Careers in Tourism Services

NB: Listed below are an array of jobs available in the selected sector. We continue to add details to each job listed, including duties, required experience, suggested education, possible career paths and average annual salary.

Travel Writer/Photographer

OVERVIEW
Travel writers and photographers are specialists who often travel to far-away destinations to develop stories and photos for tourism-related journalism. They may be employed by newspapers, magazines, trade publications, the government or as freelance writers and photographers.

EXPERIENCE REQUIRED
Both a travel writer and photographer require creative ability as well as technical skills. For a writer, technical skills include computer literacy and the ability to use electronic mail. For a photographer, technical skills involve using a camera and other related equipment. In addition, both require physical stamina for travel and good communication skills. Experience in research, interviewing and writing travel stories is a desirable background for a writer to have. Experience in photography is valuable to a photographer.

DUTIES
Research subject, travel to and explore destinations, conduct interviews write and edit articles prior to editorial review (writer only), take photographs, identify/gain consent of subject (photographer only), develop and enhance photographs (photographer only), deliver work, often by electronic means.

RECOMMENDED EDUCATION
A journalism diploma/degree is preferred for writers, and a visual arts/photography diploma/degree is preferred for photographers.

POSSIBLE CAREER PATHS
Assistant Editor, Editor, Publisher or Communications Director (writer), Assistant Art Director, Art Director, Publisher (photographer).

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Tourism/Visitor Information Counsellor

OVERVIEW
Tourism/visitor information counsellors are an important link between the visitor and the service providers. They work at visitor information centres, government offices or at association offices, and provide answers to questions about the area, history, attractions and weather. Much of their time is spent talking to guests.

EXPERIENCE REQUIRED
Tourism/visitor information counsellors require excellent communication skills and good customer service skills. Knowledge of attractions, events and the local area is also required. Other useful abilities are research and recording skills, sales and cash handling skills, inventory and administrative skills, and time management. Knowledge of a second language can be helpful, especially when working in areas where travellers may not speak the local language.

DUTIES
Answer questions and provide information specific to region or site, distribute promotional materials, promote tourism products, encourage new and return visits, gather information and develop new resources, perform administrative tasks, may also stock and sell merchandise and handle cash transactions.

RECOMMENDED EDUCATION
Completion of secondary school is required. A college diploma or vocational training in tourism is preferred.

POSSIBLE CAREER PATHS
Tourism/Visitor Information Centre Supervisor, Regional General Manager.

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Visitor Information Centre Supervisor

OVERVIEW
Tourism/visitor information centre supervisors oversee the day-to-day operation of a tourism/visitor information centre, assisting visitors by providing information, as well as supervising staff and carrying out administrative functions. They often perform the same tasks as a tourism/visitor information counsellor, but must divide their time between those duties and the supervisory duties of planning, operations management and staff supervision.

EXPERIENCE REQUIRED
A supervisor of tourism/visitor information counsellors must have experience in that role, or in customer service. Extensive knowledge of local attractions, events and tourism services is necessary, as are excellent communication, administrative and time management skills. Supervisory or management experience is an asset.

DUTIES
Manage human resources, such as scheduling staff and conducting training, oversee information services, resolve problems and respond to feedback, perform administrative tasks, gather information and develop new resources, use business management skills.

RECOMMENDED EDUCATION
Post secondary training, such as a college diploma or degree in tourism or business, is usually required. However, experience attained as a Tourism/Visitor Information Counsellor can lead to placement in this position.

POSSIBLE CAREER PATHS
Information Centre Manager, Regional General Manager.

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Tourism Trainer

OVERVIEW
Tourism trainers use their expertise to increase the professionalism and skills of those working in the tourism industry. They work in training classrooms, worksites and in schools and have a good understanding of the tourism industry as well as a knowledge of adult learning principles and of training techniques. They may work as contract trainers, or may be employed by a company to manage ongoing training needs.

