Calling All Students! Here's How to Land a Great Summer Job in Hospitality
Seasonal work is a great way to have fun, make important contacts and earn some money over your summer break. There are plenty of opportunities to work in hospitality during the peak, summer vacation time. You may want to consider a resort, a cruise line, restaurant, event planning or an activities coordinator job.
In addition to making some money, you’ll gain experience, learn new skills, and enjoy some amazing perks. While you may be working a lot of hours, you can still take advantage of pool access, discounted food, and entry to local amusement parks, or log some beach hours at a location people save all year just to visit for one week.
Here are some tips to help you land that summer job of your dreams:
- Start early: These jobs fill up fast, and it’s often “first come, first serve.” Since many of these positions don’t require a lot of experience, it doesn’t take HR a lot of time to choose candidates. The peak time to apply is by April. You might even see job applications posting as early as February. Don’t wait.
- Be flexible: It may not be the job you had in mind, but if the position is in a great location with opportunities to learn new things, meet new friends and give you valuable experience, don’t hesitate. It will give you the chance to put some customer service experience on your resume and show that you’re open to trying new things. Being flexible is a requirement in the hospitality industry.
- Do some research: Look into the companies you hope to work for in the location you’re interested in. Make sure you know what they need and what’s expected of their employees.
- Be aware of the how you’ll be paid: Some jobs are paid hourly with overtime; some have no overtime and you work as many hours as they need you during the peak season. Some opportunities come with tips that make up for a smaller wage. Make sure you know what and how often you’ll be paid.
- Show up well-dressed and neat for the interview: Of course you’ll apply and send your resume online, but if possible, try to show up in person and meet the people you’ll be working with to make a connection. Put your best foot forward and show up well-groomed and prepared with a copy of your resume.
- Be sure you list any related experience: Even if you haven’t worked at a hotel or resort before, let the hiring manager know if you’ve done some volunteering or other work that may be related to the work you’ll be doing. For example: if you were a camp counselor in the past or you’ve worked with kids and directed activities on a daily basis, that may be perfect at a family resort. Maybe you were a lifeguard at the neighborhood pool or worked at the local country club restaurant. All these experiences can give you a leg up on the competition.
- Ask about housing: If you’ll be staying at a resort, will there be employee housing? Is it included as part of your employment, or are you paying a discounted rent? Make sure you know about your potential living arrangements and any discounts or room share options available.
- Ask about meals: Same as housing. Are there any meals included during the day or is there a meal plan you can buy into? Are you staying in a place with a kitchen where you’ll be able to cook or is it more of a dorm situation?
- Going overseas? If you plan to go to another country, you need to be sure you have the required documents. Do you need a work visa? Is your passport up to date? Do you need specific shots before you leave? Be sure you are ready to go when you get the job!
Every type of job from dishwashers to maids to tour guides is up for grabs. It’s a great opportunity for a student to spend a summer break, have some fun, gain experience, travel, make some money and find out if working in hospitality is a good fit for you.
Resorts love having college-age workers that bring great vitality, energy and excitement to the job. These positions all require excellent customer services skills, but most don’t require much experience. In your summer job, you’ll live and work in a fabulous setting and have an experience you’ll never forget. Get started – now’s the time to apply!