Breakfast yes or no?

Should you include breakfast? What happens if I stop providing the breakfast? Table service, buffet or room delivery?

We have provided guest house / B&B management services for several owners and it’s surprising how guests don’t mind moving away from the traditional table service.

Table service usually takes 2 people, one to cook and the other to take the order and delivery the breakfast. This is a great time to interact with your guests, especially if you’re using self-check-in.

Whether to provide breakfast at your guest house depends on several factors, including your target market, the overall guest experience you want to offer, your budget, and the logistics involved. Here are some considerations to help you make an informed decision:

Guest Preferences: Consider the preferences of your target guests. Are they likely to expect breakfast as part of their stay? Some travellers, especially those on leisure trips, may appreciate the convenience of having breakfast provided, by do you really need cook to order (table service)?

Competitive Advantage: Offering breakfast can be a competitive advantage, especially if other accommodations in your area don’t provide it. It can make your guest house more appealing and set you apart from the competition.

Costs: Providing breakfast adds to your operating costs. You need to consider the expenses related to purchasing and preparing food, as well as staffing for meal service. Make sure to evaluate whether you can offer breakfast while still maintaining a profitable business. Think about a buffet to reduce staff costs, or give one of you a break. In our experience guests love a buffet, quality is important, mention the buthers on your table menu (meat supplied by…).

Time and Labor: Serving breakfast requires time and effort. You’ll need staff to prepare and serve the food, as well as clean up afterward. Consider whether you have the resources to handle this aspect efficiently.

Logistics: Think about the logistics of providing breakfast. Will you offer a buffet, a continental spread, cooked-to-order options, or baskets delivered to the rooms? We’ve done them all! Each approach has its challenges in terms of setup, cleanliness, and guest satisfaction, but in our experience table service is the hardest and most expensive.

Special Dietary Needs: Be prepared to accommodate various dietary restrictions and preferences, such as vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, or other special requests. This can increase the complexity and cost of providing breakfast.

Room Rates: You can factor the cost of breakfast into your room rates. This approach allows you to present an inclusive experience, making it easier for guests to budget for their stay.

Local Options: If there are plenty of affordable and appealing breakfast options nearby (e.g., cafes, restaurants), some guests may prefer to explore these local establishments. If there are local options, this will make not doing breakfast an easier decision to make. You could have some arrangement with the local cafe to provide a discount for your guests.

Breakfast Quality: If you choose to provide breakfast, ensure that the quality matches your overall guest experience. A well-prepared and delicious breakfast can leave a positive impression on guests.

Flexibility: If you decide not to provide breakfast, consider offering alternatives like a kitchenette or providing information about local breakfast spots.

Ultimately, the decision should align with your business goals, your target market’s preferences, and the resources you have available. If you choose to provide breakfast, make it a well-thought-out aspect of your guest experience. If not, focus on other ways to enhance your guests’ stay.