The two letters B&B have long become a fixture in the hotel, gastronomy, and tourism sectors. As an abbreviation for Bed & Breakfast, they stand for a special form of accommodation that is particularly popular throughout Europe. This article reveals what is hidden in detail and what is necessary as the basic equipment to get started with your own B&B.
This is what makes a B&B so special
In the literal translation, behind the two letters is the combination of a bed and breakfast. So that’s what vacationers want: a place to sleep and have breakfast. Right, this combination can also be found in the price lists of many hotels, but a B&B is far from the hotel flair. A B&B is much more private. The room is not infrequently located in a private building and the sanitary facilities do not necessarily have to belong exclusively to a room, but can also be available for shared use.
And it is precisely this point that makes a B&B a popular starting point in the hotel industry. Anyone who can easily imagine accommodating overnight guests, preparing their room for them, and preparing breakfast for them has the right attitude to make a career as a B&B operator. As a rule, the space available in a B&B is manageable, which offers the advantage of being able to slowly grow into the hotel industry without having to prepare hundreds of rooms and serve hundreds of guests. That would be the case if the dream of your own hotel is to be put into practice.
Operators of a B & B mostly save employees. You act as landlord and host in personal union and thus cover all partial services for which different departments are responsible in a large hotel: receptionist, housekeeper, breakfast lady. The owner of a B & B covers all these functions himself and it is precisely through this fact that he gets to know the entire area of hotel life.
This is necessary for the opening of a B&B
There are a few, very basic things that are needed to start a B&B:
The available space
If you want to see yourself as a B&B owner, you need space. Space for overnight guests and space to serve breakfast. The establishment of a B & B in an owner-occupied apartment building is practical and economically interesting. In this way, the long-term or only temporarily unused space can be used sensibly – including a few groschens of earnings on top. An empty building could also be converted. If you don’t have space to set up a breakfast room, you can simply serve the breakfast part in your room. However, this is only possible if there is enough space as well as a table and chair to be able to place the tray with breakfast.
Anyone who offers bed & breakfast makes money with it. Therefore, it is also necessary to take care of basic tax law matters. And that means: Setting up a business account to run the finances of the B&B is a good tip that should be heeded in any case. A business account comparison, which can be carried out online, helps to find the right account model. In terms of tax law, these factors must be taken into account:
- Income tax and sales tax. The income from the B&B rental must be declared on the income tax return. If the income exceeds the limit of 17,500 euros per year, the B&B operator is subject to sales tax.
- Business start-up and business tax. In principle, the registration of a business is necessary to be able to offer Bed & Breakfast at all. If you earn more than 24,500 euros a year, the so-called trade tax applies.
Even if it sounds temptingly simple to open a B&B, the idea is no longer new. The competition has meanwhile become correspondingly great. Competition does not necessarily have to be a deterrent; in the best-case scenario, it is motivating to work out a unique selling point as a B&B operator. But what could that be? There are hardly any limits to your own creativity.
A unique selling point could, for example, be the location and the offer of the B&B. Anyone who offers their guests to spend the night in an old hayloft and serves a freshly prepared farmer’s breakfast in the morning creates a certain character. Certainly, no business people will come to visit here, but people who have made a conscious decision in favor of a natural atmosphere. Anyone who offers a special form of accommodation must express this in words and pictures to motivate the right clientele to book.
It can also be a smart idea for a B&B operator to offer a small city tour on top. The guest not only benefits from accommodation with a private flair but also gets culturally, historically, or culinary interesting things from the city of the B&B directly on top. In large cities, in particular, more and more visitors are looking for individually designed city tours where small, fine details count instead of the sights that can be found in every book.