Hotel Management As A Career In South Africa

The hospitality industry is one of the major contributors to the economy of South Africa. The direct contribution of Travel & Tourism to the country’s GDP is expected to grow from 2.8% (in 2011) to 4.2% per annum by the year 2022. This sector is providing around 3.3% of the total employment opportunities, which is expected to rise by 1.9% per annum in the coming years.
Hotel Management as a Career in South Africa

All this shows that there are many opportunities awaiting a person wishing to make a career in Hotel Management in South Africa. A land endowed with beautiful beaches, picturesque locations, and pleasant weather, South Africa is a favoured world tourist destination. It is also an ideal place to learn hotel management and other hospitality courses. The country boasts of some of the top institutions offering hotel management courses at affordable rates.

Institutes offering Hotel Management Courses

Although there are numerous institutes offering various courses in hotel management, the top three schools are

  • South African School of Management
  • Blue Mountains International Hotel Management School
  • Charles Darwin University

Of these, BMIHMS is South Africa’s leading hotel school exclusively for hospitality education. There are four academic intakes every year, which offer the students an option to start their course at a time of their preference.

Careers in Hotel Management

Hotel Management as a profession offers a wide variety of career options. Hotel Management is about not only chefs, bartenders, waiters and kitchen hands. It is also not limited to jobs in hotels. There are numerous opportunities in various industries for a hotel management graduate although the bulk of the opportunities lie in the hospitality sector.

Potential Career Opportunities

A hotel management graduate can find a suitable job in any of the industries like

  • Commerce
  • E-commerce and technology
  • Education
  • Finance
  • Public sector
  • Hospitality
  • Sports and leisure
  • Human Resources
  • Media
  • Travel and tourism

The possible jobs that a hotel management graduate can find across these industries include

  • Business development officer
  • Online consultant
  • Trainer or facilitator
  • Revenue manager
  • Event organiser
  • Community manager
  • HR manager
  • Marketing manager
  • Food & beverage manager
  • General manager
  • Operations manager
  • Public Relations Executive
  • Event Planner
  • Head of Catering & Hospitality
  • Guest Services Agent
  • Front Office Manager
  • Travel agent
  • Tour operator
  • Wedding planner
  • Hotel manager

Evidently, hotel management as a career offer wide choices and it is up to the individual to make the most out of these opportunities.

Skills Required

A hotel management graduate should be able to become strategic operational leaders able to fill key managerial and decision–making roles. Hence, a person looking forward to choosing hotel management as a career should have certain personal attributes like

  • Good communication skills
  • Inter-personal skills
  • Ability to see the big picture
  • Thinking on feet
  • Quick decision-making
  • Professionalism
  • Honesty and integrity
  • Supportive nature

The Future

The hospitality industry is one of the fastest growing industries of the world and it is likely to remain so for a long time. It is estimated that this industry would represent 10% of total global employment. It means that the opportunities available to a hotel management aspirant are aplenty. For instance, the top ten leading hotel groups like Inter Continental, Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt and Starwood have added around 770,000 rooms to their total inventory since 2010. They are expected to add even more rooms and facilities, thereby opening up a plethora of career opportunities in hotel management.

Most international brands have a presence in South Africa. Hence, they, along with the boutique hotels, event management companies, and other such businesses, make hotel management an attractive career option in South Africa. Moreover, South Africa is one of the preferred tourist destinations of the world, which has opened up even more opportunities in the hospitality sector. Therefore, a person looking for a career in hotel management can take heart from the fact that there is no dearth of opportunities in this field.


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