A strong interest for working in the hotel industry is best complimented by experience interning at a hotel. Internships provide an opportunity to work in departments and with experienced colleagues that otherwise may not be available for the entry-level job seeker.
Internships offer a win-win opportunity for both the intern and the hotel. In the same way the intern is testing the job without a long-term commitment, the hotel is testing the intern and seeing what long-term potential there may be. If interested, it is not uncommon for interns to receive employment by the hotel once the internship is completed.
Since hotels are a 24 hour operation, they provide great scheduling flexibility for interns that are students or have another job. The three-shift system used by most hotels, 7:30am - 3:30pm, 3:30pm - 11:30pm and 11:30pm - 7:30am, allows for interns to mix and match what works best for their schedules.
Another opportune time to consider an internship is during summer breaks. Often this correlates with high season at a hotel, and more internship opportunities are available.
For students that are studying hospitality management, a hotel internship is often a mandatory part of the curriculum. As a result, schools will offer great guidance and resources in helping students find these internships. For someone that is not studying hospitality, but would still like to garner hotel experience, the best way to discover these positions would be through contacting the hotel human resource office.
When applying for an internship, it is important to have a general idea of what department you'd like to intern in. As each hotel department is uniquely different, the duties of an intern can vary quite drastically depending on which department you intern in.
To learn more about landing the ideal internship for you, continue reading on in our Member's Section.