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Is It Worth It to Be Bilingual in the Hospitality Industry?

Make no mistake; if you bring more than one language as a job skill to the hospitality industry, it will make you more marketable. U.S. News & World Report says you can expect to receive 10 to 15 percent more pay if you know more than one language. This fact holds true whether the job is at the top in the C-suite, in the kitchen or on the cleaning crew. Here are four more ways you can reap the benefits of being bilingual in the hospitality field.

Spanish, Mandarin or Anything Else

Learning Chinese or Spanish languages are some of the most in-demand today, according to the U.S. News & World Report article. But the Eton Institute says French, Arabic, German, and Japanese are also widely used by travelers to the United States.

One benefit of learning any of these languages is it opens the job market in the hospitality field. The industry is known for allowing workers to travel, whether it’s a cruise line or a chain of resorts. But the door opener to winning these lucrative and exciting roles is having the ability to speak multiple languages.

Generally, these skills open the market, giving you more opportunities to a wider range of positions. It may help qualify you for a higher-end position that is only open to bilingual candidates.

Your language skills and multiculturalism will be extremely attractive to the best hotels and restaurants because they often project a global sophistication that your skills will only reinforce. Language skills are in demand because it helps these facilities be more culturally appropriate and responsive to their guests from all over the world. This affects the company’s bottom line and gives you more power when negotiating for a position.

Ironically, in Europe, it’s standard that students learn a foreign language in school. Pew Research says, “Studying a second foreign language for at least one year is compulsory in more than 20 European countries.” The research suggests that by age nine, European students learn one foreign language. Then most of them pick up a second language, in addition to their native tongue, later on.

Unfortunately, in the United States, foreign language study isn’t mandatory. This is exactly why bilingual job candidates are so important in the hospitality industry. When a hotel chain or other business has a steady stream of foreign visitors, your ability to communicate with these guests is extremely important.

Learn a Language – Get a Better Job

A 2017 report showed the demand for bilingual talent has more than doubled in the past five years. This is good news for bilingual hospitality workers, who are now more highly in demand than ever.

At Gecko Hospitality, we help candidates find the best roles to match their skills. If you are interested in an exciting role in the hospitality field, and have second-language skills, we can help negotiate the best packages to benefit both you and the employer. We specialize in speaking your language – no matter what it is. Contact our expert hospitality recruiters today!
Gecko Hospitality


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