Hotel jobs rose by a fifth in just one week following the announcement that double-vaccinated US and EU visitors can come to the UK without quarantine, according to new data from Indeed Flex, the online marketplace for flexible workers.
In July, the Government announced it would waive quarantine requirements for fully vaccinated tourists from Europe and USA from 2nd August. The announcement delivered a major shot in the arm to the tourism industry, which has been one of those hardest hit by pandemic-related restrictions and isolation requirements.
The decision had an immediate impact on vacancies at hotel operators, with job postings rising by 21% between August 1-7, compared to the previous week, as hotels geared up for increased numbers of visitors.
It is one of the clearest signs yet that UK tourism is on the road to recovery, and comes after Heathrow Airport saw a surge in inbound passengers in July. The number of travellers flying into London’s biggest airport from North America was up 230% compared to July 2020, while EU passenger numbers rose by 32%2.
The most common hotel job postings on the Indeed Flex platform are for kitchen porters, chefs and bar staff.
The news that hotels are gearing up for a surge in guest numbers is good news for visitor attractions and the wider hospitality industry. Visit Britain reported that spending by foreign visitors was down 94% in the first quarter of 2021, compared to the same three months during the pre-pandemic start of 20203.
Jack Beaman, CEO and Co-founder of Indeed Flex, said: “While much of the economy has bounced back strongly since lockdown, tourism has been painfully slow out of the blocks while quarantine restrictions deterred many would-be visitors from travelling to the UK.
“The waiving of those requirements for fully vaccinated visitors from the US and EU has already started to make a difference for hotel operators, who are frantically hiring as demand for rooms starts to pick up.
“Hoteliers, and the other employers who rely on tourists from overseas, will be hoping that this marks the start of a wave of demand from foreign visitors and the tourism industry’s rapid recovery.
“Reliable workers are central to the recovery of this people-centric service sector. It’s striking that many hotel operators are opting to build their growth on a flexible staffing strategy, as this enables them to easily dial their team’s hours up or down, depending on demand.
“With the change in the labour market, we are also seeing hoteliers willing to increase the pay rate and benefits, which is necessarily to attract talent back to the job market.”