really your fault, because the sheets are too heavy for you to kick off, and the sun is actually quite harmful. You are safer in bed.

8. I will floss every day.

So this one is just… a terrible flaw that so many people are guilty of, it hardly needs elaboration. And the only time this resolution seems more unshakeable than at the beginning of every year is after you leave the oral hygienist’s practice.

9. I will be on top of my budget.

This is the year. You can feel it. You are going to start saving, and not spend a single Cent on anything you don’t strictly need. It’s time to create a budget plan and stick to it.

It seems to work okay at first, but damn, budgeting gets so tedious, and where is that receipt you put away, and what was the point again?


10. I will reject technology and stop wasting time.

That’s it. You spend far too much time locked into a screen – your phone, your computer, the lecture presentation, the TV, your tablet, video games – they are everywhere. Enough is enough. You will not touch your phone before bed anymore. You won’t play video games for more than 30mins at a time, and you absolutely won’t use instant messaging unless the content is important. And you will delete Facebook. Enough procrastination.

Hm, but that message could be important, so better check. It’s your favourite show – TV can be educational. How often do you and your friend get to play video games together? The essay is easy, so a bit of Facebook or 9gag doesn’t harm anyone. And so it begins, like in every other year, that technology has more presence in your life than you prefer – or even realise.

How to Break the Cycle

None of these resolutions are difficult to stick to once you manage to crack the vicious cycle. It is possible, I promise, because I’ve managed to actually stick to some of mine.

Relax, I said some, not all.

But so can you. Let’s see if you’ve got what it takes, and conquer at least one of the things you intend to change about your student habits.

Unfortunately, there is no magic solution to this, and what works for one person doesn’t necessarily work for another. But what is perhaps the most important thing to remember is that you absolutely can change your bad habits and behaviours – which mean you actually can succeed in sticking to your student life resolutions.



For a long time, the hospitality industry has had to make do with its notoriously tough perception, but is there more than meets the eye?

Typically associated with long hours and its tough nature, the hospitality industry can be considered a hard place to work; this is especially true for the British hospitality scene. But where do these perceptions come from?

The hospitality industry in the 1990s was renowned for its volatile kitchen environments and intense head chefs. Some chefs in the industry argue that this working environment created a respect for the industry due to the time and effort that was sacrificed for the craft. New Head Chef, Frederick Forster of Plateau restaurant in Canary Wharf, London is one of those, as he feels that era forged who he is today. The sort of tough love approach of the industry he argues built character, commitment and the ability to work under pressure in different working environments.

However, is that how the hospitality industry is today? For better or worse the industry has changed. The pressure, commitment and passion are still there but there may be less of the in-your-face volatility that was once present. But, why do we still feel that things are the same? It could be the lingering effect of years gone by or the over-dramatising of the hospitality industry on popular TV shows. Whatever it is, the industry certainly has made changes since then.

Speaking to some of our graduates and other people in the industry, they talk about the pressure and commitment that remains but express that the severe scolding and fierce head of staff that we assume are always present in hospitality aren’t a constant feature. It’s more so a pressure for quality and meeting standards.

Like most things, over time things change and it’s the same with the hospitality industry. However, what’s important here is that prospective recruits and students get a fuller picture of the industry they are getting into.

Here at CTH, we are trying to do just that by creating projects such as CTH Spotlight, which is a series of films aimed to give students an inside look into the hospitality, culinary and tourism industries. We also commend initiatives such as the collaboration between Fred Sirieix and the Institute of Hospitality. The campaign, My Hospitality World, encouraged several top hospitality employers to open their doors and offer tours, presentations and job-shadowing opportunities to those interested. Even, suggestions that the government may look at ways to improve apprenticeships and amend contract types is a step in the right direction.

Reducing the barriers to entry can only be a good thing for the growth, environment and quality of the industry.



January marks the start of the new school year, or at the very least a new school term/semester. Just in case you want a helping hand, here’s 5 ways to be successful this academic year, broken down with 5 easy quotes.


