HOSPA, the Hospitality Professionals Association, is based in the UK and supports the senior tier of staff in the hospitality industry. A typical HOSPA member is involved in finance, revenue management, technology, asset management and marketing. These commercial directors and managers are responsible for driving their businesses forward.

Professional development is a key part of what HOSPA does, offering distance-learning courses in finance, revenue management and asset management. Soon it will also be offering its own short courses, enabling newly promoted managers to quickly brush up on their skills to deliver what’s expected of them with their new responsibilities. HOSPA membership provides a variety of benefits and perks. The exclusive members’ area of the website is packed with expertise, searchable UK and international articles from the online library EBSCO and other partners.

HOSPA proudly works with its members to share best practices, with support from members and sometimes sponsors. As part of this, HOSPA produces its own monthly publication for members, the Overview, which delivers the latest news affecting all hospitality professionals. With articles prepared by leading industry experts, the magazine provides a wealth of information to benefit all members. Guide books are produced by HOSPA and cover a range of topics, from tips and service charges to how to adhere to international accounting standards.

As a not-for-profit organisation, HOSPA relies on membership fees from hospitality operators. Industry sponsors’ investment enables the membership team to deliver events throughout the year. The highlight of the year is HOSPACE, HOSPA’s conference and exhibition – more of which is covered below.

After the outbreak of Covid-19 the focus switched from face-to-face meetings and events to webinars and the sharing of anecdotal guides on how to temporarily shut down a property; support key workers; keep technology ticking over; reopen; and adjust systems to the new normal, among others. The list was lengthy, but for the HOSPA team it was rewarding to play this new role as a hub of information.

Professional development

HOSPA offers a variety of both in-depth courses and one-day events, which are open to members and nonmembers. HOSPA professional development courses provide the skills and knowledge for those hospitality professionals seeking to excel in their careers in hospitality finance, revenue and asset management.

The courses are endorsed by the Institute of Hospitality, demonstrating that it adheres to good practice standards in training and training delivery, is relevant to the needs of the industry and meets a wide range of essential criteria relating to quality standards and quality learning outcomes.

With both introductory and advanced levels available, the modules have been specifically written for the hospitality sector by specialist educators and industry leaders, and reflect the need for learners to be continuing full-time work while studying. For instance, the finance management course programme is studied in three separate stages over 18 months, while the revenue management and asset management course programmes are offered in three separate levels, each taking five months to complete.

The programmes utilise contemporary terminology and professional examples, and are assessed through work-based projects, so its lessons can be applied directly to the workplace. In addition to the study packs, all learners log into HOSPA’s online learning space (HOSPA World of Learning) with access to subject matter experts, additional resources and EBSCO’s online library of academic and business journals, which are designed to help learners get the most from the courses. All courses are based on the best practice metrics and terms recommended by the Uniform System of Accounts for the Lodging Industry.


HOSPA members are key decision makers within the hospitality industry. HOSPA has members represented from all key hotel chains across the UK, various international chains and many higher-profile independent hotels. Its members span the whole hospitality industry, from restaurants, pubs and bars, to contract caterers for stadiums, meaning HOSPA can offer an audience of highly targeted industry specialists. HOSPA provides direct contact with these members through sponsorship opportunities via unrivalled networking, face-to-face engagement – when possible – targeted email marketing and social media. HOSPA sponsorship provides the opportunity to align brands with the most respected hospitality industry association, helping them to increase brand awareness, generate new sales and acquire new customers. Alongside its educational work and industry guidance, HOSPA works with major charities in the UK hospitality industry, including Hospitality Action, Springboard, Only a Pavement Away and Room To Reward to ensure it also gives back as part of its endeavours.

A hybrid conference for 2020

HOSPA’s flagship event, HOSPACE, will be a hybrid conference for 2020, mixing live talks with virtual technology. It is set to be held on 19 November, with the virtual software available for three days – 18–20 November 2020 inclusive. HOSPA will retain many of the features that have made HOSPACE such a success in previous years, while taking advantage of the new technology being used – to the benefit of operators and sponsors alike. This means that the live event will be held as usual at the Royal Lancaster London with socially distanced in-person attendees simultaneously broadcasting the content online for virtual attendees.

There is a consistent format, with plenary sessions, presentations and a live panel discussion after each keynote speech. Throughout the day, there will be workshops with online breakouts for those attending in-person and virtually.

One of the core strengths offered by HOSPACE is the opportunity for networking, but this has proved challenging in 2020. However, HOSPA plans to continue this as much as usual for both the live and virtual events by offering a networking lounge for virtual attendees with chat rooms, discussions and one-to-one meetings.

Through a dedicated networking page, HOSPA will conduct live video chats as well as text-based messaging with like-minded industry professionals. This can be ad hoc or scheduled throughout the event. In exchange for free attendance, operators will be scheduled to meet with a number of sponsors – selected by them in advance – during the conference.

In summary, if anyone is working in the hospitality industry or interested in what is happening in the UK hospitality scene, HOSPA is the organisation for them.