If you want to make hospitality management your career, a master’s degree can be a great way to leap ahead. But for working adults already in the field, going back to school isn’t an option. That’s why online hospitality management master’s programs are so valuable. One benefit of earning your master of hospitality management online is that you can complete your coursework anywhere, provided you can meet the school’s technology requirements. Programs that would otherwise be out of your reach are now at your fingertips.

Additionally, attending an online master’s in hospitality management program allows you to study when it’s convenient. Online learning is an especially good fit for people juggling work and family responsibilities that make it difficult for them to keep up with a typical school schedule. Attending a master’s in hospitality management online school allows you to access course materials at the times that work best for you. If you’re attending an online hospitality management master’s school while holding down a job, you may be able to attend class part-time.

How We Ranked the Best Online Master’s Degree in Hospitality Management Programs

The editors at Best Master’s Programs know that an online master’s degree is only worth the career opportunity it can afford. That’s why BMP focuses on accredited, proven institutions with a track record of educational quality and job-market reputation. Programs are ranked by Niche and IPEDS data, including cost, potential salary, and student satisfaction.

1. Purdue University

Purdue University’s Hospitality & Tourism School offers an ACBSP Master of Science degree (MS) program in Hospitality and Tourism Management (HTM) that offers degree candidates in hospitality a business-focused curriculum. Purdue University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management requires students to complete 34 semester credits to graduate without requiring on-site residency. Students may begin this hospitality and tourism degree program three times each year – Fall, Spring, and Summer. This two year graduate degree in hospitality includes eleven classes that include leadership in hospitality, business statistics, advanced service management for tourism/hospitality, and strategic revenue management in the hospitality industry, to name a few.

Purdue University is the distance learning extension platform offered through the preeminently renowned Purdue University. Founded in 1869 as the result of the Morrill College Land Grant Act, Purdue University serves approximately 43,250 students.

Highlight: Purdue University is recognized for having one of the largest student enrollments of foreign students in the United States.

Degree: MS in Hospitality and Tourism Management

2. Boston University

The Hospitality School within Boston University offers a Master of Management in Hospitality (MMH) that can be completed in only three semesters. Boston University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program offers an accelerated graduate degree and prepares grads for rewarding work around the globe in hospitality and tourism. BU’s graduate degree in hospitality offers several academic tracks – real estate development & financing, digital marketing, revenue management & analytics, and innovation & entrepreneurship, plus a part-time program designed for working learners. Students complete 32 semester credits, plus an internship over the summer that lasts 300 hours.

Founded by the United Methodist Church in Vermont, Boston University was established in 1839 and now operates as a nonsectarian school. The university serves approximately 34,150 students on its campuses and online.

Highlight: Boston University is one of the city’s largest employers with more than 3,900 faculty members.

Degree: Master of Management in Hospitality

3. Arizona State University

Arizona State University offers a 31-credit Master of Sustainable Tourism (MST) that can be completed 100% online. Arizona State University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program requires degree candidates to complete ten classes that include sustainable thinking in tourism, advanced tourism and recreational studies, food management in tourism, and managing the sustainable tourism business, among others. Arizona State University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program offers 7.5 week classes that are taken one at a time. Students graduate from this master’s degree in hospitality and enter the workforce as industrial ecologists, travel guides, or chief sustainability officers, among others. Sustainability in hospitality is an emerging field with in-demand positions.

Arizona State University (Arizona State) is a public university that was established in 1885. The school’s multiple campuses (and online learning platforms) serve nearly 90,000 students.

Highlight: Arizona State University is recognized to have one of the largest student enrollments of all higher learning institutions in the nation.

Degree: Master of Sustainable Tourism

4. Washington State University

The Carson Business College at Washington State University offers a Master of Business Administration degree program (MBA) with an academic concentration in Hospitality Business Management. Wazzu’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program includes coursework in service management, hospitality operations analysis, and international tourism planning, to name a few. Students who graduate from Washington State University’s graduate hospitality management degree program find rewarding careers as Food/Beverage Directors, Hotel Managers, or Restaurant Managers, among others. US News recognizes Wazzu’s among the top 20 online MBA programs available in the United States.

Washington State University was founded as a land-grant agricultural college in 1890. The total student enrollment for Washington State University is approximately 30,550 students across all campuses and online.

Highlight: Washington State University is recognized as the 2nd largest of all institutions of higher education in the state.

