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Highest Paid Jobs in Tourism

Are you super friendly and outgoing? Do you have a penchant for travel? Like helping people? If you answered yes to all 3 you should definitely consider a job in the tourism industry! Think of it like this – in the tourism industry, your job is to make people happy. Sounds pretty cool, right? Imagine all those people out there desperately drudging through their chaotic or miserably boring 9-5 existence.

Do you know that a lot of them are working and living for their next holiday? Some people work and save for years so they can take an amazing week or two off to a dream location. Most people have been planning their ideal trips for months, and some for years! For some people, it what gets them out of bed in the morning – this desire they have to go someplace different and either relax or adventure the hell out of life.

Maybe they’re looking forward to finally having some quality time with the people they love. Maybe they’ve had some kind of personal crisis and this trip away is like pressing a reset for them. Whatever their reason for travelling, the fact is, when you work in tourism, you get to directly impact on people’s dreams and quality of life. That’s pretty cool for an industry where you rarely need a uni degree to get started.

This post is for you if you thrive in jobs that allow you to make other people happy, but you also know their worth, and you’re not ready to settle for minimum wage. Sure, the tourism industry probably contains the greatest amount of entry level and minimum wage paying jobs out there…but therein lies the gold. You don’t need any qualifications to get a start in tourism. And then, if you’re good enough at what you do, you can work your way up. Let’s take a look at where you can end up. A place where you get to combine real passion for your job with a beautiful looking bank balance.

1. Casino General Manager – average salary $140,000

In this prestigious role you can expect to manage all aspects of a casino property. This includes operations, customer service and staffing. This is really the “top dog” role of the tourism industry, so this is one of the only jobs you probably will need a degree for. Plus LOTS of experience – think 10 years plus. It’s a pretty cool job title though, right?

2. Head Chef – average salary $77,000

If cooking is life then this could be a good job to aim for. You’ll be responsible for planning and directing ALL food prep and cooking activities and creating new menu items (fun)! Plus you’ll train new staff. You will be the Chief of the kitchen! You’ll need amazing organisational and leadership skills, and you’re allowed to swear at people and get really angry. But it’s not a requirement.

3. Hotel Manager – average salary – $62,000

It’s worth noting that this average is taken from ALL kinds of properties, everything from small, boutique hotels to huge, 5 star resorts. Obviously, if you manage the resort your pay will be a lot higher than at the boutique hotel. You’ll be responsible for managing all aspects of your property including operations, staffing and customer service. Now, there are two ways to get here. You can get a degree and then work your way up, OR you can start in an entry level role (even in concierge or housekeeping), and work your way up. Obviously, for the latter option, you will need to be damn good at your job – every single job you do on your way to the top. But it’s totally possible.

4. Event Manager – average salary $62,000

If you have ridiculously good interpersonal and organisation skills this could be the role for you. Event Managers are responsible for managing conferences, seminars, exhibitions, or even parties and promotional events. You will coordinate EVERYTHING – from accommodation, entertainment and transport to budgeting and contract negotiation. Not a job for the faint-hearted. But definitely fun.

5. Head of Housekeeping – average salary $60,000

Few jobs are as attainable by doing solid work alone as this one. Hotels and resorts will often take people with no experience for entry-level housekeeping jobs. From there you can learn the ropes and progress to a supervisor position. At this point you know all the ins and outs of the property and should be learning the required leadership and organisational skills. If you’re good enough at what you do it’s likely that when the time rolls around you’ll be considered for the top job in the department.

6. Food and Beverage Manager – average salary $60,000

Here’s another role that is possible to work up to from an entry level job. Reporting to the General Manager, the F&B Manager is responsible for the overall operation of any cafes, restaurants or bars on the site of a property. This includes managing operations, staffing, and customer service. They may also liaise closely with the events coordinator if the property hosts any kind of functions. It’s possible to start off as a waiter or bartender, consistently demonstrate your worth as a great employee, become an expert on the property, maybe undertake some extra training and then go for this role.

The takeaway? Jobs in tourism are usually exciting, social, flexible, chaotic and sometimes stressful. If you love the industry then it’s definitely possible to work your way up to one of the top jobs, just remember to keep having fun and enjoy creating great experiences for your guests and clients while you’re doing it!