Hotels have seldom been busier, restaurants have wait times, and planes, as we know, are packed.

The U.S. travel and tourism industriy is rebounding from the recession and is enjoying revived demand from domestic travelers and foreign visitors, which results in more jobs across travel sectors.

Travel and tourism-related employment increased 1.9 percent to 7.6 million jobs in 2013, a gain of 146,000 jobs from 2012, according to new data released by the U.S. Department of Commerce.

The larger workforce comes directly as a result of a 4 percent increase in industry-related spending, totaling almost $1.5 trillion in 2013.

The U.S. travel and tourism industry can be measured in the goods and services sold to visitors, including hotel rooms, meals, plane tickets, and souvenirs.

Industry growth, up 3.5 percent in 2013, outpaced broader economic growth as measured by a 1.9 percent increased in GDP that year, the Depattment of Commerce states.. Total industry exports have more than doubled since 2003 and now account for almost one-third of all U.S. service exports.

The food services industry is the largest direct employer (5.4 million) in the travel and tourism industry, followed closely by the traveler accommodations sector (1.4 million) and transportation (1 million).

The data, provided by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, go into even more detail below:

U.S. Travel Employment by Sector 2013

SECTOREMPLOYMENT (thousands)Percent Change (2013 v. 2012)
All Tourism Industries5,3662.2
Traveler Accommodations1,3672.3
Vacation Home Rentals80
Food Services and Drinking Places1,7713.9
Transportation1,0510.7
Air Transportation Services441-0.7
All Other Transportation-Related Industries6101.8
Rail Transportation Services106.3
Water Transportation Services301.8
Interurban Bus Transportation19-1.3
Interurban Charter Bus Transportation13-0.9
Urban Transit Systems & Other Transportation472
Taxi Service441.2
Scenic & Sightseeing Transportation Services153.3
Automotive Equipment Rental & Leasing933.7
Automotive Repair Services45-0.3
Parking Lots & Garages164.2
Toll Highways4-0.3
Travel Arrangement & Reservation Services1720.9
Petroleum Refineries81.8
Gasoline Service Stations922.8
Recreation, Entertainment & Shopping9660.5
Recreation & Entertainment5340.8
Motion Pictures & Performing Arts231.2
Spectators Sports544.6
Participant Sports2181.9
Gambling174-2
All Other Recreation & Entertainment651.2
Shopping4320.1
All Other Inudstries2042.3

Source: U.S. Department of Commerce

Photo Credit: American Airlines employees at LaGuardia Airport examing the airline's then-new livery. Dennis Schaal