Degree: MBA in Hospitality Business Management

5. University of Houston

The University of Houston offers a 30-credit Executive Master of Hospitality Management degree (MHM) program that offers partnerships with companies to assist in training mid and senior level executive managers. UH’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program requires no test scores for admission, although admission requires a minimum GPA for all graduate work of 3.0. Students enrolled in the University of Houston’s graduate hospitality management degree program will also be required to submit a hospitality-related research capstone project to graduate. UH’s graduate degree offers students the competitive edge required to excel as managerial executives.

Established as a public, research higher learning institution in 1927, the University of Houston is a multiple campus school that serves approximately 37,550 students with an academic staff that exceeds 4,000.

Highlight: The University of Houston’s alumni exceeds more than ¼ million individuals.

Degree: Executive Master of Hospitality Management

6. University of South Florida

The University of South Florida’s Muma Business College offers an MS in Hospitality Management that is now available entirely online. South Florida’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program can be finished in only three semesters for those students studying full-time. Students graduate from this master’s degree in hospitality management program and enter the workforce as event planners, travel agents, human resource management, or food/beverage managers, to name a few.

The University of South Florida (USF) was on the west coast of Florida in the mid 1950s. The University of South Florida is a space grant school that is a member of the state’s university system and a student enrollment of approximately 51,450 students.

Highlight: The University of South Florida holds the distinction of being the fourth largest higher learning institution in the Sunshine State.

Degree: MS in Hospitality Management

7. San Diego State University

The Payne Hospitality & Tourism Management School at San Diego State University offers Master’s in Hospitality and Tourism Management Degree (HTM) program that is designed for those working learners who have mid-level managerial experience of 5 to 15 years. San Diego State University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program has a small residence requirement at the beginning and the end of the program. Students can complete this graduate degree in hospitality management in about 1.5 years.

Founded as a teacher’s normal school in 1897, San Diego State University is now a research university that serves approximately 35,350 students. San Diego State University is recognized for having the highest research output of any small institution of higher education in the US.

Highlight: San Diego State University is recognized as one of the most diverse student populations and the 3rd oldest campus of the state’s university system.

Degree: Master’s in Hospitality and Tourism Management

8. Florida International University

Florida International University’s Chaplin Hospitality & Tourism School offers a Master of Science degree (MS) in Hospitality Management that requires degree candidates to complete 33 semester credits – all online. FIU’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program includes classes in hospitality enterprise technology, hospitality law, revenue management, contemporary global issues, and strategic management, plus a practicum, to name a few. FIU’s graduate degree in hospitality management is recognized by a number of college ranking services among the top global programs.

Florida International University was founded as a public university in 1965. Located in sunny South Florida, FIU is a space-grant university that serves approximately 58,450 students. FIU’s MBA programs have been recognized among the top global degree programs.

Highlight: Florida International University’s specialized International MBA program is also recognized among the world’s finest programs.

Degree: MS in Hospitality Management

9. Temple University

Temple University’s Sport, Tourism & Hospitality Management School offers a Master of Science degree (MS) in Travel and Tourism that can be completed entirely online through the university’s distance learning platform. Students enrolled in Temple University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program complete ten classes over 13 months if studying full-time or part-time at a pace that works for the student. Classes for this graduate degree in hospitality and tourism includes destination events – a global perspective, quantitative methods for business, cultural intelligence, tourism economics, and sustainable tourism development, to name a few.

Founded as Temple College in 1884, Temple University is now a public research school with a student enrollment of approximately 38,850 students.

Highlight: Temple University holds the distinction of being the largest producer of professional practitioners in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Degree: MS in Travel and Tourism

10. Auburn University

Auburn University’s Human Sciences College offers an MS in Hospitality Management that requires the completion of 33 online semester credits to graduate for the non-thesis track. Auburn University’s best online master’s degree in hospitality management program has a thesis or project-based track, which may require some residency. Classes for this graduate degree in hospitality management include consumer behavior in hospitality, the science of quality service in hospitality, advanced tourism analysis, hospitality enterprise, club management, conference coordination, and a professional internship, to name a few.

Founded as an all-male, land-grant school in 1856 by the state’s legislature. Auburn University (AU) is also a sea-grant and space-grant school with a student enrollment that exceeds 31,000.

Highlight: Auburn University is an integral part of Civil War history, with the campus used as a training facility for the confederacy.

Degree: MS in Hospitality Management

11. Colorado State University

Colorado State University’s Dept of Human Dimensions in Natural Resources offers a Master of Tourism Management degree (MTM) program that is available 100% online. Colorado State University’s best online master’s degree in hospitality management program requires degree candidates to complete 30 semester credits in coursework that includes sustainable tourism development foundations, law & legal liability in tourism, strategic management for travel, and quantitative analysis in tourism, to name a few. CSU’s graduate degree in hospitality combines both travel, tourism, and business theories and applications.

