What degree is best for hotel management?

26th June, 2024

What degree is best for hotel management

In this article

In the fast-paced world of hospitality, the role of a hotel manager is vital. They are responsible for ensuring smooth operations and delivering outstanding guest experiences. A solid educational background is essential to excel in this field, but knowing what degree is best for hotel management can be hard.

Choosing the right degree can be daunting, with numerous options available. In this article, we’ll look at the different options and provide practical insights to help you make an informed decision. Whether you’re starting out or looking to advance your career, this guide will steer you in the right direction towards a fulfilling career in hotel management.

Understanding hotel management

There are a lot of different responsibilities involved in managing a hotel to ensure the efficient functioning of the property while providing exceptional service to guests. This includes managing day-to-day operations, overseeing staff, maintaining facilities and optimizing financial performance. Hotel management also involves creating memorable guest experiences, fostering a welcoming atmosphere and maintaining industry standards and regulations to uphold the reputation and success of the establishment.

Key skills and competencies required in the field

Success in hotel management demands diverse qualities to help you thrive in the industry. Some essential managerial skills you should pick up through studying a hospitality degree include:

  • Leadership skills: crucial for guiding and motivating staff to achieve organizational goals and deliver outstanding service
  • Communication: strong communication skills are needed for effectively conveying information, resolving conflicts and interacting with guests and team members
  • Customer service: exceptional customer service skills are paramount for creating positive guest experiences and building loyalty
  • Problem-solving skills: the ability to quickly and effectively address issues that arise in a fast-paced environment is essential for hotel managers
  • Financial management: proficiency in budgeting, financial analysis and revenue management is vital for maintaining profitability and sustainability
  • Adaptability: flexibility and the ability to adapt are essential for navigating the dynamic nature of the hospitality industry and responding to changing circumstances
  • Attention to detail: a keen eye for detail is important for maintaining high standards of cleanliness, service quality and guest satisfaction

Organizational skills: being able to organize your tasks and track issues properly is vital, as is multitasking

Career prospects and opportunities

Career prospects and opportunities

The field of hotel management offers diverse career opportunities for individuals with the right skills, qualifications and experience. Graduates with a degree in hotel management can pursue various roles in the hospitality industry, including:

  • Hotel general manager: overseeing all aspects of hotel operations and ensuring profitability and guest satisfaction
  • Front office supervisor: handling all front desk operations, reservations and guest services to ensure smooth check-in/check-out processes and guest satisfaction
  • Food and beverage manager: handling dining facilities, menu planning and food service operations to provide exceptional dining experiences for guests
  • Revenue manager: optimizing revenue streams, pricing strategies and distribution channels to maximize profitability and occupancy rates
  • Sales and marketing manager: developing and implementing sales and marketing strategies to attract guests, increase bookings and drive revenue growth
  • Event coordinator: planning and coordinating events, conferences and special occasions hosted at the hotel to meet client needs and exceed expectations
  • Human resources manager: managing staffing needs, recruitment, training and employee relations to ensure a skilled and motivated workforce
  • Operations manager: overseeing day-to-day operations, facilities management and quality assurance to maintain high standards of service and guest satisfaction

Degree options for hotel management

If you want to study a hospitality management program with the aim of getting into hotel management, there are many courses you can choose from. It’s important to find the right kind of program for your aspirations. Let’s look at some of the most common available for aspiring hotel managers.

Bachelor of business administration in hospitality management

This degree type combines foundational business principles with specialized coursework in hospitality management. Students learn about business topics such as accounting, economics, management and marketing as well as specific aspects of hospitality management. The program equips graduates with the skills needed to succeed in various roles in the hospitality industry, including hotel management, event planning and food service management.

Learn from hospitality business experts

With world-class tuition from leading professionals, our BBA program gives you all the skills you need to succeed in hotel management.

Bachelor of arts in hospitality management

These degree programs emphasize the service-oriented aspects of hospitality management, focusing on guest relations, communication and leadership skills. Students explore topics such as hospitality marketing, customer service, event management and strategic planning. 

Associate of hospitality management

This two-year program provides a foundation in hospitality management principles and practices. Students learn about various aspects of the hospitality industry, including lodging operations, food and beverage management and guest services. The program prepares graduates for careers as supervisors in hotels, restaurants, catering companies and other food service establishments, but graduates may need further education or years of experience to reach more senior roles.

Certificate programs

Hotel management certificates offer specialized training in specific areas. They are typically shorter in duration than degree programs and focus on topics such as front desk operations, event planning, revenue management or food safety. Certificate programs may be suitable for individuals seeking to improve their skills or gain specialized knowledge in a particular area of hotel management.

