Report: Females make up just 5% of travel industry CEOs

Expedia Group has called for more inclusion and diversity initiatives in the industry

Expedia Group chief inclusion officer Melissa Maher
Expedia Group chief inclusion officer Melissa Maher

Expedia Group and PhocusWire have called for greater inclusion in the travel industry after it was highlighted women make up just 5% of travel industry CEOs.

Their co-authored whitepaper shed light on the disparities between men and women in the industry. Women comprise 67% of students in hospitality university programmes, though only 9% of those in president roles in the industry are women. In travel, specifically, the overall percentage of women in executive roles in commercial, general management, or financial leadership positions-excluding human resource-drops to just 20.7%.

The paper identified that the industry must provide better leadership growth plans, rolling out councils within companies to directly address growth bias. The paper also advised companies should be better at mentoring candidates for leadership positions.

Expedia Group chief inclusion officer Melissa Maher said: “With one in 10 people working in travel, our industry has an opportunity to ensure our workforce reflects the diverse customers, partners and communities we serve. I spend a lot of time in discussion with a range of people both inside and outside of our organisation, and this is a topic that people are really passionate about.”

Maher concluded: “D&I is a journey that requires constant listening, learning, and implementation of policies and programs that foster inclusion and belonging. At Expedia Group, we are deeply committed to an inclusive culture, as we know it is key to making us a stronger and smarter company.”

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