For the aspiring bed and breakfast owner who wants to run their own B&B
bed and breakfast training course
With short lessons, done for you B&B documents, community support, all your B&B processes and a place to ask questions from successful B&B owners
HAVE YOU ...
been dreaming of running a bed and breakfast for a while? Are you Looking for a lifestyle that gives you more freedom and flexibility?
One that means you can escape the stress of the 9-5 or the shift work or the daily commute, live in your dream location, run your own business and be your own boss and spend more time with your family and friends...
you've been spending a lot of time on Google searching for "How to run a bed and breakfast"?
But you're not sure what questions you should be asking and would like the support of an experienced B&B owner and community?
Honestly I had to say that Karen Thorne’s Bed and Breakfast Academy course has been the single most important thing we have done to make our business a success"
Karen gives endless practical advice, built from years of running a beautiful B&B and also from her previous career in marketing. But she does this in a way that is not over-whelming; everything is presented in a way that feels manageable and encouraging. She really cares about the well-being of those she helps, and understands how daunting running your own hospitality business can be. So it really goes without saying, that I cannot recommend Karen and her courses more highly.
Caroline Howarth, The Mount Bed and Breakfast, Keswick
Introducing the Complete Step by Step Online Bed and Breakfast Course
In this online course, you'll...
- create a vision of your own ideal bed and breakfast
- become part of an amazing supportive B&B community
- get clear on how to improve your chances of owning a B&B you'll love running without making expensive mistakes
- learn the main legal requirements for running a B&B so that you stay on the right side of the law
- discover how much you can earn, how much to charge and how to take money from guests
- decide whether to get a star rating and how to use reviews to attract more guests
- find out how to set up a B&B that runs like clockwork, so that you reduce the chances of things going wrong
- discover how to prepare your bed and breakfast for your first guests
- learn everything there is to know about the day to day running of your bed and breakfast
- learn how to attract your ideal guests and turn them into repeat customers
- and much more!
How You'll Benefit From Taking THE Bed and Breakfast Course
Saves You Time and Money
The B&B course will save you time by helping you identify the information you need to run a B&B, without spending hours searching on Google
You'll save money by learning what has worked well for me, and other B&B owners, and by not repeating the mistakes we’ve made.
It's proof to any mortgage provider that you have done all of the proper background work.
Takes the Guesswork out of Setting Up a B&B
You’ll identify how to attract the guests you really want and create a B&B that gets rave reviews
You’ll find out all of the best hints, tips and secrets of owning a successful B&B that runs smoothly.
You'll learn how to create a B&B that guests will want to keep coming back to.
You’ll become part of an amazing community of friendly, supportive B&B owners who want to help you achieve your dream.
In the private Facebook Group, They'll share their ideas and best practise and support you if you're having a bad day. Plus your B&B will be featured on the Yellow Duck Collection Map so future guests can find you too
WHAT STUDENTS OF THE COURSE ARE SAYING:
"Karen's B&B Academy course was by far the single most important thing that we did when we embarked on our B&B journey"
"The online course is absolutely brilliant. I've created a reference file and I'm intending to go through all of the online lessons again"
"The online course is fantastic. I have been delighted with the course plus the extra support from you and the Facebook Group"
HOW DOES THE COURSE WORK?
Online B&B Course
The course is made up of 9 modules each containing pre-recorded slide based lessons, immediately available after you have purchased the course. You can work through the lessons in your own time step by step re-watch at any time.
In each lesson you can comment and ask questions. I aim to get back to you within 24 hours, Mon to Fri
There are also comprehensive downloadable notes and exercises.
Once you've signed up for the course, you'll be invited to join the Facebook Group for course attendees to receive support as you set up and run your B&B.
You'll also be able to list your B&B on the Yellow Duck Collection Map!
Two coaching calls with Karen
As well as being able to ask questions in the course itself and the Facebook group, you'll also have the opportunity to book upto 2 x 1 hour calls Karen over Zoom. This is your opportunity to ask any questions you have or to bounce around your B&B ideas.
Regular ZOOM Community Calls
The Facebook Group is a great place to get support and advice from other friendly B&B owners.
And we also have a ZOOM call at least once a month.
This call is a great way to get to know the other people in the community a bit better. And it's an opportunity to share what's working well at your B&B, as well as to find solutions to an issues that you may be having.
Comprehensive course workbook
Everything included in the main lesson videos ( not the bonuses ) is also available in written form in the 230+ page course workbook.
This is available to download and read online and can be printed.
Bed and Breakfast Business Plan Example
A huge thanks to Karen for her very thorough online B&B Academy course, for passing on her wisdom and for her encouragement and support.
I feel I am now confident in what I am doing and offering to my B&B guests. The reviews are encouraging and the guests are complimentary about the rooms and all the detailed little touches. I am happy I stuck to the continental ‘breakfast in a basket’ idea and it is working really well.
