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What Does a Hotel Porter Do?

A hotel porter acts much like a bellman at some hotels, including taking guests' luggage to their rooms.
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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 16 April 2014
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A hotel porter is a hospitality professional who ensures that guests of a hotel receive services which make their stays more enjoyable. The precise duties of a hotel porter vary, depending on the hotel and the region of the world the porter works in. In all cases, the focus of the job is on providing customer service and keeping guests as contented as possible so that they will be more likely to return in the future.

In large hotels, hotel porters may work primarily outside the hotel, with bellmen working inside the hotel. An outside hotel porter collects the luggage of patrons when they arrive and ensures that it is delivered to their rooms. When the patrons are ready to leave, the porter collects the luggage and loads it so that it is ready to go. Hotel porters may also run errands on behalf of guests, such as picking up theater tickets, dropping off and collecting dry cleaning, calling cabs, and similar tasks.

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In smaller hotels, porters may also work as bellmen, in which case in addition to handling luggage outside, they also show guests to their rooms, demonstrate the features of the room to guests, and act as a point of contact for guests who need assistance. Bellmen report any problems with the room to maintenance personnel, and may assist patrons with changing rooms if their rooms are unusable for some reason, and they also run errands for guests, make reservations at local restaurants and entertainment venues for their guests, answer questions, provide recommendations for regional attractions, and assist in emergencies.

In an emergency, a hotel porter helps guests evacuate safely, and assists with the implementation of safety plans. Porters can also assist staff members of the hotel with tasks such as moving furniture, organizing rooms, and managing guest needs. In a hotel which lacks a doorman, hotel porters hold the door open for guests in addition to managing their luggage.

This type of work is highly demanding. A hotel porter must be courteous, professional, friendly, and outgoing at all times, and he or she needs to be able to work long shifts. A hotel porter may work eight hours without a chance to sit down, and no matter how uncomfortable a porter is, he or she still responds to guests with a smile. Porters may also have to perform a wide variety of errands, some of which may seem unreasonable, without complaint. Rates of compensation for porters tend to be low, unless they are in a large hotel in which porters are ranked, with an opportunity to advance to a higher pay scale. However, porters can anticipate tips for good service.

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Discuss this Article

anon349393
Post 7

Working as a porter stinks. You get paid crap and work long hours. You get treated like crap and are looked down by other employees in your casino. Don't take this job.

anon339746
Post 6

To be a porter is a difficult job because you work for long hours and the pay is not good.

anon327412
Post 5

I've worked as a hotel porter for few months it wasn't that easy after all. Well, the employer was a bit crazy, and the salary is same as any other individual at hotel, so it's not really a dream career.

I got promoted to a better career and I am getting twice as much as a porter. Well, it was interesting to meet all the new people, but probably the hotel was a bit too big.

sapphire12
Post 3

I think working in a hotel at any job could be really interesting, sort of like working in a restaurant or a department store. It would be difficult, probably, but you'd learn a lot of skills. For one thing, anyone who has worked in retail or hospitality has a level of respect for people in these jobs that you just don't have until you do it yourself.

recapitulate
Post 2

A hotel porter job is certainly not easy or really well-paying, but I know people who say it is a great way to meet different types of people. Especially if you work in a big city, you might meet people from all over the world -- imagine the possible networking opportunities, if you are good at your job.

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