Can You Work at a Hotel at 16?

If you’re a teenager looking for a part-time job, you might be wondering if you can work at a hotel at 16. It’s a common question, and the answer depends on several factors.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Yes, you can work at a hotel at 16, but there are restrictions and limitations.

In this article, we’ll explore the rules and regulations for working at a hotel as a 16-year-old, the types of jobs you can do, and some tips for finding employment in the hospitality industry.

Legal Requirements for Working at a Hotel at 16

Child Labor Laws

If you’re 16 years old and considering working at a hotel, it’s important to understand the legal requirements that must be met before you can start. Child labor laws vary by state, but in general, if you’re under 18, you’ll need to obtain a work permit before you can start working. Work permits are typically issued by your school or the state’s labor department.

Work Hour Restrictions

Another important consideration when working at a hotel at 16 is the number of hours you’re legally allowed to work. According to federal law, 16-year-olds can work a maximum of 8 hours per day and 40 hours per week during the summer months. During the school year, however, the maximum number of hours you’re allowed to work drops to 3 hours per day and 18 hours per week. Some states have additional restrictions on the number of hours 16-year-olds can work, so it’s important to check local laws before accepting a job.

Job Restrictions

In addition to restrictions on work hours, there are also certain job restrictions that apply to 16-year-olds in the hotel industry. For example, you’re not allowed to work in certain hazardous jobs, such as operating heavy machinery or working with chemicals. Additionally, you may be limited in the types of tasks you can perform, such as handling money or working late at night.

It’s important to note that these restrictions are in place for your safety and protection, as well as to ensure compliance with child labor laws. If you’re unsure about whether a particular job is legal for 16-year-olds, check with your state’s labor department or consult with a legal professional.

Types of Jobs for 16-Year-Olds in a Hotel

Working at a hotel as a 16-year-old can be a great way to gain experience in the hospitality industry and earn some extra money. However, it’s important to know what types of jobs are available for someone your age. Here are some of the common job options for 16-year-olds in a hotel:

Front Desk Clerk

Front desk clerks are responsible for checking guests in and out of the hotel, answering questions, and providing information about the hotel and local area. This job requires excellent customer service skills, attention to detail, and the ability to work well under pressure. Some hotels may require front desk clerks to have previous experience or training, but many are willing to train new employees on the job.


Housekeeping is another common job for 16-year-olds in a hotel. This job involves cleaning and maintaining guest rooms and public areas of the hotel. Housekeepers must be able to work efficiently and pay close attention to detail to ensure that each room is clean and ready for new guests. This job can be physically demanding, as it often involves lifting and carrying heavy items like linens and cleaning supplies.

Food and Beverage

Food and beverage jobs in a hotel can include working in the hotel restaurant, bar, or banquet facilities. These jobs may involve preparing food and drinks, serving guests, and cleaning up after events. Some hotels may require food and beverage workers to have previous experience in the industry, but many are willing to train new employees on the job.


A concierge is responsible for assisting guests with a variety of needs, such as making restaurant reservations, booking tours, and providing recommendations for local attractions. This job requires excellent customer service skills, knowledge of the local area, and the ability to work well under pressure.

Bell Hop/Porter

A bell hop or porter is responsible for helping guests with their luggage, providing directions, and assisting with other tasks as needed. This job requires strong customer service skills and the ability to lift heavy items.

It’s important to note that some hotels may have age restrictions or other requirements for certain jobs. Be sure to check with the hotel’s human resources department or website for more information. Overall, working at a hotel can be a fun and rewarding experience for a 16-year-old looking to gain work experience and earn some extra money.

Tips for Finding Employment in the Hospitality Industry

If you are a teenager looking for employment, working at a hotel is a great option. Many hotels offer part-time and full-time positions to individuals who are 16 years and older. Here are some tips to help you find employment in the hospitality industry.

Research Hotels in Your Area

Start by researching hotels in your area. Look for hotels that are hiring and check their websites for job openings. You can also search job boards like or for job openings in the hospitality industry. Make a list of the hotels that interest you and the positions they are hiring for.

Network and Make Connections

Networking is an important part of finding a job in the hospitality industry. Reach out to family and friends who work in the industry and ask for advice or referrals. Attend hospitality industry events or job fairs in your area and make connections with professionals in the industry. You never know who might be able to help you find a job.

Create a Professional Resume and Cover Letter

Before applying for a job, create a professional resume and cover letter. Highlight any relevant experience you have, such as customer service or retail experience. Make sure your resume is well-organized and easy to read. Your cover letter should be tailored to the position you are applying for and explain why you are a good fit for the job.

Prepare for the Interview

Once you have applied for a job and have been invited for an interview, it’s important to prepare. Research the hotel and the position you are applying for. Practice common interview questions and think about how you would answer them. Dress professionally and arrive early for your interview.

Follow Up After the Interview

After your interview, follow up with the hiring manager. Send a thank-you email or letter to thank them for their time and express your continued interest in the position. This will show the hiring manager that you are serious about the job and help keep you top of mind.


Working at a hotel can be a great opportunity for 16-year-olds to gain work experience, earn money, and learn valuable skills. However, it’s important to be aware of the legal requirements and restrictions for working as a minor. By following the guidelines and tips outlined in this article, you can increase your chances of finding a job in the hospitality industry that’s both fulfilling and rewarding.

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