The 7 Types Of Tourism Jobs To Know If Your Career Goals Include ‘Discount Travel Perks’

Look, I love my job as much as the next gal but sometimes sitting at a desk for eight hours underneath fluorescent lights can… dull your spirit. 

On a recent trip to the Great Barrier Reef, however, I had an epiphany. Yes I have an email job but some people’s office is the literal ocean?? Folks get paid to scuba dive and teach people about marine life?? 

Don’t tell my boss, but I may have had a sudden hankering to leave the 9-5 life behind and embark on a new adventure. If this is also you, sipping on your office-made black coffee with blue light from your screens causing cellular degeneration, never fear. 

Here are a handful of jobs in the tourism industry to pursue if you’re craving some of that work-holiday balance. 

Flight attendant 

My former hairdresser dated a flight attendant and let me tell you, the envy over the price of flights not just for her but for my hairdresser too? Unmatched. We’re talking flying to sunny Queensland regions for less than the price of brunch in Melbourne (IYKYK).

If you spend more time in the airport than you do in your living room, then a career as a flight attendant may be the one for you. From cheap (to free!) flights for you and your family, to discounts on hotels and car rentals once you get to your destination, being a flight attendant is the perfect job for people who want to see more of the world than just their office cubicle. 

Tour guide 

Do you love yapping? Fascinated by the way the world works? Want to share your passion on a subject with a captive audience? (No, literally, they’ve paid you to be there), then becoming a tour guide may be for you.

From the outback to the Whitsundays, the tourism industry needs tour guides wherever people, well, tour. Truly, there hasn’t been a tour I’ve been on where I haven’t walked away feeling more fulfilled, brimming with knowledge and wondering how to get paid to chat with people all day.

The Queensland Tourism Careers website is a great place to start if you’re also wondering how to get paid to swim with turtles on the Great Barrier Reef (and help people, of course). 

All you need is good interpersonal skills, to be an organised human, and stay calm under pressure. Easy breezy. 

Events 

Working in events is more of a career than a job (a lot of roles may require a degree in events management) but being an events organiser may mean you get to pick up and travel to where the gig is. 

Whether you’re a wedding planner, or work behind the scenes on festivals or markets, you’ll receive flexible working hours, get to meet awesome people, and see the country all at the same time!

Housekeeping

Does #CleanTok have you obsessing over sponges and sprays? Perhaps a career in housekeeping is for you? What could be more satisfying than getting a space spick and span, ready for the next guest to have the time of their lives? 

When you’re not fluffing pillows or wiping surfaces, you’ll be able to tour the location you live in and possibly also have flexible working hours. Getting to lounge by the ocean after a few hours cleaning rooms? Sounds like a smooth brain activity to me. 

If you love it, you may work your way up to organising larger (and more luxurious) properties, or manage a team of your own.

Chefs

Turn your Overcooked obsession into a reality by cheffing around the country. Venues will always need chefs, meaning you have some job security, and you’ll get to meet interesting people while enjoying flexible working hours and touring around your chosen location. 

You need to (obviously) be able to handle a grill but also be a whiz at time management, pay attention to detail and stay calm under the pressure that is a commercial kitchen. Yes, Chef.

Bar attendants 

If you have skills slinging drinks behind a bar, then the world is your oyster, baby. Seriously, if you’re a whizz on the cocktail maker then you can nab a job pretty much wherever you want. 

As long as there’s a vacancy sign and you have a good attitude, you can enjoy working evenings and use the daytime hours to explore the city, coast, or outback you find yourself in. 

Wait staff

Finally, working as a server is one of the many ways you’re able to meet new and exciting people, have flexible working hours (I low-key miss those 6am to 1pm shifts), and take days off to explore without needing to log your annual leave. You’ll need good interpersonal skills, the ability to multitask well, and a passion for food, drinks and people. Once you’ve got those nailed, you’re laughing. 

Feeling inspired by some of the tourism jobs you can tap into? There’s even more to discover, here.

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