Karen really encouraged me to do what was best for me and not what everyone else was doing/offering, and to give it a go. Not one guest has complained about the lack of a hot breakfast or a dining room, which is great. I have been attracting the type of guests I thought I would in my guest avatars, (an exercise you do as part of the course) which has been encouraging. So thanks Karen, once again for giving me the confidence to go ahead with my plans, it has been a great start to my hosting business
Linda Read, Maple House Bed and Breakfast, Hay on Wye
B&B bedroom & bathroom design checklist and the ultimate kitchen equipment list!
room design checklist
You've probably got a Pinterest board of room design ideas for your bed and breakfast already.
But this 27 page checklist will help ensure you haven't missed anything in your B&B bedrooms and bathrooms. And is focussed on the practicalities of the room rather than the colour of the wallpaper.
Have you enough electrical sockets to plug in your vacuum, what's the best floor covering for guest comfort and for you to clean, can guests read in bed, are the rooms dark enough at night, what to put in your B&B room forget me not box and what does a good tea tray look like!
ultimate B&B kitchen equipment list
16 pages of everything you'll need in your B&B kitchen to make amazing breakfasts your guests will love. For every item there's a link to the best products to buy ( my favourites as well as recommendations from past course attendees)
Save time by using these documents that you can quickly edit in Canva to create your own:
- Welcome poster
- Do not flush sign
- Dog rules
- Guest registration form
Additional useful templates and documents
- Example B&B Terms and Conditions
- Guest Welcome email - template
- Cleaning Checklist
- Guest Information page
- Guest Registration form
- Breakfast Menus - Vegan, vegetarian, standard
- All my Breakfast Recipes
- Natasha’s Law Allergen training workshop
- Pricing workshop
- Suggested questions to ask when you’re buying a B&B
"Our guest said the course must have been amazing. Our place runs like clockwork and he couldn’t think of any negatives. They’d thought we’d been doing it for decades!"
A compliment to your course this morning, Karen, from one of our guests leaving today after a week long stay. He said the course must have been amazing our place runs like clockwork and he couldn’t think of any negatives. They’d thought we’d been doing it for decades! So thank you for sharing your wealth of knowledge, for being there for that extra advice when needed, for setting up the ‘B&B Academy’ family FB group no one could have planned for what this year has thrown at us all but we definitely couldn’t have got/get through it with out you and everyone in this group.
Catriona Haskell-Ward, Millburn Bed and Breakfast, Skye
How to use CANVA to create a guest room information folder
Canva is a great tool to create all of your B&B marketing material such as your guest room information folder, gift vouchers, social media posts and more! In this 4 part workshop I walk you through step by step how to use Canva, using a guest room information folder as an example.
I've also included a link to the guest room information folder I created so you don't have to start from scratch.
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Do you HAVE to take a B&B course?
NO! You don't HAVE TO. But would you benefit from taking a course? YES!
Setting up or buying a bed and breakfast isn't a cheap thing to do and it has a big impact on your lifestyle. So it makes sense to invest some time and a little money ensuring you getting it right in the first place.
You could spend a lot of time of time on Google ( or your favourite search engine ) looking for the information you need
But this will take you more time and the information you find may be out of date or even wrong.
And the biggest problem with doing all your research online is that you have to know what questions to type into the search bar.
One of the things I hear very often from course attendees is "I hadn't even thought to ask that question!"
If you need to borrow money to set up or buy your B&B your financial lender will probably want to see proof that you've done some sort of training.
Have you got a question?
When should I take the course?
How long will it take me to go through the course
How can I ask any questions I have?
Do you give financial or legal advice?
When does the course start?
How does the 30 day money back guarantee work?
Will you be running a classroom course?
I don't like Facebook can I still ask questions?
If there are 2 of us can we both join the facebook group?
LET'S TALK MODULES
What makes a successful bed and breakfast?
In this module you'll dive deep into what makes a good B&B and a good B&B owner, including the basics that EVERY B&B needs to be successful. You'll then look at the reality of running a B&B and the impact it has on your life.
You’ll get crystal clear on what makes a great B&B and create a vision of your own ideal bed and breakfast.
- The basics that EVERY bed and breakfast needs to be successful
- The skills and experience that every successful B&B owner has and what to do it you don't have them!
- How to manage the impact of running a B&B on your family, partner and friends
- Whether it's better to buy a B&B or set up one from scratch
How to do your research and reduce the risk of making expensive mistakes
It’s crucial to do your research thoroughly before setting up or buying a B&B. Both to show yourself and the bank that you know exactly what you’re doing. But also to make sure you’re running the RIGHT B&B to give yourself the best chance of success and happiness.
You'll discover ...
- The important elements that every B&B business plan needs
- Your why for wanting to run a B&B and create a detailed description of your perfect B&B
- Identify what research you need to do and how to do it
Understanding your legal obligations
I know! This isn't the most exciting part of running a bed and breakfast. And for some people it can be really daunting.
But you just need to go through it step by step and once you've got it all set up, you can run your B&B without having to worry about having the council knock on your door!
In this module we'll run through an overview of the main legal requirements for setting up, running and marketing a B&B in England and where to go to get further information.