Master’s degrees in hotel management

For those looking to change or advance their careers and delve deeper into hotel management, pursuing a graduate degree in the field can be a significant step forward. Master’s programs in hotel management include advanced coursework, specialized training and opportunities for research and practical application in various aspects of hospitality management. You can also find master’s programs that specialize in fields such as luxury hospitality or digital marketing for hotels.

Executive master’s programs

These special courses in hotel management are designed for mid-career professionals seeking to boost their leadership skills and advance their careers in the hospitality industry. They typically cater to working professionals and offer flexible scheduling options, such as weekend classes or online coursework. Executive master’s programs focus on advanced topics such as strategic leadership and global hospitality trends, providing experienced professionals with the knowledge and skills needed to excel in senior leadership roles.

Factors to consider when choosing a degree

There are many things to think about when choosing a degree in hospitality management. Considering the following factors will help you find the right course to further your goals.

Personal career goals and aspirations

Before selecting a degree program in hotel management, it’s essential to consider your long-term career goals and aspirations in the hospitality industry. Reflect on the specific roles you want to pursue and determine whether the degree program aligns with your career objectives. Think about whether you prefer a more general degree that provides a broad foundation in hotel management or a specialized program that focuses on a particular aspect of the hospitality sector, such as marketing or food and beverage management.

Program accreditation and reputation

A critical factor to consider when choosing a degree program in hotel management is how well regarded the program is and whether it meets established standards of quality and rigor. Research the accreditation status of the program and verify it is recognized by reputable accrediting bodies in the field of hospitality education. Also consider the reputation of the institution and the program in the hospitality industry, as a degree from a well-regarded school may improve your career prospects and credibility.

Curriculum and course offerings

Review the curriculum and modules of the degree program to ensure they cover relevant topics and provide a comprehensive education in hotel management. Look at the specific courses offered, the faculty expertise and the opportunities for hands-on learning, such as internships or industry partnerships. Consider whether the program offers optional courses that align with your interests or career goals, allowing you to tailor your education to your specific needs.

Cost and financial considerations

You also need to consider the cost of tuition, fees and other expenses associated with the degree program and consider how it fits with your budget. Research available financial aid options, such as scholarships, grants, loans or work-study programs to help offset the cost of education. However, when you are looking at the cost, it is important to consider the potential return on investment of the degree program, including the earning potential and career advancement opportunities it may provide on graduation.

Location and campus facilities

Where you study and what the campus is like can significantly impact your overall educational experience and quality of life. Consider factors such as proximity to industry hubs or internship opportunities, campus amenities and resources, housing options and overall campus culture. Determine whether the location and campus facilities align with your preferences and lifestyle and consider how they may contribute to your academic and personal growth.

Degree courses with internships

Many degree programs in hotel management offer valuable internship opportunities as part of the curriculum. Some of the main benefits of choosing a course with an internship are:

  • Practical experience: internships provide students with hands-on experience in hospitality operations, allowing them to develop practical skills and knowledge that complement classroom learning
  • Industry exposure: working in the field through an internship exposes students to the day-to-day realities of the hospitality industry, helping them gain insights into different roles, departments and career paths
  • Networking opportunities: placements offer a great chance to build professional connections and networks in the hospitality industry, which can be valuable for future job opportunities and career advancement
  • Resumé enhancement: completing internships can look great on students’ resumés and make them more competitive in the job market, demonstrating their practical skills and industry experience to potential employers
  • Career exploration: internships provide students with the opportunity to explore different aspects of the hospitality industry and help cement their career interests and goals


Choosing the right degree for hotel management is a significant decision that can shape your career trajectory in the dynamic and rewarding hospitality industry. There are various factors to consider when selecting a degree program, including personal career goals, program accreditation, curriculum offerings, internship opportunities, cost considerations and campus facilities. So, what degree is best for hotel management? Ultimately, you have to weigh up the various hospitality program options and find the right course for you.

Whether you opt for a bachelor’s degree, associate degree or certificate program, it’s essential to choose a program that aligns with your interests, goals and aspirations. Look for programs that offer a comprehensive curriculum, practical internship experiences and opportunities for hands-on learning to develop the skills and competencies needed for success in the industry, all of which are available at renowned hospitality schools such as Les Roches. If you’re unsure of your career path, be sure to look at other careers you can enter with a hospitality degree to see what exciting roles await you after studying.