Sunday, July 15, 2012

Learning Hospitality

Last night, my daughter showed me a school waiver for their 1st semester tour.  There were 3 options stated:  Singapore, Hongkong-Macau, and Boracay.  This is part of their hospitality immersion for graduating students.  

I was already made aware of this tour a week ago by my wife and was actually anticipating how much it would cost.  I do have a contingency fund for this sort of thing given that the past couple of semesters there would almost always have a tour of some sort.  They've gone to Boracay, Iloilo, Palawan,  Ilocos, and some overnighters in a couple of hotels.  

The Boracay option is well within my contingency fund but the other two is like "Whoa!"  It's as if I'm enrolling for another semester all together!  The Hongkong-Macau trip is at Php 25,000 and the Singapore trip is a staggering Php 35,000!  Holy Momma!  That's definitely going to hurt the family coffers!  And then I thought about it some more...what if there's really a value to this trip?  I guess that's another thing to consider.  If there is truly something worthwhile that my daughter will learn in this trip, then I guess I have no choice.  But if this will only mean an experience of going outside of the country see Disneyland, Universal Studios, or play in the casinos---it's a total waste of hard earned money!

What is HOSPITALITY all about, really?

According to Mr. Wikipedia,  "Hospitality is the relationship between guest and host, or the act or practice of being hospitable. Specifically, this includes the reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers, resorts, membership clubs, conventions, attractions, special events, and other services for travelers and tourists."

Hospitality is all around us.  It is all about service and the quality by which it is delivered is where hospitality comes in.  "At Home Ako sa Jollibee" is an example of a hospitality campaign slogan.  However, it remains to be a slogan until those who will provide the service will be able to translate it into an actual customer experience.  So where does all this fit in with the curriculum of Trinity University of Asia's Hospitality and Tourism Management?  According to the university website, the following are the objectives of the Hospitality and Tourism Management:
  • Continuously develop a competency-based curriculum as strong foundation for effective instruction.
  • Provide faculty members who are qualified and competent, committed to help develop students who are globally competitive.
  • Inculcate among students the Christian values that will serve as tools in their personal development.
  • Take active part in the country’s development, particularly, the Tourism industry or its allied fields through the development of strong manpower resources.
To provide a globally competitive manpower resource.  I guess this is where the reasoning behind the international trip.  However, what can be learned from 3 days and two nights abroad that you cannot learn domestically?  Service is generic.  What differentiates it is how establishments translate this into an experience worth coming back to.  

Filipinos are noted to be a hospitable people.  This is why many service oriented companies abroad like hiring Filipinos.  Aside from being industrious we can't help but make customers feel at home.  I guess we're already globally competitive after all.

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