1 “The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine.” – Mike Murdock

Essentially, your brain isn’t going to absorb and retain information unless you familiarising yourself with the information you receive. That means, planning and scheduling your day to make sure you go over your notes, getting some revision done and making your workload manageable. Create a weekly routine and stick to it, so you can become accustomed to being productive outside of the classroom.


2 “Do what works for you, because there will always be someone who thinks differently.” – Michelle Obama

It’s important to find out what works best for you. Understand there are different kinds of learners; there are visual, auditory and kinaesthetic learnersFind out which one you are and work and revise using techniques that work best for your style. For example, if you’re an auditory learner, if possible, record audio of the class and play it back in your free time or write notes and record yourself reading out the notes and/or answering questions. This will help you to learn, study and revise far more efficiently.


3 “Asking for other’s guidance helps you see what you may not be able to see. It’s always important to check your ego and ask for help.” – Kenneth H. Blanchard

There is absolutely nothing wrong with asking for help. It’s imperative that you utilise the resources around you and that means the people too. Get your work checked by your teachers and lecturers and ask them for further assistance if you need it. Don’t be afraid to put your hand up in class and ask a question. Here’s a secret, often you’re not the only one in the class that has the same question, so there’s nothing wrong with asking for help. Work with people in your class whose knowledge you trust, create study groups and share different ideas with each other. Asking for help is just another means to an end and often it can reduce the time you spend suffering in silence.


4 “Show me a worrying person and I will show you a person who does not know how to relax.” – Albert E. Cliffe

It’s good to work hard, but there’s also something called overworking yourself. The brain as well as the body needs rest, as I’m sure you know. Take time to relax your mind, have fun; everything in life is about timing, there’s a time to work and there’s a time to play – make sure you do both.


5 “The early bird catches the worm.” – William Camden

A quote you’ve probably heard loads of times; in one form or another. What we mean here is, start early so you don’t leave things too late. Some people start their revision at the last minute and still manage to pass the test, but in order to have some peace of mind and increase your chances of success, start early. Start your preparation, start asking questions and start working hard early, so in essence, you stay ready, so you don’t have to get ready – Will Smith.



Tourism Deputy Minister Elizabeth Thabethe has called on young people interested in the tourism sector to approach her department for more information and for assistance in establishing their own businesses.

Addressing the local community of Mabopane, north of Tshwane, on the first day of National Imbizo Fortnight of Activism, Thabethe said tourism plays a crucial role in job creation.

“South Africa is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. People all over the world want to come to South Africa for many reasons. During the World Cup, we showed the world who we are and people loved our country,” Thabethe said on Monday.

Thabethe encouraged the community, some of whom exhibited their artwork at the imbizo, to promote tourism wherever they are.

“In tourism, we always want to get people to visit South Africa. People love our country, they love our wines and they love our food,” she said.

Thabethe called on young people to come up with programmes that speak to other young people in terms of job creation.

She said government cares about young people. “As government, we listen. Whatever you do, do it to the best of your ability and encourage other young people to get involved in the tourism sector.”

Thabethe expressed concern about young people, who go to tertiary institutions or universities, to study in courses where there are few job opportunities.

“Our country needs young people who have the relevant, scarce skills. Chefs are scarce and the department is always willing to assist young people who want to venture into tourism or to become chefs,” the Deputy Minister said.

Among those who attended the imbizo were people who wanted to start their businesses in the tourism sector.

One of them is Pule Maotshe, who matriculated five years ago and cannot secure a job. He told SAnews that he came to the imbizo to get more information about the tourism industry.

“I want to open a bed and breakfast establishment in my area. I want to get more information from the department on how to go about starting my own business and how they can assist me,” Maotshe said.

Another local, Thato Moedi, said she has always been interested in becoming a chef but did not know where to go for training.

“I’m happy that the Deputy Minister is here today and she has been talking about helping young people who are interested in becoming chefs,” Moedi said.

