10% Of Working Icelanders Employed In Tourism Industry - The Reykjavik Grapevine

10% Of Working Icelanders Employed In Tourism Industry

Published May 26, 2016

Photos by
Art Bicnick

Iceland’s tourism industry has become a major source of employment in Iceland, and demand for labour will continue to grow.

Kjarninn reports that according to new data from the Tourism Task Force, about 22,000 people work in Iceland’s tourism industry, comprising 10% of all working Icelanders. Of these, 6,000 tourism industry workers in Iceland are foreigners.

It is predicted that some 40% of Iceland’s tourism industry workers will come from abroad, both this year and the next.

Working in the tourism industry covers many trades. 26.2% of tourism industry workers are employed in sanitation and cleaning; 12% work as tour guides; and just over 8% work in reception, sales, and skilled food service. Tourism industry employers say they have the most difficulty hiring people for cleaning and skilled food service.

Due to the limited size of Iceland’s population paired with the rapid expansion of the tourism industry, many in the field have emphasised that more foreign workers will be needed to fill these positions.

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