Bed & Breakfast Management

Study bed & breakfast management online. Learn how to set up and manage a bed & breakfast or guesthouse. This course covers facilities, decor, equipment, customer service, supplying meals, financial management, marketing, and more.

Course Code: BTR203
Fee Code: S2
Duration (approx) Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment
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Learn how to get started with your own B&B or guesthouse. In this course, you'll study the practical side of management, customer services, set up, and more.

Working with our industry experts, you'll learn about:

  • facilities management
  • the importance of decoration and style
  • equipment
  • customer service
  • meal supplying and purchasing
  • financial management
  • general marketing

This course is an excellent starting point for people new to hospitality, or for extending into running your own business. 

Lesson Structure

There are 7 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction to Management & Marketing
    • Introduction
    • Basic Principles of Management
    • Four Main Steps in Management
    • Planning, Leading, Organising, Controlling
    • Economic View of Management
    • Behavioural View of Management
    • The Stakeholder Theory
    • Understanding policies
    • Marketing -Feasibility Research
    • Advertising Steps to Follow
    • Purpose of Advertising
    • Advertising through media, by personal contact
  2. Facilities and Decor
    • General layout - Reception, Dining area, Food Production
    • Equipment - essential equipment, selection criteria
    • Equipment Inventory
    • Reception, Storage (Dry store, Vegetable store, Refrigeration, Storage temperatures_
    • Food Preparation - vegetables, salad, meat, fish, pastry
    • Parking
    • Telephones, Communication and Technology - utilities
    • Cleaning - outside the building, reception, lounge, bedrooms, bathrooms, corridors, kitchens
  3. Customer Service
    • Personnel and service.
    • Division of Duties
    • Importance of Customer service.
    • Customer Service Skills - waiting, carrying things,
    • Interpersonal Skills - addressing customers, records
    • Staff Recruitment, Interviewing, Training and Induction.
    • Controlling Staff -leadership, Giving Orders / orders not correctly carried out
    • Procedures for dealing with orders not carried out correctly.
    • Bedroom service.
  4. Equipment
    • Principles of design.
    • Service Facilities
    • Cleaning/ Cleansing
    • Waste Disposal
    • Toilet & Bathroom Facilities
    • Safety Risk analysis.
    • Safety audit.
    • Using audit forms and checklists.
    • Signs for communication danger
    • Materials control
    • Maintenance control - useful checks
  5. Supplying Meals
    • Breakfast timings.
    • What to serve (continental or full cooked breakfast).
    • Coffee - blends, grinding, troubleshooting, coffee variations
    • Teas- specialty teas, herbal teas, storing, brewing
    • Presentation of food & beverage
    • Dealing with special requirements -breakfast in room, children, vegans / vegetarians, etc
    • Serving other meals and snacks.
    • Organising "experience" meals
    • Dealing with customer complaints
  6. Food Purchasing
    • Effective purchasing
    • Planning ahead
    • Role of the purchaser
    • Supplier Selection
    • Bulk buying
    • Other Purchasing Approaches - contract, day to day, commissary, tenders, etc
    • Know about following regulations (know the legalities and alcohol licensing).
  7. Records and Financial Management
    • Management of guesthouse records.
    • Reservations procedures.
    • Cancellation procedure.
    • The control of accounts.
    • Methods of payment.
    • Safe deposits.
    • Liabilities.
    • Productivity.
    • Financial records management.
    • Insurance.
    • Taxation.
    • Financial control.

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.


  • Identify the scope and nature of skills required for successful bed and breakfast or guesthouse management.
  • Discuss the provision and management of facilities and décor in a guesthouse or B & B.
  • Discuss the provision and management of equipment in a guesthouse or B & B.
  • Discuss the provision and management of meals in a guesthouse or B & B.
  • Determine the management of financial and other records in a guesthouse or B & B.
  • Determine the various procedures for seeking competitive prices on specified equipment.


A bed and breakfast is generally a private house offering accommodation and breakfast in a package deal.
A guest house is a private house that may be offering paid accommodation only.

These are very general definitions, and could relate to any size of accommodation, and any standard of facility or service.

In Britain, guest houses have become most commonly equated with seaside accommodation. In South Africa guest houses are generally found in tourist areas. In Australia, guesthouses are often larger facilities, and bed and breakfast operations are smaller.

This course is relevant to any form of house or home type accommodation provided primarily for tourists. This is distinctly different to hotel accommodation which is not in a "home style" setting.

