Maybe you’ve always been interested in working at a hotel one day but you’re wondering ‘what is hospitality industry all about?’ We’ve compiled some frequently asked questions about hotel management, what it is, and what types of hospitality management courses you may take while pursuing your degree.

Q. What is Hospitality Industry?

A. The hospitality industry is generally recognized as a section of the wider service industry, with a focus on leisure, rather than more basic needs.

Q. What is the difference between the hospitality industry and the travel industry?

A. The hospitality industry and the travel industry are closely connected, but there are also some subtle differences to be aware of. On a basic level, the travel or tourism industry is concerned with services for people who have travelled away from their usual place of residence, for a relatively short period of time.

By contrast, the hospitality industry is concerned with services related to leisure and customer satisfaction. This may well mean offering services to tourists, but it can also include the provision of services to people who are not tourists, such as locals enjoying their free time, or people coming to an area for reasons other than tourism.

Q. What is hotel management?

A: While you may have stayed in several hotels before, you may have never wondered, ‘What is hotel management?’ Hospitality management is a broader, more general definition that covers hotel management as well as management at other businesses that provide services such as food and beverage, travel, and other businesses that serve both vacation and business travelers.

While hotel management programs may focus mainly on how to manage a hotel, and its departments, and its staff, hospitality management courses may branch out into food services, travel, and business management courses.

Q: What are some typical hospitality management courses?

A: Whether you’re planning on pursuing an associate’s or a bachelor’s degree in hospitality management, your courses will vary from program to program.

Some hospitality management courses you may take in order to earn an associate’s degree in hospitality management include:

  • Fundamental Hospitality Management Principles
  • Technology in the Hospitality Management Industry
  • Convention and Event Management
  • Accounting Principles
  • Employment Law

A bachelor degree program may also teach you the fundamentals, but also move into more technical or specific areas of hospitality management. Some courses you may take in order to earn a bachelor’s degree in hospitality management include:

  • Integrated Marketing Communications
  • Applied Business Ethics
  • Hospitality Law & Legal Issues
  • Applied Accounting and Finance
  • Integrated Marketing Communications

Q: Do I need to earn a hospitality management certificate or degree to pursue a career in hotel management?

A: While hospitality management certificate programs exist, most large, full-service hotels and resorts require hospitality manager applicants to have a bachelor’s degree in hospitality or hotel management.  At hotels that are smaller or provide fewer services, a candidate with an associate’s degree or a hotel management, restaurant management, or hospitality management certificate may be considered as candidates.

Importance of Hotel Profit & Loss Statement?

A hotel profit and loss (PnL) statement provides you with an analysis of your hotel’s revenue, cost and profit performance. It helps you understand how much bottom line margin the property is making. Therefore, it is essential for any hotel manager to fully understand each line item of their P&L statement, and where pertinent, how to interpret the data to inform business decisions.

They are typically carried out on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis. Although the frequency is entirely at your discretion and what you think is best for your hotel, I would recommend to review such a report at least with a monthly frequency to avoid the business moving off beyond control. Larger hotels even provide such reporting on a weekly or even daily basis to really micromanage their financial success.

How P&L statements help you understand your hotel profitability.?

Understanding your hotel’s financial performance involves thorough analysis of your balance sheet and what is often called your income statement – more commonly referred to as your P&L statement.

For many hoteliers, reading profit & loss statements can be challenging, but it’s a crucial step to knowing what affects overall profitability. Our Hotel P&L examples are designed to make the task a little less daunting. Because once you understand the relationship between income and expenses, and how various departments are performing over a given period, you can strategize more effectively.

To understand your P&L as well as possible, what it boils down to, simply, is this: total sales minus total costs equals hotel profits. While it doesn’t need to become complicated, the more detailed your P&L, the better for your understanding and insight regarding overall hotel operability and performance.