The hospitality industry is not for the faint hearted but it can offer interesting and rewarding careers for those with the right disposition. A harsh reality is that the hours are long, the work is hard and you are expected to smile your way through it. The advantages are that career and travel options are great and there is never a dull day. Also, the opportunity to meet incredible people from all over the world makes it worthwhile.
Generally, practical training is a critical part of a hospitality course. Hospitality schools will often be affiliated to or have connections with various hotels and guest houses so that students can get some real-life work experience.
There are many different avenues within the field. For example, there is food and beverage management, hospitality management, accommodation, tourism and also business subjects like communications, accounting and marketing. If cooking and food are your passion, it is also possible to go into culinary arts as part of hospitality course. The actual job options are many, but the scope of this article is limited to just describing the differences between hospitality and food and beverage.
This course usually allows students to step into junior management positions in hotels and guest houses. It teaches the basics of hospitality, as well as aspects of management. Courses will range from subjects like food production theory to sales and marketing and guest care. It is something of an overview of the hospitality system and also involves practical work experience.
Food and Beverage Management
Such a program will focus on the “craft skills” of food and beverage, with subjects such as food safety, and bar and beverage management. These courses are more focused on kitchens and bars and the back-end of hotels rather than the front end like hospitality management. Like the hospitality management courses there is also a strong business element, with focus on sales and marketing, supervision, hotel and restaurant accounting and so on. Students would then go and gain experience in top kitchens either in their area or abroad
If you are tied down to an area or have to work full time as well as study it is possible to get a hospitality qualification through distance learning or correspondence. This is also a very useful option for those already in the field who want to upgrade their skilla and gain further qualifications while still working.
The hospitality industry is an exciting one, and is a good option for those who desire travel as part of their careers. To ensure that you are happy in your chosen career it is wise to do all the necessary research first, such as checking out the pros and cons of each different job within hospitality. Practical work experience is valuable in finding out if this is something you really can do for a living. Even before entering a course it might be wise to do some job shadowing first; just to be sure you know this is where you want to go.