National Imbizo Fortnight of Activism seeks to encourage communities to participate in government programmes and initiatives in an effort to build inclusive and socially cohesive societies. –




In order for it to meet demands, the tourism industry needs learners with international qualifications.

There’s been a lot of discussion over the last few years centered around tighter regulations on travel and tourism, as well as immigration; with topics such as Brexit being the buzzword for the past year. Some conclusions have arguably been overstated, others, possibly not; nevertheless, the international tourism industry is still thriving.

It has to be said, the tourism industry is one of the largest in the world, but not only that, it is still growing. In fact, the World Tourism Organization reported that in 2017, international tourist arrivals were the highest they had been in over seven years; with emerging markets producing stronger numbers than previously shown. However, it’s not just the stats that show this growth.

The growth in the tourism industry can be seen in the number of sub-categories and packages that have been created from tourism. Packages such as weekend getaways or beach holidays are not the end-all and be-all but with better routes and more accessibility to the traveller; niche and catered packages are clearly visible.

Packages such as gastro-tourism, adventure tourism, religious tourism and others are readily available to travellers who are looking for a different experience. But, how does this growth relate with international qualifications? The growth that the tourism industry is experiencing needs to be matched with staff who understand the infrastructure of various tourism markets. The interconnectivity of the tourism isn’t just impacting travellers but it’s also impacting how staff must engage with the market.

Let’s use an example of B, a graduate looking to work as a travel agent: From a customer service point of view, an international qualification in tourism should help B to identify several types of traveller (e.g. a millennial, a couple, a family), the market the traveller is operating in, the basic infrastructure of tourism destinations; popular and emerging. In this way B has the interpersonal skills as well as the knowledge to provide great customer service to the client and offer a package that would best suit them.

The interconnectivity of the tourism isn’t just impacting travellers but it’s also impacting how staff must engage with the market.

Understanding the popular systems and platforms used in the industry, understanding destinations and motivations behind travel in different sectors, as well as emerging trends within the industry are skills that are taught. At CTH we go even further and have made it so that our programmes are adaptable, adaptable in the sense that CTH Approved Centres are encouraged to use relevant sources from the region they teach in. For example, they may use case studies and examples of companies from their region that relate to the industry. In this way, learners get a specialised understanding of the industry where they are studying as well as a holistic one of international tourism.



The Tourism industry is booming. From Cape Town to Cairo, tourism numbers have been increasing year on year. In fact, for the seventh straight year the sector has outperformed the global economy! New hotel chains, resorts and restaurants have popped up in locations across the country and globe- bringing dynamic, rewarding new career opportunities. Thinking of jumping on the bandwagon and getting involved? Studying an international tourism programme is your first step to success!

 Here are 5 Benefits of ITH International Tourism Programmes:

  1. Internationally Recognized

Local may be lekker, but not when it comes to global travel ambitions! The tourism industry spans borders, oceans and continents-  a truly international, cosmopolitan affair. Don’t limit yourself to a small corner of it! From the bustling restaurants of New York City to the palm fringed beach resorts of Thailand, our UK-registered ITHSA tourism programmes are valued and recognized internationally. The result? Plenty of opportunities to work abroad in a variety of tourism industries and locations. The world is your oyster!


  1. Professional Associations

The saying goes- you are the company you keep! We take this literally. The ITHSA is associated with professional industry leaders and benefits from relationships with CTH- a leading professional membership and awarding body in the UK. CTH has partnerships with major international employers and academic institutions and this helps us keep industry standards high and courses relevant.

  1. University Recognition

Always wanted degree status? In the eyes of International universities, you’re almost there! The ITHSA’s portfolio of CTH qualifications is considered equivalent to degree-level studies. If you have achieved one of these, you can enter the second or final year of a range of tourism and hospitality degree programmes overseas and convert to a degree. Hello bragging rights!