Founded as the result of the Morrill Land Grant College Act in 1870, Colorado State University now serves approximately 34,050 students. The Fort Collins campus of Colorado State University is the flagship campus of the CSU system.

Highlight: When founded, Colorado State University was created by the governor of the Colorado Territory.

Degree: Master of Tourism Management

12. University of North Texas

The University of North Texas offers an MS in Hospitality Management that requires students to complete 36 semester credits over twelve graduate-level classes. The University of North Texas’s best online master’s degree in hospitality management program prepares graduates for rewarding careers as food service managers, loss prevention specialists, event planners, or gaming management, among others. Online classes offered by UNT are offered in eight-week formats, allowing students to complete a master’s degree in less than two years.

The University of North Texas (UNT) was established as a teacher’s training school in 1890. The University of North Texas, as the state’s flagship university, serves approximately 40,350 students vying for academic degrees offered by UNT’s fourteen colleges/schools.

Highlight: The University of North Texas System includes campuses in Frisco, Dallas, Fort Worth, and Denton.

Degree: MS in Hospitality Management

13. University of Central Florida

The University of Central Florida’s College of Hospitality Management offers a Master of Science degree (MS) program in Hospitality and Tourism Management that is recognized by US News among Florida’s best online master’s degree in hospitality management programs. Central Florida’s innovative graduate degree in hospitality management requires degree candidates to complete 33 semester credits in classes offered entirely through the university’s distance learning platform. Students find rewarding careers as purchasing directors, events mangers, conventions managers, ore tourism bureau managers, to name a few.

Established in 1963 as a space-grant institution of higher education, the University of Central Florida (UCF) is also a member of the state’s university system. Located near Florida’s Space Coast (Cape Canaveral/Kennedy Space Center), UCF has one of the largest student enrollments in the nation – nearly 70,000.

Highlight: The University of Central Florida’s campus is located only a few miles from downtown Orlando and its many theme parks.

Degree: MS in Hospitality and Tourism Management

14. University of Alabama

The University of Alabama offers an MS in Hospitality Management that can be completed entirely online through the university’s distance learning platform. The University of Alabama’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program requires degree candidates to complete 30 semester units to meet the graduate degree’s matriculation requirements. CEOWorld Magazine recognizes the University of Alabama’s graduate degree in hospitality among the top twenty programs in the world.

The University of Alabama (UA) is the state’s flagship campus of the university system. Founded in 1820, the University of Alabama (‘Bama) is a sea-grant, land-grant, and space-grant higher learning institution. Approximately 38,450 students attend classes offered on the school’s campus or online.

Highlight: The University of Alabama is recognized among the first schools established on the American southwestern Frontier.

Degree: MS in Hospitality Management

15. University of Nevada Las Vegas

The University of Nevada’s Harrah Hospitality College offers an Executive Master of Hospitality Administration degree (EMHA) program that can be completed in only 24 months. The University of Nevada’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program is recognized among the top hospitality administration programs in the nation. This hospitality graduate degree offers two academic tracks – gaming management and hospitality management. Core classes include hospitality service management, financial analysis for the service industries, and human resources in the hospitality industry, to name a few.

The Las Vegas campus at the University of Nevada was established in 1957 as a division extension of the University of Nevada. UNL Las Vegas is a research school that operates as a land-grant and space-grant institution serving approximately 31,050 students.

Highlight: The first classes offered in 1957 were held in a local high school’s classroom.

Degree: Executive Master of Hospitality Administration

16. University of Kentucky

The University of Kentucky offers an MS in Retail and Tourism Management with an academic emphasis in hospitality management and tourism that offers the same tuition for both in-state and non-state residents. UKY’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program offers students the option of a thesis or non-these track. Classes for this degree include research methodology in tourism management, event planning and coordination, electronic retailing, and strategic management in the hospitality & food service industry, to name a few.

The University of Kentucky was established under the Morrill Act in 1865 and is one of two land-grant higher learning institutions in the Commonwealth. Approximately 30,240 students attend classes offered by UKY.

Highlight: The University of Kentucky holds the distinction of having the largest student enrollment of all schools in Kentucky – with fifteen libraries maintain on campus.