Your bed and breakfast finances
How much to charge can be a real block for a lot of B&B owners. And undercharging can be as bad for your business as overcharging. In this module, I'll walk you through all of the aspects you need to consider when setting your prices.
You’ll also discover, A simple overview of B&B Accounting, How much can you expect to earn? How do you actually take money from guests? How to work out how much to charge, What to do when friends and family want to come and stay for free
Please note that I am not qualified to give financial advice. You should always talk to a financial advisor and/or an accountant before starting up or buying a B&B
Understanding quality standards and reviews
Love them or hate them, reviews are here to stay. Even if you choose not to list with Tripadvisor, a guest can still add your business and leave a review.
Did you know that a Tripadvisor survey found that even if you had a bad review, over 80% of guests were more likely to stay with you if you wrote a good management response?!
So in this module we'll look at how you can make good use of those reviews and turn them into a guest attracting advantage!!
We'll also look at the various quality assurance schemes available - those star ratings.
- If you actually need a star rating and how to go about getting one
- If it's worth going in guides and directories
- How to turn a bad review into a way of attracting more guests!
How to set up a B&B that runs like clockwork
In this module, we'll look at why setting clear boundaries is so important for B&B owners. We'll cover the types of boundaries you'll need to set.
We'll also cover all of the processes and systems you need to put in place to make sure your B&B runs smoothly and efficiently - how to get organised to make sure you're not having to do a 22 mile round at 6am to find a shop open selling halloumi ( I speak from experience ) and how to avoid those dreaded double bookings!
- How to create boundaries at your B&B that keep you, your family, partner, dog happy without coming across like Basil Fawlty to your guests
- How to implement B&B processes and systems that will keep your business running like clockwork, keep your stress levels down and ensure your guests are happy
How to design a B&B that your guests will love and want to keep returning to
You may well have decided on the colour of wallpaper, the antique bed frame and what bath taps you're going to install. But how easy is it for your guests to use the room?
Are the lamps big and bright enough for them to read in bed, are there enough sockets for them to plug in all the devices, are there plug sockets positioned for you to easily vacuum the room
In this section, we'll cover the main things you need to consider when setting up your B&B bedrooms and public areas such as dining rooms. Included in this section is the room design checklist - over 25 pages of everything you need to consider when setting up your B&B
How to design a room that is easy for guests to use and they love staying in
- What to do to make a room easy as possible to clean
- What you're required to do to make your B&B accessible
- How to set up your dining room and whether you need a guest lounge
- Room Design Checklist
How to set up the day to day running of your B&B so that it runs smoothly without the stress
By taking the time to understand and implement the systems you need to put in place, you'll be able to relax into enjoying running your B&B
90% of the time things will run smoothly at your B&B - especially if youve done this course 😉 - but it's also important to be prepared and expect the unexpected!
In this module we'll cover everything you need to know to for the day to day running of your B&B, starting from when the guests book right through to guest departure.
We'll also look at the things that can typically go wrong and what you can do to avoid or manage problems.
- How to take and record bookings and avoid those dreaded double bookings
- How to prepare the rooms before guests arrive
- Why that first impression is so important, how to welcome guests and check them in
- What to do whilst guests are staying with you including room tidies
- What to serve for breakfast and how to manage your breakfast service
- How to manage your guest checkout
- What to do when things go wrong
Marketing your Bed and Breakfast
How to attract your ideal guests and turn them into repeat customers
When I first set up my B&B in 2004, B&Bs didn't really have websites, definitely not online booking, no social media and there were no review sites and certainly no BOOKINGDOTCOM. Marketing your B&B has got a whole lot more complicated since then. But don't worry, I've got you covered!
In this final module we'll cover everything you need to know for successfully marketing your bed and breakfast.
- How to put together a marketing plan to attract your ideal guests
- How to create a B&B website that will get guests to book and how to get it found on Google
- What to do to manage the online travel agencies such as booking dot com and tripadvisor
- How to use social media PROPERLY to market your B&B FOR FREE!
- What you need to know about Advertising, PR and other paper stuff
Meet the trainer behind the course
Hello! I'm Karen Thorne
EXPERIENCED BED AND BREAKFAST OWNER AND TRAINER, DOG LOVER, MUM TO 1, AVID KNITTER, BIRD WATCHER
I'm the founder and owner of Bed and Breakfast Academy. I'm an experienced B&B owner, trainer, head cheerleader at the Yellow Duck Collection, dog wrangler, avid knitter, proud mother of Jess and wife to Rob - the one with the beard.
I worked for British Airways for 16 years, where I was an IT manager, trainer, coach and facilitator.
When we decided to escape the rat race, move to the countryside and set up my own B&B in Shropshire in 2004, there was very little support or information available for anyone starting a B&B. And I made an awful lot of expensive mistakes along the way.
I decided to combine my training skills with what I'd learned about running a B&B ( the hard way ... ouch ) to create a training course to help aspiring B&B owners like you create your best B&B life and to make sure you don't make the same expensive mistakes I'd made!
And Bed and Breakfast Academy was born in 2006.
It lovely to meet you!