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UNWTO Report: Woman Power in tourism

Around the world, more women work in tourism than men. Income disparities between the sexes are also lower than in other industries. These are the preliminary findings of the latest Global Report on Women in Tourism, which was presented at ITB Berlin 2019. Tourism also offers women comparatively better chances of reaching executive positions and successfully becoming self-employed. This does, however, vary greatly depending on the country.

In many regions around the world, fewer than 20 per cent of women have a job at all. Additional support must and should be implemented here first, emphasised representatives of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the World Bank, the German Corporation for International Cooperation (GIZ), and Amadeus. At the presentation it was reported that Morocco, for example, has 3,885 tour guides – yet only four per cent of them are women.

In general, tourism offers women relatively good job opportunities, said Dr Lucy Ferguson, the lead expert on the report. “But there is still a lot to be done here.” The new report, the second of its kind, draws on Eurostat data from the European Commission, Ilostat information from the International Labour Organization, and additional research.

According to Ilostat, approximately 61 per cent of tourism employees worldwide are women. In Europe, the percentage of women in the various tourism branches analysed averaged 58.5 per cent. The accommodation industry accounts for 60.2 per cent and travel agencies and tour operators even for 63.9 per cent.

Additional findings: in Europe, women in tourism work part-time more often than in other industries. “Working conditions in the hotel and accommodation industry are improving,” according to the study.

This is the result of partnerships and negotiations between unions and international hotel chains. Progress is also being made in the common fight against sexual harassment.

Bernd Kubisch

Press contact: Marcelo Risi


Tel.: +34 692 00 69 54

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