  1. Flexible Options

Variety is the spice of life when studying an ITH tourism programme! You can study anything from Tourism Management Programmes to Culinary Programmes and Short Courses in VA Earth and Ticketing. There are study options at various levels and academic stages-foundation to postgraduate. Furthermore, you have the option to study full – time or part- time depending on your unique preferences and needs.

  1. Employment Opportunities

With an ITH International Tourism course, you’ll get your foot in the door. CTH has developed great working relationships with a multitude of companies in the tourism and hospitality sector, providing a level of industry endorsement for our programmes that adds value when applying for jobs. With an international reputation, associated hotels and industry brands will be more likely to employ you!


Thinking of studying an International Tourism Programme? ITHSA has a range of Tourism courses perfect for you. Visit for more info:

The Radisson Hotel Group has geared itself up for hotel growth in South Africa with a focus on scale in key cities. “As part of our five-year development plan, we have identified key cities for scaled growth, three of which are located in South Africa – Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban,” said Andrew Mclachlan, senior vice president, development, sub-Saharan Africa, Radisson Hotel Group during the THINC Africa Conference.

“We plan to develop and operate multiple hotels across our portfolio of brands and market segments within each of these cities, increasing our presence in Cape Town and Johannesburg to at least 10 hotels per city and Durban to at least five hotels. With economic headwinds we have identified opportunities to exploit our vast knowledge and experience in converting unbranded, underperforming hotels or underperforming office or apartment buildings and reposition them to the right brand and market segment within the Radisson Hotel Group brand portfolio.

“In addition, we are not ignoring the smaller cities and larger towns across South Africa where we’ve identified potential to penetrate the market with either our midscale Park Inn by Radisson brand or upscale Radisson.”

As part of the company’s recent rebranding to Radisson Hotel Group, a new brand architecture was introduced, leveraging the brand’s equity to drive awareness in the marketplace and increase marketing efficiency across its global portfolio.

“In sub-Saharan Africa, we aim to add 50 hotels, of which 65% of our future hotel supply will come from our newer brands, specifically Radisson, which is positioned in the full-service upscale segment, positioned between Radisson Blu in the upper upscale and Park Inn by Radisson in the upper midscale segments,” said McLachlan. “In addition, we will selectively add a number of key Radisson Collection hotels and grow on the successful opening of RED Radisson in Cape Town in the lifestyle upscale segment of the market.”

With the increased demand in serviced apartments, the Radisson Hotel Groups’ serviced apartment concepts are an extension of the Radisson Blu, Radisson and Park Inn by Radisson brands. These properties offer long-stay guests contemporary design, beautiful living areas and magnetic social spaces.

African hotel footprint growth

In a period of strong growth, the Radisson Hotel Group has doubled its African portfolio within the last four years, and year to date have signed seven more hotel deals and is scheduled to open at least three new hotels across the African continent before year end. This growth has spiked the group’s portfolio in Africa to almost 90 hotels (18,000+ rooms) in operation and under development across 30 countries.

The 2018 W Hospitality Pipeline Report ranked the group’s flagship brand, Radisson Blu, as the leading individual hotel brand with the largest number of hotels under construction in Africa. With 111 hotel brands active in Africa today, Radisson Blu leads the way in Africa with more hotels under development than any other hotel brand.

“Our strategy will reinforce our presence in South Africa as we continue to focus on delivering on our expanding pipeline,” concluded McLachlan.




There’s a race on internationally among big hotel groups to unveil hotels that feature rooms equipped with the Internet of Things (IoT) devices that can carry out a variety of tasks for guests. This state-of-the-art hotel experience will likely become commonplace globally, but the question is, is South Africa readyfor such a development?

To test the waters, Marriott International has already worked up a version, the IoT Guestroom Lab – powered by Marriott’s Innovation Lab at the company’s corporate headquarters – creates a “smart” hotel room using multiple responsive IoT systems, devices and applications to communicate with one another to serve guests and optimize hotel operations. The technology inside the lab, for instance, allows a user to ask a virtual assistant for a 6:30 a.m. wake-up alarm, start a yoga routine on a full-length mirror, request additional housekeeping services and start the shower at the desired temperature stored in their customer profile – all by voice or app.

