Restaurant Host

Job Description:

Restaurant hosts welcome and seat customers, and make sure the waiting service is running smoothly.

Job Category:
Tourism, Hospitality & Entertainment

What you will do:

Your day-to-day will include tasks such as:

  • Greet guests and seat them at tables or in waiting areas.
  • Provide guests with menus.
  • Assign patrons to tables suitable for their needs and according to rotation so that servers receive an appropriate number of seatings.
  • Order or requisition supplies and equipment for tables and serving stations.
  • Hire, train, and supervise food and beverage service staff. Inspect restrooms for cleanliness and availability of supplies and clean restrooms when necessary.
  • Perform marketing and advertising services.
  • Operate cash registers to accept payments for food and beverages.
  • Take and prepare to-go orders. Prepare staff work schedules.


You’ll need:

  • customer service skills
  • business management skills
  • knowledge of food production methods
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

As well as:

  • leadership skills
  • the ability to motivate and manage staff
  • the ability to work well with others (teamwork skills)
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

There are no set requirements, but you may need:

  • school leaver qualifications
  • work experience in a restaurant setting, for example as waiting or kitchen staff
  • an apprenticeship or internship in hospitality at a hotel or restaurant

You may choose to complete a higher education qualification—for example, a degree in a relevant subject like hospitality management—if you’re looking to work as a maitre d’ or front of house manager.

School Subjects

To become a Restaurant Host in the UK, specific GCSE subjects are not mandatory, but certain subjects can be beneficial in developing the skills and qualities required for this role, such as:

  1. English: Strong language and communication skills are essential for interacting with guests, taking reservations, and providing excellent customer service.
  2. Mathematics: Basic mathematical skills are useful for handling cash transactions, calculating bills, and managing table assignments.
  3. Business Studies: This subject can provide insights into customer service principles, hospitality management, and the business side of the restaurant industry.
  4. ICT (Information and Communication Technology): Knowledge of ICT can be beneficial for using reservation software and managing customer databases.
  5. Foreign Languages: Knowledge of foreign languages can be advantageous in establishments that cater to international guests.
  6. Citizenship or Personal, Social, Health, and Economic (PSHE) Education: These subjects can provide knowledge about customer interaction, cultural sensitivity, and communication skills.

Working Hours and Environment:

As a host, you might work in a variety of different restaurants, often in shift work. As a maitre d’, you’ll represent the front of house at a fine dining restaurant or in the restaurant of a high-end hotel.

You’ll have regular face-to-face conversations with staff and customers, and need to maintain a positive and professional persona.

You’ll be standing and/or moving around the restaurant for most of your shift.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience, you could become a restaurant manager. You could also apply for a role as a maitre’d, who works in a fine dining environment.