Guesthouses and B & B's do not have the hustle & bustle of hotels. They are able to provide a simpler form of accommodation, catering to smaller numbers of guests, and providing a more informal or even personal interaction between guests and staff/owners.
Standards Must Be High
Keeping the establishment clean in all respects is essential, not only because of health regulations, but also because of appearance/presentation.
Outside the Building
The paintwork should look clean and fresh and all maintenance should be complete. There is nothing worse than a newly arriving guest seeing paint flaking off pipes, gutters or window frames. If a gate is fitted at the entry, it should new, painted and in workable condition. Drives and paths at the entry should be clean and free of leaves. Remember if a guest has an accident on a path, the owner is liable. Any lawns should be kept neat, and garden beds should be presentable and weed free.
This is the first area seen inside the building; and as such should be clean and attractive. Vacuum the carpets at least once a day. Keep all counters and fittings free of dust. Give attention to light fittings that have a great attraction for dust.
This is an area that must be kept clean, but cleaning when the guests are not present is important. As most of the visitors to a guest house are on the move and outdoors by 10.00 am; late morning is usually a good time to clean. Carpets and lounge chairs here must be vacuumed, all fittings, tables etc. dusted/wiped over, and left in a presentable state.
It is normal to allow guests until 10.00 am, to have breakfast, and be out of their rooms. After this time cleaning staff may enter the bedrooms, their duties being:
  • Make beds and change bed linen if necessary
  • Empty the waste paper basket
  • Cear away any crockery/dirty dishes left from room service.
  • Vacuum the carpets
  • Dust any fittings and cupboards
  • Check and dust the curtains
  • Check that all lights are functioning.

These should be checked twice per day and the following done:
  • Clean the floor and all toilet fittings
  • Make sure that enough toilet rolls are available
  • Empty all bins (including sanitary)
  • Replenish soap and change towels if necessary  

Vacuum these daily and check all carpets to avoid loose sections that could be the cause of accidents. Also, check to see that all fire extinguishers are in their place and in working condition.
Dining Rooms
These should always be neat when the guests arrive for meals. The floor should be sanitary and the tables should be clean and ready for the guest to proceed with their meal.
The cleaning of kitchens is generally the responsibility of kitchen staff. All cooking equipment must be cleaned immediately after use, and put away in proper positions. This is not only important to hygiene, but also the efficiency of kitchen operations.

Member of Study Gold Coast Education Network.
Member of Study Gold Coast Education Network.
ACS Global Partner - Affiliated with colleges in seven countries around the world.
ACS Global Partner - Affiliated with colleges in seven countries around the world.
Since 1999 ACS has been a recognised member of IARC (International Approval and Registration Centre). A non-profit quality management organisation servicing education.
Since 1999 ACS has been a recognised member of IARC (International Approval and Registration Centre). A non-profit quality management organisation servicing education.
UK Register of Learning Providers, UK PRN10000112
UK Register of Learning Providers, UK PRN10000112

How can I start this course?

You can enrol at anytime and start the course when you are ready. Enrolments are accepted all year - students can commence study at any time. All study is self paced and ACS does not set assignment deadlines.

Please note that if a student is being assisted by someone else (e.g. an employer or government subsidy), the body offering the assistance may set deadlines. Students in such situations are advised to check with their sponsor prior to enrolling. The nominal duration of a course is approximately how long a course takes to complete. A course with a nominal duration of 100 hours is expected to take roughly 100 hours of study time to complete. However, this will vary from student to student. Short courses (eg. 100 hrs duration) should be completed within 12 months of enrolment. Certificates, Advanced Certificates and Awards (eg. over 500 hours duration) would normally be completed within 3 -5 years of enrolment. Additional fees may apply if a student requires an extended period to complete.
If a student cannot submit their assignments for 6 months to ACS, they should advise the school to avoid cancellation of their student
registration. Recommencement fees may apply.

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What do I need to know before I enrol?

There are no entry requirements that you need to meet to enrol in our courses, our courses are for everyone.
If you are under 18, we need written permission from your parent/ guardian for your enrolment to continue, we can arrange that after you have enrolled.

You don’t need to purchase any additional resources to complete our courses.

We aim to teach you the essentials without you having to purchase any specific computer program.
We recommend that you have access to a word processing program, such as Microsoft Word or Google Docs, so that you can easily complete and submit your assignments.

You sure can. We are here to help you learn whatever your abilities.

Yes, if you are enrolling in a Certificate or Advanced Certificate, you might be eligible for credits if you have evidence of your previous studies or relevant experience. More information is here.

We recommend that you are able to browse websites, send emails and conduct online research. You will need to be able to type and submit your assignments.
If you have limited computer skills, we can make special arrangements for you.

