Host or Hostess Job Description: Top Duties and Requirements

A Hostess, or Host, works in the food and beverage industry welcoming guests to an establishment. Their duties include greeting customers upon their arrival, ushering these patrons to designated tables, and introducing them to their Server.

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Host duties and responsibilities

In order to be successful as a Host, candidates will have a variety of duties to complete. Their main responsibility will be greeting customers at the door as they arrive, but other duties to note include:

  • Let patrons know of wait times and contact them as a table becomes available
  • Take reservations over the phone, online platforms, or in-person
  • Maintain a clean, tidy, and welcoming front-of-house experience
  • Provide novelty gifts to children as they leave the restaurant, if included in the establishment’s operation
  • Seat guests at designated tables and take drink orders, if necessary
  • Answer questions about the food and beverage menu, as needed
  • Understand the needs of wait staff to ensure sections are not overcrowded
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Hostess Job Description Examples:


Example 1

At Bottega, we strive to offer the highest quality food, wine, and service. The Bottega team works diligently to provide a warm and welcoming ambiance, providing guests with a memorable dining experience. We are currently looking for a hostess who has a desire to create an enjoyable dining experience for guests. * Welcome guests in a warm and friendly manner. * Check QR codes at the door * Seats guests and manage reservations. * Monitors restaurant activity to determine seating and dining flow. * Responds to guest inquiries and requests in a timely, friendly, and efficient manner. * Assists others with side work including, but not limited to cleaning, stocking, folding silverware, etc. * Perform other duties as needed. * Strong multitasking skills * Ability to perform in a fast-paced environment * Ability to co-operate and work in a team * Excellent listening and communication skills * Excellent customer service skills * High school diploma * Bilingual French and English _SCHEDULE_ Must be available Friday and Saturday evenings. Job Type: Part-time Salary: $15.00 per hour Additional pay: * Tips Schedule: * Night shift * Weekend availability Work remotely: * No

What does a Host do?

Hosts are the friendly faces customers see as they enter the restaurant and must set a good first impression for the venue. A Host works closely with the wait staff and other members of the establishment to choose where guests are seated. They keep track of which tables need to be cleaned and cleared, and how much space is left in the restaurant for customers to dine.

Host skills and qualifications

In order to be a successful Host, candidates will have a variety of hard and soft skills. Some of these may include:

  • Flexible schedule for working weekends and evenings
  • Customer service skills
  • Organization skills for scheduling and booking reservations and tables
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Excellent problem-solving abilities
  • Knowledge of food and beverage health and safety initiatives
  • Teamwork and collaboration skills

Host experience requirements

Many candidates may not have direct Host experience, as it is an entry-level food and beverage role. However, some experience in customer service or the food and beverage industry is considered an asset. Some candidates may have previous Host experience from another restaurant, or may have another type of food and beverage customer service experience such as working at a fast food chain. Others may have been employed in a different industry such as retail or marketing in a similar role.

Host education and training requirements

A Host role may be appealing to high school students in higher grades or to post-secondary students who are working towards completing a program. With this, a candidate would either possess a high school or a post-secondary diploma or degree, or be working towards one. All candidates should be knowledgeable on basic computer software programs used in the establishment’s premises.

Host salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for a Host in Canada is $14.86 per hour. Wages will vary based on provincial regulations. It will also depend on the location of the restaurant, how upscale the dining experience is, and the experience of the candidate.

Job description samples for similar positions

If a Host job description sample is not what you are looking for, some other job description samples to review include:

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Host job description FAQs

What is the difference between a Host and a Food Server?

At a restaurant, a Host greets customers and does some of the administrative work in order to ensure they have a reservation and are seated at the correct table. A Food Server will then take over from the Host once guests are seated. The server will take their orders and serve them their meals. A Host will often then say goodbye to the customers as they leave the restaurant.

What qualities make a good Host?

A good Host will be kind, friendly, and able to handle unexpected situations. Some customers may be displeased with wait times or a full restaurant, and a Host will have to be comfortable communicating with these customers. It is important Hosts are able to work well with others while always having the best interests of their team members in mind. 

Who does a Host report to?

A Host will report to the Restaurant or Venue Manager depending on the type of establishment they work at. It is also possible they may report to a Front-Of-House Manager who oversees all Servers and Hosts at the restaurant. The Front-Of-House Manager would then report to the Restaurant Manager.

Who reports to a Host?

It is not often that a Host has people reporting directly to them. In some establishments, it is possible that there may be a senior-level Host who mentors and trains Junior Hosts, but they will likely all report to the same manager.

Job Description Examples

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