Hoteliers in Bristol are planning to recruit hundreds of new employees in anticipation of a busy summer of staycations in the South West of England.
According to the Bristol Hoteliers Association (BHA), which represents some 40 hotels in the city, at least 500 roles are immediately available as businesses prepare to reopen in May.
BHA chair Raphael Herzog said: "After one of the most difficult years any of us can remember we are now in a position to begin to plan with some certainty for when we can re-open, hopefully without having to go back into lockdown again.
"Around the city, hotels will be looking to recruit at least 500 people, and are planning to recruit even more over the summer, as efforts are made to promote Bristol as a destination and attract tourists back to the city."
He added that members were hoping to host some of the weddings that had been postposed due to the pandemic, with around 100 planned between June and December.
Much of the recruitment to meet demand will be made using the government's Kickstart Scheme, which provides funding to employers to create job placements for people aged between 16 and 24 who are on universal credit or at risk of long-term unemployment.
Herzog said: "Even if we do all re-open on 17 May we won't instantly be able to operate at the same levels of income we were at pre-lockdown, so any support we can get will be extremely helpful in order to secure our long-term recovery.
"The Kickstart Scheme is going to be extremely valuable, a huge help not only to us but to those young people. It provides funding for 25 hours of work per week for a total of six months, but who knows what may happen after that."