EXPERIENCE REQUIRED
A tourism trainer must possess industry experience, strong communication and public speaking skills, knowledge of adult learning principles and excellent interpersonal skills. Training or teaching experience is desirable.

DUTIES
Plan training objectives and session plans, deliver training sessions, respond to questions and comments, develop and administer evaluations, may develop program, curriculum or learning activities.

RECOMMENDED EDUCATION
A college or university diploma is required. A certificate in adult education is advantageous. Train-the-Trainer courses and public speaking courses are assets.

POSSIBLE CAREER PATHS
Curriculum/Program Developer, Training Manager.

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Tourism Researcher

OVERVIEW
Tourism researchers provide market research, analysis, planning and marketing strategies/services for tourism-related businesses. They collect, analyze and report findings back to clients and may need to conduct comparative research studies and/or develop social economic profiles. Researchers are employed by governments, by private consulting/research firms or by professional associations.

EXPERIENCE REQUIRED
A tourism researcher must have experience in market research or marketing, strong verbal and written communications skills, and excellent research, analytical and planning skills. In addition, computer literacy and an extended network of contacts are helpful.

DUTIES
Provide research, analysis and planning services, identify and recommend marketing opportunities, prepare marketing and development strategies, respond to enquires regarding reports, design, develop and implement projects, events, campaigns, etc.

RECOMMENDED EDUCATION
A bachelor degree in economics, commerce, business or public administration is required.

POSSIBLE CAREER PATHS
Manager, Executive or Owner/Operator in private industry; researcher in government agency.

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Executive Officer – Marketing

OVERVIEW
The Ministry’s marketing strategy is a complex advertising, promotional and sales strategy based on research findings, all designed to maximize the growth of tourism expenditures in the Bahamas, subject to that growth being distributed throughout the islands and throughout the year

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Marketing Manager

OVERVIEW
The Ministry’s marketing strategy is a complex advertising, promotional and sales strategy based on research findings, all designed to maximize the growth of tourism expenditures in the Bahamas, subject to that growth being distributed throughout the islands and throughout the year

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Retail Sales Clerk

OVERVIEW
Retail sales clerks sell or rent a variety of goods and services in stores and other retail businesses. They may work in independent stores, or in retail outlets that exist because of their affiliation with a business in another sector of tourism. Main tasks in this position revolve around customer service skills and cash handling, but other duties relate to displaying merchandise, handling returns and generally ensuring that the store is tidy and organized.

EXPERIENCE REQUIRED
Cash handling experience and good communication skills are required for this position, as are a professional attitude and appearance. Customer service experience, inventory management and display skills are useful, as is retail experience.

DUTIES
Greet customers and offer assistance, follow established cash-handling procedures, provide information on products and services, maintain records, handle customer comments, complaints and requests, prepare merchandise for display.

RECOMMENDED EDUCATION
A secondary school diploma is preferred.

POSSIBLE CAREER PATHS
Supervisor, Manager, Retail Chain Manager, Owner/Operator.

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Manager of Travel Trade Sales

OVERVIEW
A manager of travel trade sales is responsible for promoting a destination to travel agencies and tour companies. Government agencies, private consulting and research firms and professional associations all employ these managers. They may travel frequently, exploring new destinations and discovering travel attractions.

EXPERIENCE REQUIRED
Must have thorough knowledge of destination travel products, their potential and position in the marketplace. Must also have experience in government, business, tourism or travel trade; experience in marketing, promotion or business development; and research, analytical and planning skills. Sales abilities are required, as is management or supervisory experience. Strong verbal and written communications skills and proven financial management skills are also necessary. Desired experience includes development and management of campaigns or promotions. In addition, an extended network of contacts is beneficial.

DUTIES
Use administrative skills, use sales and marketing skills, use financial management skills, attend travel shows and organize familiarization tours.

RECOMMENDED EDUCATION
A university degree or college diploma in tourism, business, marketing, communications or public administration is usually required.

POSSIBLE CAREER PATHS
Executive, Owner/Operator.

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