With sudden layoffs, 3+ round interview processes, and prospective employers ghosting candidates 2x more than pre-pandemic times, it seems that the current job market is more competitive and stressful than ever before. As a student currently in hospitality and hotel management, you are probably hearing these headlines and worried about job prospects post-graduation. But did you know that completing an internship in hospitality management abroad can be a great way to stand out from the crowd? 

In this article, we’ll be covering why you should apply for internships in hospitality management in the U.S., covering topics such as: 

  1. What you do as a hospitality management intern
  2. Career trajectory as a hospitality management intern 
  3. Benefits of doing hospitality internships in the U.S. 
  4. Places to work in hospitality management in the U.S. 
  5. How to choose the right hospitality management internship 

At Intrax Global Internships, our mission is to help students like you be able to gain international work experience to connect people and cultures, inspire personal growth, and prepare individuals to succeed as global citizens. 

As a U.S. Department of State designated J-1 Visa sponsor, we simplify the legalities across borders and provide ongoing support to students throughout the program. That means that we’re here to fully support your hotel or hospitality internship application process, so that you can launch your career without stressing in the process. 

What Do You Do During an Internship in Hospitality Management? 

An image of the Ritz-Carlton, a luxury hotel where you can spend your internship in hospitality management by working with Global Internship Premium Hospitality Internships
Image Source: Unsplash

Hospitality management involves overseeing the day-to-day operations of businesses in the hospitality sector, such as hotels, resorts, restaurants, and event venues. Hospitality managers ensure high-quality customer service, coordinate staff, develop business strategies, and maintain standards for safety and compliance. 

The goal is to create positive guest experiences while achieving business objectives. This field requires strong interpersonal skills, adaptability, and a thorough understanding of the hospitality industry. When completing an paid internship abroad in hospitality management, you will be exposed to various aspects of the industry, developing key skills and gaining comprehensive experience where you can apply your studies to real-life situations. Some of your responsibilities may include: 

  • Front-of-House Operations: You'll work at the front desk, handling guest check-ins, reservations, and customer service. This role requires strong communication skills and attention to detail.
  • Food and Beverage Management: Interns may rotate through kitchen and dining areas, learning about food prep, serving, and managing waitstaff. This helps you understand the logistics of food service in a hospitality setting.
  • Event Planning and Coordination: Interns often assist with the setup and execution of events like weddings, conferences, and corporate gatherings. You'll coordinate with various departments and handle logistics.
  • Back-of-House Operations: This includes housekeeping and maintenance, where you learn about cleaning standards, room inspections, and building maintenance.
  • Sales and Marketing: Interns may work with the marketing team to understand promotional strategies, digital marketing, and customer outreach. This experience provides insights into attracting guests and increasing revenue.
  • Human Resources: In some cases, interns can observe HR practices, including recruitment, training, and employee relations. This helps understand the people-management aspect of hospitality.

Before diving into the benefits of internships in hospitality management, you should be aware that there may be a few prerequisites you must match to be qualified to apply. Every internship varies in their specific requirements and desired qualifications. However, here are some common requirements that you can be aware of in advance: 

  • Educational Background: Typically, interns are students pursuing a degree in hotel management, hospitality, business management, or a related field. Some positions may require specific coursework or a certain level of completion of your degree program.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English is often a must due to its status as the lingua franca of the business world. Knowledge of additional languages is a significant advantage, especially in regions with a diverse international clientele.
  • Interpersonal Skills: Excellent communication and customer service skills are crucial, as much of your work will involve interacting with guests and staff.
  • Adaptability: The ability to adapt to new environments and cultures, especially for internships abroad, is essential. Flexibility in dealing with unexpected situations and problem-solving skills are highly valued.
  • Technical Skills: Familiarity with software, office applications (like Microsoft Office Suite), and the internet for research purposes.

Some companies may also prefer that you have prior work experience in the industry, and if you have certifications or training in hospitality-related areas, such as food safety, first aid, or customer service excellence. 

If you’re already set on applying to internships in hospitality management abroad and are planning to start your journey right away, we got you covered. Intrax Global Internships can be your J-1 visa sponsor, helping you from screening to program information, aiding in getting a J-1 visa and finding available internships so you can launch your hospitality career.

Career Trajectory from an Internship in Hospitality Management 

Internships in hospitality and hospitality management can be the catalyst for a long-term, successful career. In fact, a 2021 study by Baert et. al found that those who have internship experience are 12.6% more likely to be invited in a job interview. This means that internships can have a significant effect on your career outcomes, and set you up for a stable and linear career progression. 

