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Travel & Tourism

The travel and tourism sector

The travel and tourism sector is the UK’s third largest employer, accounting for 9.5 per cent of total employment. Tourism is one of the fastest growing sectors in the UK in employment terms, employing nearly 3 million people, and the value of tourism to the UK economy is approximately £121 billion (7.1 per cent) of UK GDP. In 2016, travel and tourism contributed 10.2 per cent of the world GDP, and the sector now supports 292 million people in employment – that’s one in ten jobs worldwide.

What does the qualification cover?

This qualification, which is 120 Guided Learning Hours, is the same size and level as a GCSE. It is ideal for you if you are a pre-16 student working at level 1 or level 2 and would like to find out more about the importance of travel and tourism to the UK and world economies, and to build the skills and knowledge to progress to further learning. The qualification provides an engaging and stimulating introduction to the world of travel and tourism.

This qualification includes both UK and international tourism, and allows you to explore current issues affecting global travel and tourism organisations and destinations. It also includes topics such as destination management and relationships between organisations, as well as social and ethical responsibilities/sustainability.

You will explore some of the key areas within the sector, including: the contribution of travel and tourism to the UK economy; tourism development; trends in travel and tourism; how organisations meet customer needs; the location and appeal of different types of travel and tourism destinations; and the impact of travel and tourism on the local community, environment and economy. You will also prepare a holiday plan to meet customer needs, understand the different factors that influence global travel and tourism, and learn how travel and tourism organisations and destinations respond to these factors.

How will I be assessed?

The qualification consists of three components that will give you the opportunity to develop broad knowledge and understanding of the travel and tourism sector. Components 1 and 3 are Purpose statement – 603/3038/7 – Pearson BTEC Level 1/Level 2 Tech Award in Travel and Tourism – Version 2 assessed by your school through tasks or assignments. Your teacher will mark these, and so you will receive feedback as to how you are getting on.

The assessment for Component 2 covers the different factors that influence global travel and tourism and is sent away to be marked.

Component 3 builds directly on Components 1 and 2, and brings your learning together, using the knowledge, skills and techniques you have developed about travel and tourism organisations, features of destinations, types of visitors, travel, holidays and accommodation, factors influencing travel and tourism, how organisations respond to these factors, and managing tourism through sustainability and destination management, in a specific context. All of the work that you do throughout the course, including the tasks or assignments, will prepare you for this final task.

Where will this take me?

Once you have completed the qualification, you will have developed valuable knowledge, practical skills and a wider understanding of the travel and tourism industries. The skills and knowledge you gain will provide a sound basis for progression to further study of this sector. At level 3, this could be to A levels, BTEC Nationals (such as a BTEC National in Travel and Tourism or in Business) or a mixture of both. Alternatively, it could be to a BTEC Level 2 Technical Certificate, or an apprenticeship. The best option for you will depend on the grades you achieve in this and in other qualifications you have taken, what you enjoy doing and any advice you can access about the further learning and training opportunities available in your area.

What other subjects go well with travel and tourism?

This qualification is designed to be taken as part of a broad and balanced curriculum at Key Stage 4. It will sit well alongside GCSEs in EBacc subjects including languages, maths and geography; non-core GCSEs, for example, Business; and/or other Technical Awards, e.g. a BTEC Level 1/Level 2 Tech Award in Enterprise, to provide both curriculum breadth and the skills needed to make informed choices about study post-16. It complements GCSE Geography in particular, putting into context some of the knowledge and skills developed in the study of that subject.

Where can I find out more?

Further information about this qualification can also be accessed at:


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Louth Academy

Philip C Dickinson
BA (Hons) MA PGCE.