Travel booking jobs ticked up in December, according to the latest jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
According to the BLS, the “travel arrangement and reservation services” sector added 1,200 jobs in December. That follows a two-month decline that saw such jobs fall by 900 in November and 1,000 in October. Overall, the sector added 1,900 travel booking jobs since December of last year.
Leisure and hospitality jobs continued to climb as well, adding 29,000 jobs in December. That follows a 14,000 jobs gain last month as the sector continued to recover from the impact of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. Year over year, the leisure and hospitality sector added 34,700 jobs since last December.
Overall, the unemployment rate continued to hold steady in December at 4.1 percent, as it had last month. The economy added 148,000 jobs, mostly in health care, construction and manufacturing.
Looking ahead, there continue to be a number of good signs for the travel sector in 2018. Travel frequency is set to rise this year, according to a survey by ground transportation provider The Go Group LLC, in which 33 percent of respondents said they would be traveling more for leisure this year versus last year. That’s up from just 21 percent of respondents who said the same thing in 2017.
The cruise sector, in particular, is continuing to show signs that it’s primed for growth. Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) projects that cruise travel will rise to 27.2 million passengers this year, up from 25.8 million last year and representing all income brackets – a third of the cruisers surveyed by CLIA have a household income less than $80K.