Sectors in travel: Accommodation

The accommodation sector is not only one of the most accessible for anyone hoping to take their first step into hospitality but can also provide a lifelong career.

More people are choosing to work in this sector, either at small, family-run properties or multinational corporate hotels.

The sector was cited as one of the biggest drivers of job growth in the UK earlier this year by the Office for National Statistics, and reports suggest jobseeker numbers have risen sharply since Covid as candidates are attracted to the career opportunities in hospitality.

The jobs available in the accommodation sector range from front-of-house positions such as receptionists, bartenders and porters to chambermaids and chefs.

Depending on the size and type of property, roles can include looking after younger guests in kids’ clubs, providing activities such as fitness coaching and watersports, performing as an on-stage entertainer, working as a therapist in a health spa, or acting as a concierge to help guests with their luggage and offer advice on transport and local excursions.

While many roles are customer-facing and require staff who enjoy interacting with the public, there are plenty of behind-the-scenes roles to keep a hotel’s rooms, facilities and eateries operating smoothly and to ensure that they meet guests’ expectations.

Hotels also require staff to take reservations and run events – from weddings to conferences – as well as to work in sales and marketing roles to promote the brand direct to consumers and to agents and operators selling the property.

As with all businesses, there are roles across different divisions, such as finance, accounting, IT, HR, marketing and operations.

What’s more, if you have always dreamt of living and working abroad, this could be your chance to give it a try.

International hotel groups have branches and offices in different areas of the world, so you can not only climb the career ladder but also fulfil your ambition of living and working abroad.

Credit: Lemono/
‘Work hard and be willing to try new things’

is assistant front office manager at Great Scotland Yard Hotel – The Unbound Collection by Hyatt

“My exposure to varied cultures growing up with family in international hospitality roles deepened my appreciation for travel and a hotel career. I started working shifts serving at banquets at Hyatt Regency Bellevue in Seattle in the US. At high school, I was offered a part-time job as a front office host.

“After completing my studies, I transferred to London as a front office team leader at Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill, before being promoted to assistant front office manager at the Great Scotland Yard Hotel.

“I work closely with other departments, ensuring each guest has an exceptional experience. We try to exceed expectations from the moment they arrive to when they depart. I’ve met an incredible range of people and get to explore wonderful cities. Every day is different, and I have to be agile and flexible.”

My advice…

“Always be curious, work hard, and be willing to try new things.”

‘Trial and error is the only way to evolve’

is general manager of The Zetter hotel in Marylebone, London

“I started in the industry almost 10 years ago as an assistant to a bartender to earn some money while I was studying.

“I soon fell in love with everything hospitality, from the versatility of roles available to understanding the running of a business.

“I found myself engrossed in hospitality from every aspect, from creating unforgettable guest experiences to understanding the mechanics of working with sales and revenue teams, and mapping out profitability.

“I worked from department to department to gain knowledge of running a hotel.

“As general manager, I work closely with schools and universities around the UK, and host round-table discussions on topics crucial to the industry, including teams’ wellbeing.”

My advice…

“Don’t limit yourself with a one-way view of how things run. And don’t be afraid of trial and error, as it’s the only way to evolve both yourself and the industry.”

Credit: Kris Piotrowski Photography