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Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs

Jobs and skills in tourism

Photographs of people working in a hotel, restaurant and cafe, as an air hostess and a ski instructor. The logos for "European Commission" and "European Year of Skills" appear.


Your one-stop-hub for jobs and upskilling in the tourism sector

Staff shortages are a pressing issue across sectors, and the tourism industry is also affected. A striking 92% of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in tourism encounter challenges in hiring skilled staff, predominantly due to a shortage of applicants. Despite this, only a quarter of these SMEs have explored hiring talent from other EU countries

The EU therefore supports tourism by linking jobseekers with employers across Europe, investing in reskilling and upskilling, and supporting the sector’s shift towards jobs that require green and digital skills and other new competences. Funding programmes further support businesses, training providers and authorities, ensuring a resilient and competitive tourism workforce. 

In 2024, the European Commission will offer a digital platform for all tourism stakeholders to meet and exchange on actions contributing to the transition pathway for EU tourism. Watch this space! 

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Ensuring fair working conditions and equal opportunities 

Workers in the EU are entitled to fundamental rights, including those related to health and safety in the workplace, along with equal opportunities for all genders and protection against discrimination. Additionally, labour laws cover important aspects for tourism workers like

It is the responsibility of EU countries to ensure that their national legislation upholds these standards set forth by EU Directives

The EU has also introduced the European Pillar of Social Rights, outlining key principles and rights for fair and well-functioning labour markets. In May 2021, Member States collectively agreed to the 2030 headline targets set in the European Pillar of Social Rights Action Plan. This commitment includes two crucial targets related to employment: at least 78% of people aged 20 to 64 should be employed, and at least 60% of all adults should participate in training every year. 

Discover what the EU can do for you 

Whether you’re an employee, a student seeking opportunities, business owner, training provider or policymaker, your role is crucial in shaping the future of European tourism. Download this brochure on your rights.

Explore what the EU can do for you by clicking the tile that best represents your involvement in the sector.