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Tourism Satellite Accounts: quarterly tourism labour statistics, Australia, experimental estimates

Experimental estimates of quarterly tourism employment and jobs to help explain the impacts of COVID-19 on tourism activity.

Reference period
March 2021
Released
18/06/2021

Key statistics

In March, there were 662,700 tourism jobs. This was:

  • 3,100 (0.5%) more jobs than December 2020
  • 35,500 (-5.1%) less jobs than March 2020
  • Almost 1 in 20 (4.7%) filled jobs in the economy 

Overview

Filled jobs

All references to "jobs" are referring to "filled jobs" unless otherwise specified. For information on the various measures of jobs (filled job, Labour Account main job and Labour Account secondary job), please refer to the Glossary in Methodology.

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Change in number and percentage of jobs by status, original series (a)
 Dec-19 to Mar-20Mar-20 to Jun-20Jun-20 to Sep-20Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-20 to Mar-21Mar-20 to Mar-21
Tourism-47000
(-6.3%)
-91700
(-13.1%)
24700
(4.1%)
28400
(4.5%)
3100
(0.5%)
-35500
(-5.1%)
Whole economy-118700
(-0.8%)
-862800
(-6.0%)
210100
(1.5%)
449300
(3.3%)
-7500
(-0.1%)
-210900
(-1.5%)

  (a) Change on preceding quarter, except for the last column which shows the change on corresponding quarter of the previous year

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Key COVID-19 dates

2020

  • January–March: Bushfires heavily impacted various regions across Australia. States of emergency were declared across New South Wales, Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory.
  • 20 March: Australia's international borders closed to all non-citizens and non-residents.
  • 21 March: Domestic travel restrictions began. Tasmania first state to require people entering to self-isolate for 14 days from arrival.
  • 22 March: Prime Minister announced Stage 2 lock down changes, which were progressively implemented.
  • 30 March: Prime Minister announced JobKeeper program.
  • First week of May: JobKeeper payment from ATO commenced.
  • Mid-May: Initial progressive easing of social distancing and trading restrictions commenced.
  • July-August: Progressive stage 3 and 4 restrictions commenced for different parts of Victoria.
  • July-September: State border restrictions frequently reviewed and progressively updated (tightened/relaxed).
  • 28 September: JobKeeper extension (with modified eligibility test) commenced.
  • October: Restrictions in Victoria progressively eased.
  • 16 October: Travellers from New Zealand allowed to fly into Australia as part of the one-way quarantine-free travel bubble agreement. 
  • November-December: Alternation between re-impositions and easing of restrictions for various local government areas affected by local outbreaks in South Australia and New South Wales, and closing and reopening of various State and Territory borders.

2021

  • January-March: Alternation between re-impositions and easing of restrictions for various local government areas affected by local outbreaks in New South Wales, Western Australia, Queensland and Victoria, and closing and reopening of various State and Territory borders. Continuation of the one-way quarantine-free travel bubble for travellers flying into Australia from New Zealand. Some temporary suspensions were put in place during the quarter due to localised COVID-19 outbreaks. 
  • 11 March: Prime Minister announced the $1.2 billion Tourism Aviation Network Support package.
  • 28 March: JobKeeper program ended.
     

Tourism industry

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Change in number and percentage of jobs by industry, original series (a)

 

Dec-19 to Mar-20Mar-20 to Jun-20Jun-20 to Sep-20Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-20 to Mar-21Mar-20 to Mar-21
Accommodation -12200
(-13.2%)
-15100
(-18.8%)
500
(0.8%)
2900
(4.4%)
-500
(-0.7%)
-12200
(-15.2%)
Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services -16400
(-7.0%)
-36800
(-17.0%)
20900
(11.6%)
6800
(3.4%)
6600
(3.2%)
-2500
(-1.2%)
Clubs, pubs, taverns and bars-4200
(-7.3%)
-5800
(-10.8%)
1300
(2.7%)
2400
(4.9%)
1400
(2.7%)
-700
(-1.3%)
Rail transport 100
(4.5%)
0
(0.0%)
-200
(-8.7%)
0
(0.0%)
-100
(-4.8%)
-300
(-13.0%)
Road transport and transport equipment rental200
(0.7%)
-2000
(-6.9%)
1300
(4.8%)
1900
(6.7%)
1100
(3.6%)
2300
(7.9%)
Air, water and other transport -3000
(-7.1%)
-7000
(-17.8%)
-6800
(-21.1%)
400
(1.6%)
4000
(15.4%)
-9400
(-23.9%)
Travel agency and information centre services-1400
(-3.8%)
-3900
(-11.1%)
2100
(6.8%)
2100
(6.3%)
200
(0.6%)
500
(1.4%)
Cultural services -1100
(-8.7%)
-2700
(-23.3%)
700
(7.9%)
0
(0.0%)
900
(9.4%)
-1100
(-9.5%)
Casinos and other gambling services -200
(-5.0%)
-300
(-7.9%)
-100
(-2.9%)
100
(2.9%)
-100
(-2.9%)
-400
(-10.5%)
Sports and recreation services-5300
(-17.6%)
-6400
(-25.8%)
3700
(20.1%)
4800
(21.7%)
-700
(-2.6%)
1400
(5.6%)
Retail trade -1900
(-1.6%)
-3700
(-3.2%)
2100
(1.9%)
5100
(4.4%)
-7200
(-6.0%)
-3700
(-3.2%)
Education and training -1700
(-2.7%)
-6900
(-11.4%)
-900
(-1.7%)
1300
(2.5%)
-2900
(-5.4%)
-9400
(-15.5%)
All other industries200
(0.8%)
-1300
(-5.2%)
200
(0.8%)
700
(2.9%)
200
(0.8%)
-200
(-0.8%)
Tourism total (b)-47000
(-6.3%)
-91700
(-13.1%)
24700
(4.1%)
28400
(4.5%)
3100
(0.5%)
-35500
(-5.1%)

