Whether you want to be a chef, restaurant manager, accommodation manager, or simply an entertainer, holiday centres provide prosperous career opportunities.
They are generally large, purpose- built sites consisting of accommodation units (lodges, chalets and apartments) and a wide range of facilities and activities. Most have on-site restaurants, bars, sports facilities and evening entertainment. Well-known holiday centre groups include Center Parcs and Butlins.
If you enjoy meeting new people, and are able to communicate with customers of all ages and backgrounds, your skills will be very valuable here. A variety of visitors, ranging from families and work retreats to stag and hen parties, stay at holiday centres each year and, as a member of the team, you will play a key role in making their experience a memorable one!
You might be preparing the restaurants for breakfast, lunch or dinner, ensuring that apartments are clean, running welcome meetings and other events, looking after a kids club or entertaining guests as part of their evening show – the opportunities are plenty! Accommodation may be provided as part of your job, so it can be a great opportunity to get to know a new part of the UK.
The holiday centre industry is largely independently owned and operated by family businesses. Other than the Bourne Leisure group (which operates Butlins and Haven) very few operators have a significant market share.
Career opportunities and skills needed
There are a wide variety of jobs in the holiday centre industry, ranging from kitchen assistants through to entertainments staff and supervisory and managerial positions.
For a lot of the ‘entry-level’ positions, many employers say that the willingness to work hard and a good attitude are the most important things they look for. Committed workers who are willing to take on new responsibilities are most likely to progress.
Many holiday centres find it difficult to hang on to their staff, as employees sometimes do not stay in their job for long. Those who show enthusiasm and commitment to their job are often rewarded by employers with rapid progression up the ladder.
If you are looking to move into higher level (e.g. director) positions in this industry, you are likely to require previous managerial experience and to be able to display a solid understanding of the industry.
Click here to download an industry profile factsheet.