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Hotel Front Desk Clerk (NOC 6525) may also be called:

  • Guest Services Agent
  • Room Clerk
  • Night Clerk
  • Hotel Receptionist

What Would I Do?

Hotel front desk clerks work in the lobby or reception area of hotels, motels and resorts and provide a variety of guest services.

You will:

  • Make advance reservations for guests
  • Greet new guests, record their information, and assign them to rooms
  • Present statements of charges to departing guests and receive payment
  • Answer guests’ questions about the hotel and local area
  • Deal with customer concerns and complaints

For more information see:

Am I Suited For This Job?

The job is challenging, varied and offers the opportunity to work flexible hours and meet many new people.

Hotel front desk clerks are the main contact for guests during their stay. You should have an interest in hospitality service and enjoy meeting new people. Excellent customer service and interpersonal skills are essential.

Other important skills include:

  • Multi-tasking and time management
  • Effective conflict management and decision-making
  • Knowledge of the local area
  • Computer skills
  • Knowledge of a second language is helpful

You are often required to work nights, very early mornings, and evening and weekend shifts. You spend much of the day on your feet.
Maintaining a professional attitude is important as you may have to deal with difficult situations when a hotel guest has a complaint. The pace of the work can be fast during peak periods. You may be required to wear a uniform or follow a dress code.

Sources: WorkBCCareer Cruising  database (Profile for Hotel Desk Clerk), Go2hr

What Are The Wages And Benefits?

In British Columbia, the average annual salary ranges from $11,000 to $33,000. Your wage depends on type of hotel and region of the province.

In BC’s regions, you can expect to make:

hotel front desk clerk wages

Table from Job Bank Wage Report

In addition to a salary, full-time hotel front desk clerks may receive benefits such as paid vacation and sick leave.

Some hotel desk clerks are members of a union. This means your wages and benefits are negotiated on your behalf by union representatives.

Sources: WorkBC, Career Cruising database

What Is The Job Outlook In BC?

The changing marketplace is creating new demand for hotel front desk workers.

A number of job openings are expected to result from new hotels or the expansion of existing businesses. Older hotel properties are been renovated or expanded to meet market demand.

Many job openings will also result from the need to replace workers who retire or move on to other occupations.

job outlook for hotel front desk workers

Chart from WorkBC
Source: WorkBC

How Do I Become a Hotel Front Desk Clerk?

In British Columbia, trade certification for hotel front desk clerks is available, but not mandatory.

Completion of secondary school is generally required to work as a Hotel Front Desk Clerk.

In some cases employers may also ask for post-secondary courses in hospitality service or business. On the job training may be provided.

“Emerit” professional certification is available, but not required by employers. This certification leads to the Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council’s designation Tourism Certified Professional (Front Desk Agent).

For more information about training and certification see:

How Do I Find A Job?

Where do Hotel Front Desk Clerks Work?

Most are employed in:

  • Hotels
  • Motels
  • Resorts

Finding Advertised Jobs

Jobs are advertised in a variety of sources including newspapers, magazines and online job sites.

Local Newspapers

You can look at the Vancouver Sun & The Province at Vancouver Public Library for free. Check the job postings daily, the careers section in the Vancouver Sun on Wednesdays and Saturdays and, in The Province on Sundays.

Job White Pages

  • Available online or in print at the Central Library
    NOTE: You can only access this database from the Central Library or VPL branch libraries. Access is NOT available from home or outside the Library.

Online Job Postings

Finding “Hidden Jobs”

Many job vacancies are not advertised. The resources below help you with finding jobs in this “hidden” job market.

Using Directories to Create a List of Potential Employers

You can use company directories to produce lists of employers who employ hotel front desk clerks in Vancouver or the Lower Mainland. Contact them directly to find out if they’re hiring.

  • Reference Canada
    Click on “Start Search” beside Canadian Businesses, then select the “Advanced Search” button.
    Select both “Keyword/SIC/NAICS” under Business Type and “City” under Geography.
    In the top search box enter “hotels” and click LOOKUP.
    Select the appropriate headings.
    Lower down, select the Province, choose the cities, and click the “View Results” button.
    NOTE: You can access this database from a Library computer. If you are using a computer from outside the Library, you will need a Vancouver Public Library card to login to this database. After clicking on the database name, you will be asked to enter your library card number and PIN (usually last four digits of your telephone number).

Networking, Volunteering and Temporary Agencies

Many positions are filled by people who have been recommended by someone they know. Networking, working as a volunteer or registering with a temporary employment agency are good ways of helping you find jobs and meet people in your industry.

Networking and the Hidden Job Market:

When looking for work, be sure to talk to friends, relatives and neighbours. They may know someone who is hiring! Working as a volunteer, attending events, and joining clubs and associations are good ways to gain “Canadian experience.” They are also good ways to meet people to learn about the local job market.

For additional tips see:

Applying for a Job

In Canada, employers usually expect to receive a resume and a cover letter that identifies the position you are applying for and summarizes your relevant experience.

Use the library catalogue  to find books on writing resumes and cover letters specific to your industry.

For more information see:

Where Can This Job Lead?

Front desk clerks can advance to concierge positions.

With experience and further education you may progress to supervisory positions, such as front office supervisor, housekeeping supervisor, director of guest services, or hotel manager. You may also move into to positions in the sales and marketing department of the hotel.

Where Can I Find More Information?