This is possible, it depends on the institution. We recommend that if you would like to use our courses that you contact the institution first. Our Course Handbook is a good resource for this.

Our courses are written in English and we only have English speaking academic staff. If you can read and complete your assignments in English, our courses are ideal for you.

Our courses are designed to build knowledge, hands on skills and industry connections to help prepare you to work in the area, running your own business, professional development or as a base for further study.

This course has been designed to cover the fundamentals of the topic. It will take around 100 hours to complete, which includes your course reading, assignment work, research, practical tasks, watching videos and anything else that is contained in the course. Our short courses are a great way to do some professional development or to learn a new skill.

It’s up to you. The study hours listed in the course are a rough guide, however if you were to study a short course (100 hours) at 10 hours per week, you could finish the course in 10 weeks (just an example). Our courses are self-paced, so you can work through the courses in your own time. We recommend that you wait for your tutor to mark and return your assignment before your start your next one, so you get the benefits of their feedback.

The course consists of course notes, videos, set tasks for your practical work, online quizzes, an assignment for each lesson (that you receive feedback from your tutor from) and ends in an exam (which is optional, if would like to receive the formal award at the end), using our custom built Learning Management System - Login.Training.

Our courses are designed for adults to gain professional development and skills to further their careers and start businesses.

Our custom online learning portal allows you to conduct your learning online. There may be practical tasks that you can do offline. You have the option of downloading your course notes or print them to read later.

There is also the option to pay an additional fee for printed course notes and or USB (availability limited to location and deliverability).

Yes, if you don’t have access to the internet, you can receive the course as paper notes or on a USB stick for an additional fee. We can also make alternative arrangements for you to send your assignments to us.

We offer printed notes for an additional fee. Also, you can request your course notes on a USB stick for an additional fee.

Yes, your tutor is here to help you. Simply post any questions you have in your portal or contact the office and we can pass on a message to your tutor.

We are more learning focussed, rather than assessment focussed. You have online quizzes to test your learning, written assignments and can complete an exam at the end of the course (if you want to receive your certificate). You will not receive a pass/ fail on your course work. If you need to add more details on your assignment, we will ask you to resubmit and direct you where you need to focus. If you need help, you can ask your tutor for advice in the student room.

Each module (short course) is completed with one exam.

Exams are optional, however you must sit an exam if you would like to receive a formal award. You will need to find someone who can supervise that you are sitting the exams under exams conditions. There is an additional cost of $60 incl. GST for each exam.
More information is here

There are practical components built into the course that have been designed to be achieved by anyone, anywhere. If you are unable to complete a task for any reason, you can ask your tutor for an alternative.

When you complete the course work and the exam and you will be able receive your course certificate- a Statement of Attainment. Otherwise, you can receive a Letter of Completion.

You can bundle the short courses to create your own customised learning bundle, Certificates or Advanced Certificates. More information is on this page.

Yes, our courses are built to be applicable for people living anywhere in any situation. We provide the fundamentals, and each student can apply their own unique flair for their own interests, region and circumstances with the one-on-one guidance of a tutor. There is also a bit of student directed research involved.

Employers value candidates with industry skills, knowledge, practical skills and formal learning. Our courses arm you with all of these things to help prepare you for a job or start your own business. The longer you study the more you will learn.

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We are established and safe- we have been in education for over 40 years.
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Course Contributors

The following academics were involved in the development and/or updating of this course.

Lyn Quirk

M.Prof.Ed.; Adv.Dip.Compl.Med (Naturopathy); Adv.Dip.Sports Therapy
Over 30 years as Health Club Manager, Fitness Professional, Teacher, Coach and Business manager in health, fitness and leisure industries. As business owner and former department head for TAFE, she brings a wealth of skills and experience to her role as a tutor for ACS.

Martin Powdrill

25 years working in Telecommunications, IT, Organisational Development, and Energy Conservation & Efficiency, prior to setting up his own Permaculture consulting business. Martin has a Bsc (Hons) Applied Science (Resources Option), MSc Computer Studies, Permaculture Design Certificate.
Martin volunteers with many local environmental and community groups, and facilitates discussions on climate change, peak oil, and transition towns. Martin has an allotment, and is currently enrolled in the Scottish Mountain Bike Leader Award programme.
Martin’s goal as a catalyst for sustainable change brings together his strengths and experience in his environmental, project management, and business backgrounds.

Christine Todd

University lecturer, businesswoman, photographer, consultant and sustainability expert; with over 40 years industry experience
B.A., M.Plan.Prac., M.A.(Social).
An expert in planning, with years of practical experience in permaculture.

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