If you are currently getting your degree in hospitality and hotel management, or are planning to get an internship in hospitality management, here is a typical career trajectory you can expect: 

  • Entry-Level Positions: Start with roles like front desk agent, bellhop, housekeeper, or server. These positions help you learn the basics of hospitality operations.
  • Supervisor Roles: After gaining experience, move into supervisory positions such as front desk supervisor, housekeeping supervisor, or shift supervisor in food and beverage. These roles involve managing small teams and overseeing daily operations.
  • Assistant Manager Roles: With more experience, progress to assistant manager roles, such as assistant front office manager or assistant food and beverage manager. You work closely with department heads to ensure smooth operations.
  • Department Manager Roles: Once you demonstrate leadership skills, advance to department manager positions like front office manager, food and beverage manager, or housekeeping manager. These roles have greater responsibility and involve managing larger teams.
  • General Manager Roles: With significant experience, aim for general manager positions in hotels or resorts. General managers oversee all aspects of a property, from guest services to financial management.
  • Senior Management Roles: At the top tier, pursue roles like director of operations, regional manager, or vice president of hospitality. These positions involve strategic decision-making, business development, and broader management of hospitality operations.

Continuous learning, adaptability, and strong leadership skills are essential as you advance in hospitality management.

Training and Professional Development

Throughout this trajectory, ongoing education, training, and professional development are crucial. Here are some ways to enhance your professional development throughout your career if you are interested in pursuing hospitality in the U.S.: 

  • Industry Certifications: Consider certifications like the Certified Hospitality Supervisor (CHS) or Certified Hospitality Department Trainer (CHDT) from the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA). These programs cover key topics in hospitality management and demonstrate your expertise.
  • Workshops and Seminars: Participate in industry events, workshops, and seminars to stay updated on trends and learn new skills. These are also opportunities to network with industry professionals.
  • On-the-Job Training: Many hospitality organizations offer in-house training for employees, focusing on specific skills like customer service, front desk operations, or food safety.
  • Advanced Education: Consider pursuing a master's degree in hospitality management or a related field to deepen your knowledge and increase promotion opportunities.

Benefits of Doing a Hospitality Internship in the U.S. 

Completing an internship in hospitality management already provides you a step up when you are applying for full-time positions. So why choose the United States as the place to intern? 

The U.S. has consistently been known as the #1 country for hospitality employment, and is the headquarters for many of the world’s leading hospitality companies. Moreover, the U.S. is a vast and diverse country, where you can be exposed to a variety of cultures and explore major cities as you develop your skills in hospitality management. Three main benefits to completing your internship in hospitality management in the U.S. are: 


  1. Professional growth and skill enhancement
  2. The U.S is a hub for hospitality 
  3. Networking opportunities

Professional Growth and Skill Enhancement

Interning internationally in the U.S. allows you to develop a wide range of skills essential for a successful career in hospitality. You gain hands-on experience in various aspects of the industry, such as customer service, front desk operations, food and beverage management, and event planning. This exposure helps you build a solid foundation in the key areas of hospitality.

The U.S. hospitality industry is known for its high standards and competitive environment. As an intern, you'll work alongside experienced professionals who can guide and mentor you, providing valuable feedback and insights. 

Moreover, the fast-paced nature of the U.S. hospitality sector encourages adaptability and problem-solving skills. You'll encounter real-world challenges and have the opportunity to develop practical solutions, enhancing your critical thinking abilities. You will also be exposed to the different work cadences, management styles, and operations that are unique to American work culture. 

The U.S. is a Hub for Hospitality 

International internships in the U.S. allow you to immerse yourself in a diverse cultural landscape. The U.S. is known for its multicultural population, with a variety of languages, customs, and traditions. This immersion provides valuable insights into different cultures and their expectations regarding hospitality and service.

The U.S. is a hub for international tourism and business, attracting visitors from all over the globe. This exposure enables you to understand global trends in hospitality and the different approaches to guest service, management, and operations.

A number of the top hospitality chains have headquarters in the U.S., including Hyatt hotels, Radisson Hotel Group, MGM Resorts, Marriott International, and more. By pursuing your internship in hotel management in the States, you will be located in the epicenter of the hospitality industry, allowing you to gain insights into management and operations in ways that otherwise may not be available. 

Networking Opportunities 

The U.S. hospitality industry is extensive, with connections to global brands, established professionals, and a wide network of industry experts. During your internship, you interact with various professionals, including managers, executives, and peers. This interaction creates a platform to build meaningful relationships and expand your network.