(a) Change on preceding quarter, except for the last column which shows the change on corresponding quarter of the previous year
(b) Totals may not add due to rounding 

During this quarter, industries with the largest quarterly change in number of jobs were:

  • retail trade: -7,200 jobs (-6.0%)
  • cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services: 6,600 jobs (3.2%) 
  • air, water and other transport: 4,000 jobs (15.4%)

Comparing March 2020 with 2021, industries with the largest change in number of jobs were:

  • accommodation: -12,200 jobs (-15.2%) 
  • air, water and other transport: -9,400 jobs (-23.9%) 
  • education and training: -9,400 jobs (-15.5%) 
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Employment status

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Change in number and percentage of jobs by status, original series (a)
 Dec-19 to Mar-20Mar-20 to Jun-20Jun-20 to Sep-20Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-20 to Mar-21Mar-20 to Mar-21
Full-time-20600
(-5.4%)
-28800
(-8.0%)
-21000
(-6.3%)
11900
(3.8%)
14600
(4.5%)
-23300
(-6.5%)
Part-time-26400
(-7.3%)
-62900
(-18.6%)
45700
(16.7%)
16500
(5.2%)
-11500
(-3.4%)
-12200
(-3.6%)

  (a) Change on preceding quarter, except for the last column which shows the change on corresponding quarter of the previous year

During this quarter:

  • full-time jobs increased by 14,600 (4.5%) jobs while part-time jobs decreased by 11,500 (-3.4%)

Between March quarter 2020 and 2021:

  • there were 23,300 (-6.5%) less full-time jobs; this change is larger than part-time which has 12,200 (-3.6%) less jobs

Sex

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Change in number and percentage of jobs by sex, original series (a)
 Dec-19 to Mar-20Mar-20 to Jun-20Jun-20 to Sep-20Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-20 to Mar-21Mar-20 to Mar-21
Male-17600
(-5.2%)
-30100
(-9.4%)
6100
(2.1%)
16300
(5.5%)
5400
(1.7%)
-2300
(-0.7%)
Female-29300
(-7.2%)
-61600
(-16.2%)
18600
(5.9%)
12100
(3.6%)
-2300
(-0.7%)
-33200
(-8.8%)

 (a) Change on preceding quarter, except for the last column which shows the change on corresponding quarter of the previous year

During this quarter:

  • jobs worked by males increased by 5,400 (1.7%) jobs while jobs worked by females decreased by 2,300 (-0.7%) jobs

Between March quarter 2020 to 2021:

  • there were 2,300 (-0.7%) less jobs worked by males; this change was smaller than females who have lost 33,200 (-8.8%) jobs
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Sex by employment status

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Change in number and percentage of jobs by sex by employment status
 MaleFemale
 Dec-20 to Mar-21Mar-20 to Mar-21Dec-20 to Mar-21Mar-20 to Mar-21
Full-time9700
(6.2%)
-1500
(-0.9%)
4900
(3.0%)
-21700
(-11.3%)
Part-time-4300
(-2.8%)
-700
(-0.5%)
-7200
(-3.9%)
-11500
(-6.2%)

During this quarter:

  • full-time male jobs has the largest quarterly increase of 9,700 (6.2%) jobs
  • part-time female jobs has the largest quarterly decrease of 7,200 (-3.9%) jobs

From March quarter 2020 to 2021:

  • full-time female jobs has the largest yearly change of 21,700 (-11.3%) job losses
  • part-time male jobs has the smallest yearly change of 700 (-0.5%) job losses

Measuring the impacts of bushfires and COVID-19 on tourism activity

The bushfires followed immediately by the COVID-19 pandemic had an unprecedented impact on the Australian economy with tourism particularly affected. This section looks at how tourism has been impacted over the period by comparing estimates of tourism jobs at the end of December 2019 with those in the current quarter.

  • Tourism jobs peaked at 745,200 in December 2019, then fell to the lowest level (606,500) since June 2013 in June 2020, and increased to 662,700 this quarter.
  • This represents 11.1% (-82,500) less tourism jobs, compared to 2.3% (-329,600) less jobs in the whole economy as at the end of this quarter.
  • This represents a 40.5% recovery of total tourism jobs lost between the peak and the trough jobs estimate since these events. This is driven by an uneven mix of movements across tourism industries.
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Changes in this issue

There has been a small change made to Table 1 of the Filled jobs and Main jobs datacubes. More specifically, the corresponding economy-wide total job numbers published in the latest quarterly Labour Account are now included as an additional line of data. This has been introduced in response to users' need to monitor tourism jobs as a proportion of total economy-wide jobs. 

Related release

Australian National Accounts: Tourism Satellite Account (previously used cat. no. 5249.0)

The 2019-20 issue of Australian National Accounts: Tourism Satellite Account was released on 10 December 2020. Users are reminded that the estimates in this quarterly release are based on a different data source and are not directly comparable to the estimates provided in the annual tourism satellite account publication. For more information on the strengths and differences between the two employment measures, please refer to the article published in March quarter 2020.

Feedback

This new TSA publication contains experimental estimates of quarterly tourism labour statistics. The ABS welcomes comments and suggestions from users regarding this release. If you are interested in contributing, please contact the Customer Assistance Service via the ABS website Contact Us page. 

Data downloads

Data files

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 5249.0.55.005.