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Published in the 1-15 December 2004 print edition of MG; send me the print edition

Education & careers

Careers in Management - ii

Tourism & Travel Management

Every year over 75,000 Indian Muslims perform their Fifth Fardh of Hajj. The Taj Mahal, Red Fort and hundreds of historical and heritage spots are visited by thousands of Indian and Foreign tourists every day. Be it a trade fair or a business convention or a political party bash or any other major event of state and national importance it has always attracted thousands of visitors.

Why? A simple reason. " People want to travel, they just want to travel." We have lakhs of tourists who travel for many reasons. Some travel to fulfill their religious obligations(like Hajj, pilgrimage, Umrah, etc.), many more travel to have a good holiday outing. The business community travels to improve its business. A political party does a yatra (India shining or rath yatra …) to garner support and gain votes. In general every person wants to travel and has a reason for it. 

This has given employment to lakhs of people who manage various issues of lakhs of tourists. Managing them, catering to their needs and demands and ultimately making their trip a memorable one is all that tourism and travel administration/management about. Today tourism has given unflinching support to Transport, Hotels, aviation, shipping and communication sectors. With massive plans undertaken by the Government, there is great prospect for people who wish to plunge into the waters of tourism by taking up a professional course in tourism and travel.
Let’s now have a quick look about a career in tourism and travel.

Why take up a career in Tourism?

  1. Tourism offers direct employment to over 40 lakh people and supports many more indirectly.

  2. There is huge requirement to maintain International standards and have professional personnel. 

  3. Travel and Tourism Industry is the largest foreign exchange earner among all our industries.

  4. The growth of tourism in the past decade have made it the key factor in the economy for states like Kerala, Goa, Rajasthan, Uttarpradesh and of course to some extent even Jammu and Kashmir. 

  5. India’s current share in World tourism is expected to increase 3 folds in the next 5 years.

Government support

  1. The central and state governments have various incentives and programs to encourage private operators.

  2. Indian Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC) and State Tourism Development Corporations play a key role in disseminating tourist information and handling tourist operations at National and state level. 

  3. They publicize the sightseeing spots, provide detailed information regarding tourism in the country, arrange tours, provide accommodation, etc..

  4. Avoid exploitation of common man by having a check on the illegal operations of the private sector.

The role of Private Sector 

Big money !!. This remains their core objective. Increasing flow of tourists is giving them a cake walk in the business. The private agencies offer a variety of services starting from the planning of economically viable tours, coordination of transport facilities, reservations of accommodation and travel, sorting out exchange problems and in general, assisting tourists to have an eventful, enjoyable and comfortable stay.

This makes people more comfortable with private agencies than governmental services. 

The areas of boom in Tourism 

  1. Business tourism (Offshore assignments, trade fairs, conventions etc.)

  2. Pilgrimage tourism. (Hajj, Umrah, Yatras, Yashnav Devi etc…)

  3. Culture tourism. (State tours, heritage packages, etc…)

  4. Holiday tourism. (Holiday visits, Resorts, Hillstations,..)

  5. Adventure tourism (Trekking and mountaineering, rock climbing, etc..)

  6. Wildlife tourism (visiting sanctuaries, zoo’s, National parks, jungles.) 

  7. …and many more areas being explored every day.

Courses on offer 

  • Masters in Tourism Administration

  • Post Graduate Diploma in Tourism and Travel.

  • Diploma in Tourism Management 

  • Diploma in International Airlines and Travel Management (IATA) 

  • Basic course in Travel Management. 
    (6 months)

Primary requirement: Fluency in English, at least one foreign language and also two or three regional languages.

At undergraduate level: 10+2.

At post graduate level: Graduation in any discipline.

The beginning of the Journey

  1. Entry into this industry is mainly through a travel agency or a tour operating company.

  2. A three or four month diploma (after 10+2) is all that is required to jump into the waters of tourism. 

  3. Initially one may start as a front office manager / tourist guide and gain entry in the industry.

  4. The progress on the ladder depends on the professional standards you reach.
    5. If one can pass the IATA examination, he/she is qualified to work in the tourism industry in any part of the world and has lucrative jobs ahead.

Nature of work 

  1. Basic operations: Handling ticket counters, tourist queries, dealing with travel issues etc..

  2. Fact finding: Updating the information about the tourist locations and the current trends.

  3. Effective Management: Making arrangements for accommodation of tourists and handle travel papers.

  4. Handling clients: Foreigners who visit India and Indians who visit foreign. 

  5. Risk tasks: Booking of flights, confirmation and issues of tickets. Handle with care. !!

  6. Marketing: Advertising and promoting agency services to potential tourist clients. 

Personality requirements

  1. Good communication and interpersonal skills.

  2. A burning desire to learn about various cultures and languages, which decides your rung on the ladder of success.

  3. A pleasing personality with good memory to remember names, places, events & dates. 

  4. Ability to organize small and big operations with smartness, ability to handle people of various cultures.

  5. Hardwork. It pays. Long hours of work is most essential.

Job Prospects 

On completing a course in travel and tourism, one can find opportunities in:

  1. Governmental agencies like ITDC and several State Tourism departments.

  2. International and National Tour operations. (Hajj, Holiday Tours, etc.)

  3. Domestic and international airlines, hotels, transport and cargo companies.

  4. Travel consultants — catering to bookings, reservations and arrangements for tourists.

  5. Private Enterprise — to set up one’s own travel agency.

  6. Experienced personnel can always look for big positions abroad.
    Most of the highly reputed travel agencies prefer trained personnel. So the salary and other incentives depend upon how well you are trained and your personal ability to meet their demands.

Universities offering courses in Travel & Tourism 

Master of Tourism Administration 

  1. Bangalore University.

  2. Aligarh Muslim University.

  3. Kurukshetra University.

  4. Karnataka University.

  5. Marthwada University. Etc..

Diploma Courses

  1. Indian Institute of Travel and Tourism Management, New Delhi.

  2. Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management, Gwalior.

  3. Annamalai University, Chennai.

  4. Kota Open University, Rajasthan.

  5. University of Kerala, Trivandrum.

  6. Pondicherry University, Pondicherry., etc….

Other special courses 

  1. Graduate Integrated course in Toursim, College of vocational studies, Delhi University, New Delhi.

  2. Basic Course in Travel Management, The Ministry of Tourism, New Delhi.

  3. Diploma in I.A.T.A , Trade wings, Mumbai and New Delhi.
    Correspondence courses are also conducted by several universities. 


Any queries? If you have any queries, kindly mail us. We will put the best solutions for your career queries. 

Ameen-e Mudassar, Career Counsellor
MSW-Career Guidance & Information Center, 
# 157/A, 4th ‘C’ Cross, Behind Naseem PolyClinic, Ilyasnagar, J.P. Nagar Post, 
Bangalore – 560078 


» Careers in Management - i

» Careers in Management - iii

» Careers in Management - iv

» Careers in Management - v

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