Sales & Revenue

How to Boost Hotel F&B Revenue with Prepayments and Upsells

a photo of Sevenrooms


5 min read

Jul 17, 2023

How to Boost Hotel F&B Revenue with Prepayments and Upsells

In the competitive landscape of the hotel industry, finding innovative ways to boost revenue and enhance the guest experience is paramount. 

One of the most effective strategies is positioning your hotel’s F&B concepts as must-visit dining destinations. Long gone are the days of relying on continental breakfasts and bar snacks. Today’s guests want authentic, well-executed culinary experiences — and if your hotel doesn’t offer that, they’ll find it elsewhere. 

By satisfying guests’ hunger for exceptional dining experiences, hotels can leverage this momentum to implement revenue-generating techniques such as prepayments and upselling.

In this article we’ll explore six practical ways to maximize hotel F&B revenue through upsells and prepayments to help you turn your venues into money-making dining destinations.  

1. Offer Chef’s Tasting Menus

If your chef has a reputation for excellence, many guests will jump at the opportunity to enjoy a meal they designed and curated. In general, these dining experiences require a lot of time to plan — and a lot of time for guests to savor. So, it’s usually a good idea to require advanced bookings for tasting menus.

For example, The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas’ é by renowned chef, Jose Andrés, offers guests an exclusive tasting menu of Spanish avant-garde dishes. With only two seatings a night, advanced bookings are required.

jose andres hotel F&B example

2. Invite Locals and Travelers to Celebrate 

Many of life’s greatest moments are celebrated in hotels. Honeymoons, anniversaries and birthdays can lead people to book one of your rooms — why not help them make their stay even more special with a dining experience they’ll never forget?

At booking, advertise a celebratory champagne greeting at your hotel’s restaurant or lounge, or allow them to request a chilled bottle of bubbly in their room upon arrival. 

Promote your restaurant as the perfect place to celebrate by offering enhancements such as birthday cakes, flowers and bottles of wine to be pre-ordered during the booking process. This offers guests the opportunity to easily surprise their partner or special guest.

The Ritz Restaurant located in the Ritz London offers a host of delicious celebration cakes directly on their reservation widget. Guests can pre-order the cakes with a 48-hour notice. In the reservation notes the guest has the opportunity to add details about the event and any additional requests to make this visit extra special.

The Ritz full-service hotel restaurant cake orders

3. Take Advantage of the Seasons with Holiday Packages & Delights

When people book a hotel room on Valentine’s Day, New Year’s Eve, Christmas, etc., they usually want a special meal or experience to help commemorate the holiday. Festive occasions are an excellent opportunity to upsell and add seasonal appeal to your venues. 

For example, the Lobby Lounge at Marquis Queen’s Park Marriott Hotel in Bangkok invites guests to experience the beauty of the summer season through an exclusive Floral Afternoon Tea experience in their flower garden. This offering is a great way to encourage locals and tourists to enjoy their hotel beyond dinner and drinks.

hotel guests can enjoy Floral Afternoon Tea

4. Give Guests the Option of Exclusive, Prix-Fixe Menus

If you want to maximize the profit potential of every chair in your restaurant or bar, a great way to encourage guest spend is to allow them to book exclusive, prix-fixe meals in advance. This way, you can increase check averages and more accurately plan each service while offering guests an elevated experience. Promote your prix-fixe meals on your website, social media channels and your booking widget. 

Referring back to The Ritz Restaurant in London, guests have the option of booking the Arts de La Table Menu. The menu showcases Executive Chef John Williams’ MBE signature dishes which guests can book to experience for £150 per person. 

hospitality industry Arts La Table Menu

FYI: You can reduce no-shows substantially by collecting a refundable deposit for reservations (or by collecting payment ahead of time). Just be sure to make your cancellation policy extremely clear in the booking process. 

5. Upsell Bottles of Wine and Wine Pairings

Profit margins are high on wine, and suggesting a bottle of wine instead of individual glasses is one of the easiest upsell methods in the book. Not only will you boost beverage sales, but guests often understand that a bottle is a better value for their money, too. Everybody wins!

You can also train your waitstaff to suggest a wine pairing option to accompany prix-fixe meals and tasting menus. Better yet, tap into your guest’s order history, and suggest an entree that pairs with their favorite wine!

Pro Tip: Leveraging an integrated restaurant CRM gives your staff a single source to manage guest notes and order history through robust guest profiles. A CRM solution such as SevenRooms can turn the challenge of upselling into a bespoke dining experience.  

6. Host a Memorable Event & Make Purchasing (and Upgrading) Tickets Easy 

If you offer any type of ticketed event (parties, DJ sets, guest speakers, pop-ups, collaborations, etc.), giving guests an easy way to upgrade to a better seat or VIP package can help boost revenue. The power of suggestion is important here, so you need to prompt guests to upgrade wherever they purchase tickets. 

The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas advertises spots for events at its poolside bar, Boulevard, on its website. Guests can reserve spots for events like “Dive In Movies,” and sunset cocktail hours. For Dive In Movies, guests have the option to upgrade their visit by booking cabanas and daybeds directly on the event page.  

hotel revenue example at The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas

Bottom Line: Reservations Are the Key to Driving Hotel F&B Revenue

Generating hotel food and beverage revenue starts before guests even walk through your doors. SevenRooms’ direct, white-labeled booking widget lets you promote special offers, add-ons and packages — complete with detailed descriptions and pictures. 

As you begin to market your food and beverage policies as destination sites, you might find reservations become harder for guests to get. (This is a good thing for you, but you’ll need to ensure the overall guest experience doesn’t suffer.) SevenRooms is designed to work for hotels with multiple on-site dining options and multiple properties, which means that it can direct your guests to book seats in other locations on your property as your most popular spots fill up.

To learn how SevenRooms can help maximize your revenue and turn your dining program into a destination, book a demo today

Hotel F&B FAQs

What are F&B Profit Margins for Hotels?

As of 2022, the average profit margins for hotel F&B departments was 27.7% according to a study by CBRE.

How Can I Increase My F&B Revenue? 

Increasing each guest’s average spend with upsells, implementing a strategic cancellation policy and ensuring your F&B outlets are an integral element of your marketing strategy are great ways to increase revenue. 

What Percentage of Total Revenue Usually Comes From F&B Sales? 

F&B sales usually account for between 10% and 20% of total revenue

Share this Post