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Silver-Haired and Shameless About Perks: Retirees Take Part-Time Work within the Travel Industry

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The couple just isn’t wealthy. They live in Upland, Calif., a city about 40 miles inland from Los Angeles, and admit that their latest reality — where they will head to an airport and casually wait for standby tickets to any city on the planet — continues to make them need to pinch themselves.

The glories of the U.S. national park system draw tons of of hundreds of thousands of holiday makers every year.

The travel industry is facing significant labor shortages. In June, domestic employment within the leisure and hospitality sectors was down nearly 8 percent since February 2020, in keeping with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, leaving hotels, airlines and other travel operators ill-equipped to contend with surging demand. That crunch — playing out in widespread flight cancellations, terminal halls stuffed with lost suitcases and diminished room service and every day housekeeping — is prompting firms to recruit at job fairs and sweeten their advantages with bonuses and same-day pay. It’s also pushing them to contemplate senior residents for positions which can be removed from senior.

“We’re open to anything,” said Dan Bienstock, chief people officer for EOS Hospitality, a hotel management company. “We’ve got more job openings across the corporate than ever before, and we’re pondering outside the box on learn how to retain talent.”

Greater than half of the 38 properties in EOS’s portfolio, which incorporates Red Jacket Resorts on Cape Cod in Massachusetts, and Cape Arundel Inn in Kennebunk, Maine, rely heavily on seasonal guests — and seasonal hiring. The corporate just isn’t actively targeting older staff for summer jobs, he said, but they’re focusing recruiting efforts on their hotels’ local communities to complement the summer work force long filled by international staff on H-2B visas.

“The labor pool for the hotel industry has been hit very hard, and these entry-level jobs have grow to be harder to fill for the reason that pandemic,” said Eric Rubino, chief development officer for Extreme Hospitality, an asset management company working with greater than 300 hotels. “For senior residents, who possibly don’t mind working so hard, they will say, ‘I don’t need the cash, but that travel profit means quite a bit.’”

Even those that don’t need the cash might now see the appeal of a little bit extra money, nevertheless. In keeping with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the variety of hospitality staff over the age of 65 has outpaced that sector’s population growth since 2012, rising to 590,000 from 418,000. The rise comes as inflation hits record highs, a phenomenon that hits retirees and people on a set income the toughest.

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