The hospitality and tourism industry in greater New Orleans is a major driver of the region’s economy, employing more than 72,000 people, or 12 percent of all workers. Strong employment growth is projected for the next decade. While conventional wisdom about career opportunities in the industry focuses on the majority of employees in entry-level, low-skill positions, this publication takes a closer look at the full range of jobs available, the types of skills required, and the prospects for economic advancement both within and outside hospitality and tourism.

This report is a labor market snapshot of the hospitality and tourism industry in New Orleans that moves beyond the conventional wisdom. Jobs for the Future’s analysis uses an approach that aligns with unique features of the hospitality and tourism industry in order to better understand its potential economic opportunities.