Around one third of staff working in guest houses, hotels, restaurants and pubs are now employed on zero hours contracts, according to a survey from chartered accountant MHA.
Yet, despite the flexibility for employers of operating zero contracts, more than 60% of staff employed on them regularly work 20 hours or more, with more than three-quarters of these routinely employed for 40 hours per week.
The Travel & Tourism Survey, which questioned 153 operators, also highlights an upturn in trading conditions, with 56% of operators reporting improved profitability in the last 12 months and 58% predicting that 2014 will be better still. However, 50% cited turnover either stagnant or growing by less than 5% over the last 12 months.
Andrew Burnham, head of the MHA travel and leisure sector group, said the number of employees working extended hours on zero hours contracts is one indicator of the growing confidence across travel and tourism businesses.
"This sector was always going to be an adopter of this employment option, but the numbers working what might be considered a ‘standard' working week suggest that this arrangement is working for both parties."