What is Guest House Management?
Guest House Management is the managing and running of a guest house, and all the day-to-day activities that goes along with it. This includes things such as handling bookings, dealing with customers and arranging for housekeeping.
Learn about all of this and more from our Guest House Management Courses.
The Tourism industry is one of the biggest and fastest growing industries in South Africa and guest houses are very popular with tourists. The reason for this is that it offers a more personal experience than a hotel and there are many available.
What are the Duties of a Guest House Manager?
In most cases, the guest house manager is also the owner of the guest house, running their own small business. This requires them to fulfill different roles and perform a variety of duties.
Any paperwork is considered administration. This involves things such as making bookings, managing the finances of the guest house, ordering supplies when needed and keeping track of all supplies.
Guest house managers need to deal with customer complaints, make special arrangements for customers when needed and provide guests with information. It can be any information such as nearby tourist attractions, public transport and personal safety measures.
Guest houses usually offer one meal per day, which is usually breakfast. Depending on the services you offer, you might need to plan a menu for each day. Planning a meal doesn’t just mean deciding what to serve. It also includes figuring out what ingredients you need and how much you’ll need, and how much it will cost. It’s also important to find out if there are any dietary restrictions from your guests.
A guest house manager is responsible for the maintenance of the guest house itself. This means that whenever something is broken or a guest reports a problem, it’s your responsibility to fix it. You’ll need to regularly check all the rooms, the building, and equipment to make sure that everything is in perfect condition.
What Skills do Guest House Managers Need?
Guest house managers need to have certain skills in order to do well in their job. Managing a guest house is a big responsibility. It’s more than just handing the keys over to guests. They should also:
- Be able to work with all kinds of people
- Have good communication skills
- Be flexible
- Have knowledge of South Africa’s tourist attractions, geography, its unique history, politics, plants and animals.
- Have organisational skills
- Have an interest in food and cooking
- Be able to deal with unexpected situations
How can I Start my own Guest House Business?
There are many different things to consider before you start your own guest house. You’ll need to look at your location, target market, local laws and advertising.
Buy, Revamp or Build?
The first thing you’ll need is a property. You could choose to buy a guest house, revamp a house, or build one if you have the money available. Buying an existing guest house is the simplest way, but it’s more expensive than buying a normal house.
Revamping a house is another option, but it can become expensive and you’ll have to wait months before your property is ready to use as a guest house.
Location and Target Market
Are you starting your guest house in a tourist-rich area or a university town? In any area, you need to look into the wants and needs of your possible clients. It’s important to remember that while you might have customers all year round, you will have more business at certain times of the year, such as tourist season.
It’s also important to check with local government about where you want to start your guest house. You need to make sure that you are in line with all laws in terms of licensing, display signs, regional planning and zoning.
Once you have your guest house set up, you need to let people know about it. You can advertise online by using social media, in local newspapers and by using flyers. Also look for any tourist publications or try to advertise at the local tourist information centre.
How do I run a Successful Guest House?
Guest houses can be very successful if you impress your guests and gain loyal, returning customers.This means making sure that the guest house is attractive and clean, everything is in working condition, your guests get good service and that people know about you.
The outside and entrance of your guest house are the most important areas as they are the first things your potential guests see. It can easily make people decide whether they are staying there or not. Make sure that the outside, including the garden, is attractive and well maintained.
Your rooms must be attractive and in good condition. Make sure that nothing is broken or damaged. Besides this, your rooms need to be neat and clean. You also need to make sure that the room has everything that was advertised and that it is in working condition. Arrange for your rooms to be cleaned daily and inform your guests about the cleaning schedule.
Being friendly, professional and helpful will make the stay at your guest house a pleasant experience for your guests. If they have a problem, make sure to deal with it immediately.
If you give your customers good service, they might become a regular customer. Chances are they will recommend you to their family and friends, which could result in more customers.
Advertising your guest house doesn’t stop once you’ve opened. In order to increase your customer numbers, you need to make more people aware of your new guest house. Using social media to help promote your business can really help to spread the word of your new business. Make sure you know when the tourist season is and put more effort into advertising around that time.
What Skills Will I Learn From These Courses?
The Guest House Management courses at Skills Academy will teach you many things, such as:
- How to open up your own guest house
- How to manage your guest house successfully
- How to communicate well with your clients
- How to lead a team
- How to perform different admin tasks
Achieve Your Dream by Signing up for our Guest House Management Courses Today!
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