It’s an undisputed fact of life that every single one of us needs to eat and sleep. No matter where you are in the world there will be some form of service there waiting to feed you and give you a bed.
Hospitality is one of the worlds oldest and strongest industries. And for the aspiring traveller, it provides the opportunity to work almost anywhere in the world.
Maybe you dream of heading up the machine at a specialty coffee shop in New York, running front-of-house in one of Dubai’s elite hotels, learning from the French in a Parisian kitchen, or managing a Marrakech hostel. The beauty of hospitality is the rich cultural experiences it provides as you immerse yourself in a new city, language and culinary scene.
Whether you’re preparing for a year abroad or you’re set on creating a high profile international career, the opportunities to create a hospitality career you can travel with are endless.
To give you the best chance of standing out from the crowd and gain global work experience follow these top tips:
Get a broad base of hospitality experience
When it comes to hospitality, having experience as an ‘all-rounder’ can go a long way in helping you land jobs around the world. If you’re travelling and working for shorter periods of time you’ll often need to be flexible with what’s on offer in the towns and cities you land in.
Try to gain experience or exposure in a variety of roles to help build a tool kit of skills you can adapt to the job opportunities available.
Not only will it open the doors to more potential jobs, but it also gives you the added advantage of being able to fill multiple roles within a business - a huge bonus for many employers!
Some basic areas to explore include:
Hotel & Resorts
- Guest services
Food & Beverage
- Basic food-handling
Look for opportunities with global hotel brands
Part of creating a global brand means creating a consistent global experience for guests.
To do this major hotel brands implement the same or similar systems, processes and standards across their hotels, so their guests have a sense of familiarity and comfort no matter where they are in the world.
Many major hotel groups have multiple brands and chains across the globe. Some of the largest hotel groups include:
- Hilton Hotels - 5,405 properties
- Marriott - 6,542 properties
- Wyndham Hotel Group - 8976 properties
Working within global chains offers some major employee benefits including:
- Access to internal job sites that advertise global openings to existing staff members before advertising to the public
- Eligibility for internal world-class education and training
- Work experience that is transferrable to hotels around the world
- Discounts and travel deals for group and partner properties
The same applies if you are specialising in craft areas, for example as a sommelier or within specialty coffee or fine dining. Look for opportunities with reputable brands that have global recognition within industry circles to give future employers an idea of your background and experience.
Arm yourself with some formal qualifications
The competition within hospitality can be high, especially if you’re travelling to popular destinations or looking to land an opportunity with a well-known establishment.
Having a certification in your chosen area can be a major advantage. It demonstrates you have a standard skill level and experience and are committed to learning your craft.
It also aids in your credibility when potential employers struggle to reach references or have a little context of the types of venues you’ve previously worked in.
If you don’t have any experience, consider completing some formal training.
Recognised prior learning can certify your existing experience
If you do have the experience you may be able to have your existing skills recognised and receive certification without completing further study.
There’s a wide range of commercial cookery and hospitality certifications available through recognition of prior learning (RPL) covering commercial cookery, hospitality management, travel and tourism.
To find out if you can get certified for your hospitality experience complete the free 60 second skills test.