Here’s an interesting fact to share with potential employees: Americans whose first job was in a travel-related industry obtained an average career salary of $81,900, significantly higher than those starting off in healthcare, manufacturing, construction or most other U.S. industries.
Moreover, nearly 40% ended up earning an annual salary of $100,000 or more. Even travel-industry employees who had only a high school degree or less reached an average career salary of $69,500.
Those are among the findings of a new report from the U.S. Travel Association, “Travel: America’s Unsung Hero of Job Creation.” The report uses data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics to highlight the quality of jobs in the travel industry as well as the large number of travel industry jobs that are created by small businesses.
“Small businesses are the backbone of American employment, and travel is a top small business employer,” said U.S. Travel Association president and CEO Roger Dow. Dow noted that he started his own career as a lifeguard at “a 12-hotel chain called Marriott. Many years later I departed the company, which by then had expanded worldwide, as the senior vice president of global sales.”
Travel is top small business employer
The report also found that the leisure and hospitality sector is the No. 1 small business employer in the United States. It noted that the sector’s growth rate––17% from 2010 to 2016––was 30% higher than growth in the rest of the private sector.
After the travel industry suffered along with the rest of the economy in 2008-2009, travel employment recovered a full two years faster than the rest of the economy.
“President Trump is right to be concerned about our nation’s trade balance—and we’re here to remind him that travel is one area in which we can win,” Dow said. “International inbound travel is an export and creates good, non-outsourceable jobs in every corner of the country. To keep that growth going, we need to do all we can to welcome more visitors to our country and keep travel and tourism strong.”
View the full text of “Travel: America’s Unsung Hero of Job Creation” here.