For travel-lovers looking for a rewarding career, few industries seem as promising as tourism. What could be more wonderful than working in an exciting, exotic locale, helping others get as much satisfaction from their travels as you do?

Studying tourism is the first step towards achieving this. Whether you want to get a full degree or simply get a certification to add to your current credentials, going overseas for your studies guarantees an unforgettable experience.

As a foreign student, you’ll have an invaluable advantage in this field. As you progress from newcomer to adopted local, you will experience first-hand all aspects of the tourism industry in your destination of choice. After all, who understands tourism better than someone who has been a tourist themselves?

Studying tourism can mean a variety of things. On one hand, there are general courses designed to cover a range of basic principles across customer service, management, and operations. These are usually at the undergraduate level, and are designed to give students an overall view of the industry.

If you already have an undergraduate degree, you can take a Master’s or a Ph.D. in a specific field. This allows you to deepen your knowledge and focus your efforts.

These courses often involve a frontline placement, allowing you to get some experience in your chosen area. For this reason, your destination is particularly important when considering this type of course.

Several tourism and hospitality schools around the world also offer shorter programs and courses. These mostly take place in the summer and can be a good option for someone who is in more of a hurry to gain a specific skillset.

Nowadays, few corners of the world can be said to be fully devoid of tourists. As a result, tourism courses can be found essentially anywhere.

China

Sure, Chinese tourists are dominating global travel, but China’s own tourism industry has also boomed. Both domestic and international tourism is on the rise, with millions of people being drawn to the country’s rich heritage, spectacular nature, and world-renown cuisine.

As a result, tourism study programs abound throughout the country. Several of China’s best universities offer tourism degrees and short summer programs, including several options in English.

South Africa

While many countries in Africa have only a modest tourist industry, this is very much not the case for South Africa. The country combines some of the most beautiful nature in the world with vibrant cities and unique tribal cultures, meaning there is a wide breadth of subjects to study.

South Africa also happens to be home to many of the top universities in Africa, with English-speaking programs concentrated in Cape Town, Pretoria, and Johannesburg.

Spain

Spain is a country that knows tourism. From historical towns to diverse modern cities, traditional taverns to revolutionary high-end gastronomy, beach party towns to mountain adventure camps, there really is a specialism for everyone.

This makes Spain the perfect choice for people who are not sure what area of tourism they want to get into, since there are opportunities to try out everything.

Preparing to study tourism overseas is not too different from preparing to be a tourist overseas. You will need to select a destination based on your interests and budget, plan your accommodation, and pack your bags appropriately. There’s just the small matter of selecting a course.

How to Choose a Tourism Study Abroad Program

Go somewhere that you love traveling in, as enjoying the area as a tourist will help you understand the local industry on a much deeper level. Luckily, most tourism courses are based in large travel hubs, so you shouldn’t have a hard time exploring the country.

Another way to approach this is to match your destination to your specific area of interest. For example, Switzerland is internationally known for its high-end hospitality institutions, but you’d be much better off heading to Costa Rica or New Zealand if you are interested in sustainable eco-tourism.

If you don’t know what area of tourism you want to work in, go for a general tourism management course at a good university. This will give you an overall view of the possible career paths in the industry, after which you can specialize through a Master’s degree or a shorter course.

Health & Safety

A tourism course can involve a huge range of activities, some of which are potentially dangerous. This is especially true if you are interested in adventure tourism. Make sure your health insurance covers anything you get up to during your studies.

Aside from this, you are likely to be staying in a big city, so the usual precautions apply. Be aware of pickpockets, avoid walking alone at night, don’t flash expensive stuff, don’t drink too much, and generally keep your wits about you.

Other Need To Know

Tourism and hospitality are often conflated, but they are not the same thing. Hospitality involves the service part of tourism, including restaurants, hotels, and cruises. Tourism includes this, but also everything else, from transport to travel agencies, museums, landmarks, and tourism boards.

If you know that hospitality is what you are interested in, you are better off narrowing down your search to this area. If, however, you just know that you want to work in the general world of tourism, it’s useful to keep this broader definition in mind.

Tourism Study Abroad Programs

Displaying 121 - 135 of 319 programs
Global Leadership Program - Leadership exCHANGE
4-Week New Venture Planning & Internship: Raleigh, NC
United States of America
1 review

See what it’s like from the “Start.” Startups, that is! INTERNSHIP: Be...

Academic Studies Abroad
Study & Volunteer Abroad in Cusco or Lima, Peru!
Peru
1 review

ASA's program in Cuzco is near the Andes mountains, Cuzco is the...

EU Business School
Study Abroad in Barcelona, Geneva, Montreux or Munich
Multiple Countries

The EU Barcelona bachelor’s programs are seven-semester, three-year...

KEI Abroad
KEI Abroad in Bangkok, Thailand
Thailand
1 review

Bangkok has you! Come study abroad with KEI at Mahidol University...

BestSemester
Australia Studies Centre
Australia
1 review

At the Australia Studies Centre (ASC), you'll experience life in the...

University of West London
University of West London Study Abroad Program
England
1 review

The University of West London (UWL) invites students to attend for one...

UCFB
UCFB Study Abroad Semester Programmes
England
1 review

At UCFB you will be immersed in the life of our institution, the...

New European College
Master of Business Administration (MBA)
Germany
1 review

The MBA program suits the needs of professionals looking to expand...

Upskill
Bali: Marine Conservation Semester & Summer Courses
Indonesia
1 review

The Udayana University and Upskill study programs in Bali are now...

Learn International
Semesters in the United Kingdom with Learn International
England

Did you know that the United Kingdom is one of the most popular study...

Learn International
Semester Abroad in New Zealand with Learn International
New Zealand

Combine academia and adventure in one of the world’s most scenic...

West Virginia University
New Zealand Adventure
New Zealand

The mountains, forests, and coast of NZ are perfect for facilitating a...

The Hacker Exchange
Global Innovation Program: Melbourne, Australia
Australia

Melbourne, Australia, held the title of ‘World’s Most Liveable City’...

The Hacker Exchange
Global Innovation Program: Singapore
Singapore

With amazing innovative policies, a flexible working culture, and easy...

What People Are Saying

Some of my friends and I on a CAPA trip to Galway, Ireland

I studied in Dublin in the fall of 2019. I was the only student from my college, and I was completely terrified. I had never traveled further than outside the New England area, much less out of the...

Me

An experience of a lifetime! CAPA supported me from the moment I applied to the moment I arrived in Ireland. CAPA made me feel safe and kept me engaged and informed while I was in Dublin. Anyone who...

Group Pic

Its was an incredible journey with HEX, I would never imagine to learn so many things be it profession or for personal development, making new friends for life, meeting great bunch of people from...

Related Study Abroad Articles