Know Your Jargons: 20 Terminologies Utilized in Hospitality

Over a period of time, every industry evolves its own language. From cuss words to anagrams to phrases to abbreviations, these often make work easier and quicker. Hotel industry or the hospitality industry too has its own language. Sample these: ADR, ARR, CRS, DDR, DND, ETA, and LOS.

You might know these. If you don’t, do not worry. You are not alone. This article has been written to introduce our hospitality brethren to some of these key words. Dealing with all abbreviations and phrases of the industry will need a book not a blog. Trust us.

So, without much ado, here are 20 abbreviations and phrases commonly used in the hospitality industry.

✯ Back of House

Area of the hotel that is generally off limits to guests. For example, kitchens, offices, storage etc.

✯ Advance Rates

Discounted rates to encourage customers to book in advance

✯ Boutique Hotels

Usually refers to luxury hotels that offer something unique in their service, amenities or room design.

✯ Corkage

Charge levied on beer, liquor, and wine brought into the hotel but purchased elsewhere. Such charges may also be applied to other products or services the hotel offers.

✯ Chatbot

Also known as a chatterbot, talkbot or artificial conversational entity, this is a service that simulates the behaviour of a human within a conversational environment.

✯ Day Guests

Guests that arrive and depart on the same day.

✯ Full Board

A special rate that includes bed, breakfast, lunch and, dinner.

✯ Fam Tour/Trip

Familiarisation tours or trips refers to complimentary stays organised for corporate guests who may be considering using the hotel for their organisation


Global Distribution System – Network of electronic reservation systems used globally by travel agents to book hotel rooms. Come of the commonly used GDS include Sabre, Galileo and Amadeus.

✯ Green Hotels

This phrase refers to hotels making an active effort to operate sustainably and reduce their environmental impact.

✯ Geo-Coding

The process of identifying a hotels location using geographic coordinates expressed in degrees of longitude and latitude.

✯ House Count

The total occupancy of the hotel at any given moment.


Short for Hotel Electronic Distribution Networking Association. Founded in 1991, HEDNA is an industry organisation dedicated to advance communication training, standards, procedures and technology for the sale of hotel accommodation through electronic systems.

✯ Lead Time

The time between when a booking is made and the actual stay. Generally, hotels prefer longer lead times so that they can prepare for the guests better.

✯ Meta-Search Engines

A search engine where different sites are consolidated so that offerings can be compared.

✯ Mystery Guest

A quality control measure wherein an undercover employee, usually from an external organisation, poses as a guest to evaluate the performance of the hotel.


Travel Agent’s Commission

✯ Snag List

Usually a list of problems/issues that need to be addressed.

✯ Room Inventory

The number of rooms available to be sold


Run of House – No room has been booked by guest before arrival, so they will get any room available.

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