Up, Up & Away: Older Adults Trading Work for Perks

The travel industry is one that was substantially impacted by the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Most travelers have become very familiar with canceled or delayed flights due to a mixture of high demand for travel and high employee shortages. Older adults are doing their part to help by taking part-time work in the travel industry—while enjoying some nice perks! The Seattle Times reports on a new trend: older adults are taking advantage of some attractive travel perks that come with working for the airlines. Some older travel workers are enjoying high-end getaways for a fraction of the price they would pay as a non-travel industry employee! 

This trend has slowly increased since 2020, which is now considered “the great resignation” period. The “great resignation” epithet highlights just how dire the employee shortage is for all industries across the map, and especially for travel. The jobs that older adults have started taking on are auxiliary types of jobs such as ramp agents, front-desk agents for hotels, and other customer service-oriented roles. The travel industry seems grateful to have the help; 65% of recent new hires in the industry are older than 50. 

The draw to the industry may have to do with the perks of traveling on a budget, but it also may bring some relief to rising costs of living in the US. With inflation hitting record highs, it is presumed that older adults who are retired and living on a fixed income are especially affected.  


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Kamin, D. (2022). Silver-Haired and Shameless About Perks: Retirees Take Part-time Work in Travel. The Seattle Times.

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