Networking during your internship can lead to mentorship opportunities, where experienced professionals guide and advise you on career paths and industry insights. These connections are invaluable for gaining job recommendations, referrals, and career advice. Engaging with professionals at industry events, workshops, and conferences can further enhance your network, providing access to a broader range of career opportunities.

You can experience these benefits with ease. Global Internships is here to help with the  J-1 visa application process, flights, and other logistical efforts that come with international internships. You can look through our list of available hospitality internships to find available opportunities or contact us if you have more questions. 

Places to Intern in Hospitality Management in the U.S. 

With so many hospitality corporations headquartered in the U.S, choosing where and how to get an internship can feel like a job in and of itself. Here are some places you can put on your list: 

The Ritz-Carlton

The Ritz-Carlton is renowned for its luxury and service excellence, making it an exceptional place for an internship in hotel management. Known for its commitment to model customer service, the Ritz-Carlton emphasizes training and professional development, offering interns a thorough introduction to luxury hospitality.

Interning at the Ritz-Carlton provides an opportunity to learn from industry leaders, gaining insights into high-end customer service, operations, and leadership. The hotel chain has a strong brand reputation, and an internship here can offer valuable networking opportunities and open doors to future career prospects in luxury hospitality.

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts 

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts is a leading luxury hotel brand known for its iconic properties and exceptional service. It's a great place for an internship in hotel management due to its commitment to sustainable practices, rich history, and a focus on guest experience. Interning at Fairmont provides exposure to high-end hospitality, allowing you to work with experienced professionals and gain insights into luxury hotel operations.

Additionally, Fairmont has a strong global presence, with a strong presence in Canada, offering networking opportunities and potential career paths within the company and beyond. It also provides extensive training and mentorship, equipping interns with valuable skills for a career in hotel management.

Auberge Resorts Collection 

Auberge Resorts Collection is a luxury hotel group known for its intimate and high-end properties set in unique and picturesque locations. Interning at Auberge Resorts Collection offers opportunities to work with seasoned professionals and gain hands-on experience in areas like guest services, food and beverage operations, and event management. The unique settings of these resorts, often in scenic and natural environments, also provide an interesting backdrop for learning about the balance between luxury hospitality and sustainability.

Additionally, the smaller scale and intimate nature of Auberge Resorts' properties allow interns to interact closely with both guests and staff, creating a more personalized learning experience. This setting fosters a deeper understanding of luxury hospitality and can lead to broader networking opportunities and career development within the luxury hotel sector.

Get Started with Premium Hospitality 

We know that internships at Ritz-Carlton, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, Auberge Resorts Collection, and other luxury hotels can be competitive and the top choice for the majority of candidates. At Global Internships, we want to support you throughout your internship process, including helping you get matched with top hospitality companies and ensuring that your internship in hospitality management runs smoothly. 

Our Premium Hospitality Internship matches you with luxury hotels, including the three mentioned above, allowing you to gain experience at ‚Äč‚Äčthe world‚Äôs leading hotels. Some program features include:¬†

  1. All hotels are rated by Forbes and have achieved a 4- or 5-star rating.
  2. You can leverage our signature organization relationships to be a top candidate. 
  3. We develop a training plan that identifies goals and responsibilities for both the candidate and host. 
  4. Our Program Advisors check-in with both the candidate and host to monitor satisfaction.
  5. Many of our hosts provide the opportunity to transfer at the end of your program to one of their international sister properties, allowing you to return home with experience and time of service!

You can request for more information if you are interested in learning more about the Premium Hospitality program.

Land Your Internship in Hospitality Management Today! 

At Global Internships, we know how confusing and time-consuming it is to search for internships that check all of the logistical requirements for you to work abroad. 

As a J-1 visa sponsor, we can help with: 

  • Screening participants
  • Selecting participants
  • Monitoring participants throughout their stay in the U.S.
  • Explaining to participants how the program work

We can also match you with host companies based on your goals, interest, and skill level. You’ll be able to receive services such as: 

  • Exclusive positions
  • Year-round start dates
  • Amazing customer service
  • Emergency support around the clock
  • Assistance with securing work authorization
  • An international network of connections

As a U.S. Department of State designated J-1 Visa sponsor, we can help you get a J-1 visa, show you available internships, guide you through specific programs in hospitality and teaching, and more. If you’re interested in starting your internship experience today, you can request information, begin your registration, or contact us today!

Apr 30, 2024
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