Following the three-month-long IoT Guestroom Lab, Marriott, Samsung and Legrand will analyze feedback. Consumers will start to see elements of the technology in international hotel rooms within the next five years.

The evolving consumer

Already, local consumers have grown accustomed to, and, indeed, expect, new technology to facilitate their relationship with brands, whether that’s via chatbots on websites or apps, or in the ways they experience hotels, such as Keyless entry, Mobile Check in for example. Naturally, these developments are tested on a live market as brands want to ensure that they’re fully functional and integrated with all other systems and channels before going live on their properties.

The benefit to smart hotel room systems is that they can be implemented in both new builds and retro-fitted to existing properties. The playing field is level across the board, although different properties will have different requirements, so each one would select a portfolio of features according to its needs and the needs of the market as well as the end consumer.

Since international visitors are a major driver of business into South Africa’s hospitality sector, it makes sense that this race among hotels to implement smart hotel rooms will have a direct impact on the hospitality experience locally. Local hotels must continue to evolve their guest experience in accordance with changing preferences. Conversely, the South African traveler heading to other countries will encounter smart hotel rooms and not want to return to old-school, static experiences.

There’s a concern that implementation costs may be high, however, since this is a long-term strategy that will likely only unfold after five years. Hotels have time to prepare, especially in terms of allocating budgets. It’s exciting that we’re seeing this happen in our generation – up until recently, the hotel stay experience was fairly predictable, from check-in to check-out. With the rise of digital and mobile, opportunities to enhance this experience have grown exponentially. This, in turn, has driven a competitive spirit among hotel brands to ensure that they’re ahead of the game.

A further indication of evolving customer expectations is that customers are using voice-operated devices such as Alexa in their own homes and are growing used to doing so. In South Africa, the market for this is relatively small, but growing. We’re late adopters, in terms of global technology, but this also has the benefit that we’re not a test market. By the time these kinds of solutions are rolled out, the initial bugs have been addressed, so even if we’re only seeing version 2.0 when these solutions are eventually rolled out, we’re actually catching up with the rest of the world quite quickly.

The race for the smart hotel room must never compromise on guest experience, so ensuring that at all times, the best possible stay experience takes place must be prioritised above flashy technology. As with any element of business strategy, it must be aligned with ROI and efficiency, along with listening to guests to hear what they want and experience.



If you think back to the last holiday you had, what were the highlights that you remember? The spacious hotel room with a view of the sea? The planned excursions while you were away? Or the mouth-watering food served at the fancy restaurant you went to?

There are many people behind the scenes who make things happen so that you can enjoy your holiday, from the travel agent who booked your flights and accommodation, to the housekeeper at the hotel, and the local travel guide who showed you around.

If you’re looking for exciting career opportunities in this line of work, look no further. Here are the top 10 careers in Tourism & Hospitality.



Travel Agents research, plan, and book trips for individuals and groups. Although people are starting to research and book their travel plans online, it’s often easier to use a Travel Agent, as they have years of experience and knowledge. They are able to help with flight bookings, hotel selection, transfer arrangements, and holiday activities.

If you’re considering becoming a Travel Agent, you will need great organisational skills, attention to detail, and the ability to think on your feet.



Hotel Managers oversee all aspects of running a hotel – from housekeeping and general maintenance to budget management and marketing of the hotel. If you’re considering a career as a Hotel Manager, you will need excellent interpersonal skills, experience in the hospitality industry, and a number of years’ experience in managing employees.

You will be responsible for the daily running of the hotel, including recruiting, training and supervising staff; managing budgets; planning maintenance work; dealing with customers’ complaints; overseeing reservations; promoting and marketing the hotel; and ensuring that the hotel complies with health and safety regulations.



