Beware of stereotypes: what you can do with a degree in tourism

Wild rumours and stereotypes circulate about many professions and degree programmes. Our insider from the degree programme dispels the clichés once and for all.

Stereotype 1: Anyone can be a host. If you are not good at anything else, you can always go into hospitality.

Anyone working in the hospitality industry always deals with cheerful people, can sleep in late, and is surrounded by delicious food, music and alcohol. It is easy to serve up a few plates and drinks and you can even snack and treat yourself to the occasional sip of wine. Who needs a degree for that? Tap beer, serve food and be a bit hospitable. Anyone can work in the food service industry!

If it were all so easy, we certainly would not have so many popular television shows like “Die Kochprofis”, “Rosins Restaurants” or “Rach, the Restaurant Tester”.  Well thought out concepts for making business decisions, managing personnel, managing purchases, and above all, for ensuring good customer service are in the works behind the friendly relaxed atmosphere of a restaurant.

So, next time we are out eating in a restaurant let us make a toast to all the hosts who make it possible to have such an enjoyable evening.

Stereotype 2: Those who study tourism just want to travel around the world the whole time.

First day of orientation week, first semester, a round of introductions. Question: Who are you and why did you decide to study tourism? And guess what, 90% answer this question by saying they enjoy travelling and exploring the world.  But where is the problem? What is better than turning your passion into a profession? Admit it: you are just jealous!

Whether we really end up jet setting around the world after graduation is still open, but at least we have a thousand opportunities to work abroad. And that’s pretty good.

Stereotype 3: Getting off work on time? Not in the hotel business.

Everyone who works in the hotel business knows the situation. After work you want to go out and party, you are invited to a birthday party or your friend is waiting at home and your shift is supposed to end at 11 pm. Then, punctually at one minute before 11 pm, new guests arrive to check in. Yahoo! What fun! However, what’s the big deal, it just part of the package. Besides, we are used to it. Yes, those in the hotel business also have to work on weekends. However, in exchange, we have two days off during the week and we can go shopping in peace and quiet without having to push through crowds. Two weekdays when everyone has to work, we get to sleep in late and enjoy free time while others sit in crowded trains or in traffic jams. That is not to be under rated, believe me!

Stereotype 4: You study tourism? That is for working in a travel agency, right?

I also thought so. However, that is total nonsense! Instead of getting stuck behind a PC and picking out the cheapest all-inclusive package deals for Mallorca, you can just as well work in a hotel or in the event sector, or even develop, plan and carry out travel tours. You can work in a marketing consortium, as a consultant or even start up your own business or, or, or…there are many options. During your degree programme, you get the basics and can pick an area of specialisation. And then you can finally jet set around the world again: this also all works wonderfully overseas!

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