Background and training are required and vary by management title and duties involved. Hotel managers are generally required to work long shifts that include late hours, weekends, and holidays due to the 24 hour operation of a hotel. The hotel industry is great for individuals who like working in a fast-paced environment with high levels of interaction with guests, employees, investors and the management team.

A special thank you to Joanne Odes for participating in this interview.

What is your current position?
I am the marketing and e-commerce manager at the Inbal Hotel in Jerusalem.

How did you find your job?
After I finished school, I took a job as sales secretary and worked my way up. At the Inbal, a large percentage of the staff works their way up.

What degree or experience should someone making Aliyah come with, in order to break into your field?
There is no minimum degree necessary. You get a lot of on-the-job training. It is good to have experience working at other hotels. A lot of people study hotel management both here and abroad. If you have experience abroad, it might be more impressive.

How important is Hebrew in your field?
I would say that Hebrew is essential, unless you wish to work in a hotel in East Jerusalem. A large percentage of calls are in Hebrew for there is a great deal of contact with local agents. Another reason that Hebrew is important is because the staff communicate in Hebrew.

What are the benefits of working in the hotel industry?
It depends where you work. For example, international chains give employees discounts at their hotels throughout the country. In addition, most hotel employees receive a hot meal every day. Many hotels also have subsidized Tiyulim (trips) to places like Eilat.

What is the salary range?
Managers earn at least 7-8,000 shekels a month.

Who are the major employers in your field?
The major employers are mainly hotel chains. Every city has a hotel association, and you can contact them and ask them to pass on your resume to hotels in the city.

What recommendations can you offer Olim interested in working in this field?
Three recommendations:

  1. Keep expectations realistic as far as pay.
  2. It is important to know Hebrew.
  3. Get as much experience abroad as possible.

Any advice for students considering the field?
It is a wonderful industry, however, the tourism trade is affected by everything that happens both in the world as a whole and in Israel specifically. Sometimes the hotels are full and everyone has much work, and sometimes things are very quiet and things are tough. In addition, as hotels are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, it is important to realize that for religious people this is sometimes a challenge.

Other advice?
Think positive. The nice thing about hotels is that they are service orientated and as someone coming from abroad you will probably have a lot to give to the hotel/organization.

How can we help your Aliyah?