Spa Managers are responsible for the day-to-day running of health and/or beauty spas. They manage a spa’s finances, employees, and services. Many of the tasks are business-related and can include recordkeeping, getting involved in promotional campaigns, maintaining stock inventories, and payroll management.

Spa Managers typically create weekly work schedules, oversee general spa maintenance, train new employees, and arrange staff workshops on new treatments. Often, experience in spa management is essential when applying for a position.



A Tour Operator typically combines tour and travel components to create holiday packages. He or she will deal with various service providers, including bus operators, airlines and hoteliers.

Tour Operators prepare itineraries for various destinations and will often monitor trends in popular destinations in order to put together attractive holiday packages for clients. Tour Operators mainly deal with Travel Agents, while Travel Agents deal with the public. Tour Operators will often visit destinations to check whether they should include them in their packages. If you enjoy travelling, this might be the job for you.



Organising any event or conference is time consuming, so an Event and Conference Organiser will help with the finer details of planning an event. The role is hands-on and often involves working as part of a bigger team. Event and Conference Organisers co-ordinate every detail of meetings and conferences, from the speakers and meeting locations to the printed materials and audio-visual equipment.

If you’re interested in becoming an Event and Conference Organiser, you will need to be able to think on your feet, pay attention to detail, deal with clients and suppliers, and work under tight deadlines. You will also have to be willing to work long hours in order to ensure the success of an event.



Tour Guides work in the travel industry, and give guided tours to groups of visitors/tourists. Tour Guides must have expert knowledge of specific areas, including natural features, historic sites, museums, and other tourist destinations. Guides may give walking tours, bus tours, or even boat tours.

If you decide to become a Tour Guide, you will probably get most of your experience on the job. You will need excellent communication skills – and speaking more than one language will definitely benefit you.



If you hear “Executive Chef”, you might think of the local celebrity chef Reuben Riffel, or the renowned UK-based chef Gordon Ramsay. The Executive Chef is in charge of a restaurant’s kitchen, and is responsible for managing the kitchen staff, planning the menu, sourcing the freshest ingredients, and making sure that food hygiene is maintained throughout the restaurant. An Executive Chef must be able to spot problems and resolve them quickly and efficiently.

If you’re passionate about cooking for a crowd and think you might have what it takes, this might be the perfect career for you.



In short, a Wine Sommelier is an expert in wines. A Wine Sommelier is passionate about wine. He or she is a highly trained and knowledgeable wine professional, specialising in all aspects of wine service. Five-star restaurants will often employ a Sommelier to develop their wine list and to help customers find a wine within their budget that suits their tastes and complements their food.

As a Sommelier, your day might not start until 14:00, when you review your inventory, meet with suppliers, and arrange to taste wines. Before the restaurant opens for dinner, you go over the wine list with your staff. Then you work the floor, seeing to customer’s needs. Your day might not end until 01:00 or 02:00 in the morning.



A PR Manager manages a brand’s reputation, and will plan, develop, and implement specific strategies to build and maintain the overall brand and reputation. Often, the PR Manger will also act as the company’s spokesperson. In the Tourism and Hospitality environment, a PR Manager might work for a hotel chain, a cruise company, or a game reserve.

The job will involve writing and syndicating positive press releases about the brand, arranging events at the hotel (including press conferences, exhibitions, open days, and tours) and connecting with relevant influencers in the industry. PR Managers will also have to deal with potential crisis situations. If you’re interested in becoming a PR Manager, you will have to have excellent communication and problem-solving skills.



Leisure Activity Co-ordinators usually work for resorts and hotel chains. They’re the people on the ground who make sure that any planned activities run smoothly. They’re also responsible for every aspect of the day-to-day management of a leisure centre, organising health and fitness programmes, promoting and marketing the business, and interacting with guests. To become a Leisure Activity Co-ordinator, you will need excellent interpersonal skills, as you will spend most of your time interacting with guests.