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Hotel Reservation Agent Duties and Responsibilities

A hotel reservation agent's responsibilities will range depending on the size and location of a hotel, but a few core tasks are almost always associated with the job. Based on listings we analyzed, these duties are typically assigned to reservation agents:

Make Reservations The main responsibility of a hotel reservation agent is to help customers with planning and booking reservations for a hotel. Agents work with customers to plan out the duration of their stay and then send booking confirmation to guests after processing payments. They are often the first person a customer will contact to sort out any issues with a reservation.

Provide Customer Service Another important responsibility for a hotel reservation agent is providing customer service support if there is a problem with payment confirmation or issues navigating a hotel website to book a stay. Hotel reservation agents must hold themselves to the highest standards of professionalism as they work through customer issues.

Sell Additional Services and Upgrades Many hotels have a variety of package deal options that combine a room with additional opportunities to rent a car, buy travel insurance, or attend a local event at a reduced cost. Hotel reservation agents are usually encouraged (or required) to upsell and promote relevant travel packages and touring opportunities to customers.

Give Directions and Advice Customers often turn to the hotel reservation agent who confirmed their booking if they have any questions about parking, directions to the hotel, or restaurants and attractions in the surrounding area. Reservation agents are expected to have knowledge about the area a hotel is located in and be prepared to offer advice when necessary.

Maintain Records Hotel reservation agents are responsible for keeping accurate records about customer bookings, payments, and any additional information that hotel staff might need when interacting with a guest. They might also use records to follow up with previous customers to encourage them to book another stay at the hotel.


Hotel Reservation Agent Skills and Qualifications

People with excellent customer service skills, a warm disposition, and good problem-solving abilities will thrive as a hotel reservation agent. Previous experience is usually not required, but many hotels will offer training to agents who are hired. The following skills are essential to getting the job done:
  • Interpersonal skills - patience, a good listening ear, and confident communication are important skills a hotel reservation agent must rely on while assisting customers
  • Organization skills - hotel reservation agents usually manage large amounts of customer information and should be able to easily keep track of everything
  • Memorization - reservation agents are expected to have an in-depth knowledge of hotel features, amenities, and room information, along with information about the surrounding area
  • Patience - work as a hotel reservation agent can include many stressful situations with a variety of customers, and agents are expected to remain calm and pleasant no matter the situation
  • Technological proficiency - the duties of hotel reservation agents are carried out on the phone or on the computer, and those in the role should be comfortable with using technology

Hotel Reservation Agent Education and Training

The majority of hotels ask their reservation agents to have at least a high school diploma or GED. Many offer job training that spans across a couple of weeks or months, depending on the type of hotel. Training usually includes an introduction to the hotel's booking system and how to use equipment like phones, computers, and other technology.

Hotel Reservation Agent Salary and Outlook

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) lists the national median annual salary for reservation agents as $35,230, with a median hourly wage of $16.94. Hotel reservation agents in the 10th percentile earn close to $21,500 a year (or $10.31 an hour), while the highest paid make about $59,000 a year ($28.49 hourly). Depending on the hotel, benefits like health insurance and paid time off may be available to employees who work a certain number of hours. According to the BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook, there are over 1,500,000 hotel reservation agents employed in the United States. This sector is projected to grow 3 percent through 2026.

Helpful Resources

We searched the web for the best industry resources to help you continue exploring a career as a hotel reservation agent. Here are more ways to learn if becoming one is right for you:

American Society of Travel Agents - This organization is the top global advocate for those affiliated with the travel industry.

Hotel Front Office Training Manual with 231 SOP - Written by Hotelier Tanji, this book is a resource of hotel reservation and management training tutorials, lectures, and other information.

Hotel Front Office: A Training Manual - Author Sudhir Andrews wrote this manual for anyone looking to understand the important essentials needed to succeed in the hospitality industry.

Career Advice on Becoming a Reservations Manager - Gain valuable insight on how to become a hotel reservations manager from an industry insider.

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Hotel Reservation Agent Resume FAQ

What should I put on my resume for a hotel reservation agent?

A job-winning hotel reservation agent resume highlights exceptional customer service and knowledge of room reservation technology. Additionally, this fast-paced job requires multitasking abilities and a friendly personality.

Open your resume with a summary or resume objective. Use this opportunity to speak of your qualifications and career moves. Describe your goals and how they can contribute to the hotel reservations agent position.

Then add your top achievements in your experience section. Opt for three bulleted highlights to describe your previous jobs. Use metrics and numbers to highlight how many guests you would check-in and check out on a daily basis. Showcase concierge activities and the distinguishable customer service you provided.

For less experienced job seekers, shift the focus from your short work history to your skills and volunteer work that relates to the job description in a functional resume format. Show off your knowledge in planning and booking reservations for the hotel as well as sending booking confirmation to guests after processing payments.

What is the role of a hotel reservation specialist?

Also known as reservationists or reservation agents, they are the face of hotels as they are the first point of contact when booking reservations and check-ins.

Their roles and responsibilities may include reserving hotel rooms and liaising with housekeeping representatives to ensure room availability and accuracy. They also assist guests with restaurant reservations and tourist attractions.

They strive to provide excellent customer service skills. Additionally, they are ready to contribute to the hotel’s budget by upselling rooms, suits and VIP experiences.

What are the 3 types of reservations?

There are different types of reservations, depending on the time and payment options. Here’s a quick breakdown of the most popular types of reservations:

  • Guaranteed Reservation: This type of reservation guarantees the room by blocking it in the system. This type of reservation provides a confirmation number, even without payment.
  • Advance Deposit: This reservation requires a deposit in advance in order to guarantee the reservation. The guests are not expected to pay in full prior to arrival.
  • Prepayment: This reservation type requires partial or full payment upon booking, depending on the hotel’s policy.

Keep this information handy, in case asked during your interview. To pass interview questions successfully and secure a great position in this field, check out our article about common interview questions for 2022 with pro tips to land the job.