The job market improved for travel agents, both on the leisure and on the corporate side, in 2017. That’s according to the final results from Hot Travel Jobs’ 2017 Employee / Job Seeker Survey, which polled travel agents on their length of unemployment and more.
According to the report the overall length of unemployment fell in 2017 versus 2016, pointing to an improving job market. The amount of leisure travel agents unemployed from less than a month grew from zero in 2016 to 19 percent of respondents in 2017, while those unemployed for more than a year showed the opposite trend: 60 percent of respondents had been unemployed more than a year in 2016, versus only 31 percent in 2017.
For corporate agents, those reporting being unemployed less than a month grew form six percent in 2016 to 16 percent in 2017, while those reporting being unemployed for one to six months and seven to 12 months fell from 59 percent and 15 percent, respectively, to 31 percent and 9 percent. Those being unemployed for more than one year, however, did grow from 20 percent to 44 percent.
In terms of where travel agents worked, the number of leisure agents splitting their time between an office and working remotely ticked up from 10 percent to 28.89 percent. Those working either exclusively in an office or exclusively from home fell from 63 percent and 27 percent, respectively, to 44.44 percent and 26.66 percent. Corporate agents showed a similar, but smaller, tendency, with the number of corporate agents splitting their time rising from nine percent to 14.84 percent, while the number working exclusively in an office or from home falling from 34 percent and 58 percent to 28.38 percent and 56.77 percent.
The tight job market coincided with a strong year in general for the travel industry in 2017. According to the latest data from the UNWTO, the global tourism industry set a record that year, growing 7 percent over 2016 – the highest increase since 2010.