Degree: MS in Retail and Tourism Management

17. University of Louisiana at Lafayette

The University of Louisiana at Lafayette offers a MBA in Hospitality Management that offers students the opportunity to complete the degree in only fifteen months if studying full-time. UL Lafayette’s UKY’s AACSB-accredited best online masters degree in hospitality management program requires degree candidates to complete 33 semester units to graduate. The eleven required classes for UL Layette’s graduate management degree in hospitality include foundations finance, quantitative methods, data analysis, and policy formation, strategy, and administration, to name a few.

The University of Louisiana was founded as an industrial university in 1898. It is a member school of the state’s university system with the largest enrollment, which nears 17,000 students.

Highlight: The University of Louisiana’s campus in Lafayette is in the heart of the state’s Cajun culture.

Degree: MBA in Hospitality Management

18. Florida Atlantic University

Florida Atlantic University offers an MBA in Hospitality and Tourism Management that is recognized among the top programs byBest Schools Magazine. Florida Atlantic University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program prepares degree candidates for leadership roles in the tourism industry. Classes for this MBA in hospitality management include events management, hospitality operations, strategies for excellence in guest service management, plus a self-directed independent study in hospitality management, to name a few. Students complete this online MBA degree in less than two years.

Florida Atlantic University (FAU) was established in 1961 and is now a multiple campus higher learning institution with a student enrollment of approximately 30,750 students.

Highlight: Florida Atlantic University is recognized as being the first public institution of higher education located in southeastern Florida.

Degree: MBA in Hospitality and Tourism Management

19. University of New Orleans

The University of New Orleans offers an Executive MS in Hospitality and Tourism Management that can be completed in only one year following the university’s accelerated format. UNO’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program requires the completion of ten classes that include marketing application for tourism and hospitality, change management for hospitality, tourism destination development, and technology for hospitality & tourism management, to name a few.

Founded as a state university in 1956, the University of New Orleans now operates as a research institution of higher education and a member school of the state’s university system. The school’s urban campus in the Big Easy is home to approximately 7,850 students.

Highlight: The University of New Orleans offers academic degrees through its four colleges/schools – business, liberal arts/education, engineering, and sciences.

Degree: Executive MS in Hospitality and Tourism Management

20. University of Toledo

The University of Toledo offers a Master of Recreation and Leisure Administration (MRLA) with an academic specialization in recreation management that is the only degree of its kind available in the state. UT’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program requires 36 to 37 semester credits to graduate, depending on the exact academic track; however, full-time students can complete this graduate degree in only three semesters. Students enrolled in UT’s graduate hospitality degree program can opt for a culminating thesis, capstone project, or internship to complete their studies.

The University of Toledo is a space-grant institution of higher education that was founded in 1956 as a school for the trade and arts. The school is a member of the state’s university system with a student enrollment of approximately 19,650 students.

Highlight: The University of Toledo is recognized as serving the northernmost parts of the state.

Degree: Master of Recreation and Leisure Administration

21. Liberty University

Liberty University offers an MS in Sports Management – Tourism that can is accredited by COSMA. Students applying to Liberty University’s best online master’s degree in hospitality management program may potentially transfer up to 50% of the program’s required credit hours, which is 36 total for this program. Full-time students can complete this graduate degree in sports management and hospitality in only eighteen months. Classes for this master’s degree include sport & event tourism planning, current theories for hospitality & tourism management, and tourism marketing strategy, to name a few.

Established in 1971 as a Baptist College, Liberty University is now an evangelical university with a student enrollment that exceeds 100,000, including online students. Liberty University offers hundreds of degree options through its seventeen colleges/schools.

Highlight: Liberty University has been provided distance education since the mid 1980s when VHS tapes were sent through the mail to distance learners.

Degree: MS in Sports Management – Tourism

22. Lasell College

Lasell College offers an MS in Hospitality and Event Management that requires degree candidates to complete 33 semester credits to graduate. Lasell College’s University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program includes classes in hospitality and event law, ethics & risk management, organizational theory, global leadership, operations strategy, plus a research project and internship, to name a few. Students graduate from Lasell College’s online graduate degree in hospitality to find rewarding careers as benefits managers, marketing managers, or information systems managers, to name a few.

Lasell College was founded as an all-women’s seminary in 1851. The college’s suburban campus in Massachusetts covers more than 50 acres and serves approximately 2,050 students.

Highlight: Lasell College holds the distinction of being one of five higher learning institutions where all graduates have fully participated in an internship or practicum experience.

Degree: MS in Hospitality and Event Management

23. Johnson & Wales University

Johnson & Wales University offers an MS in Hospitality Management or a Master of Science (MS) degree program in international Beverage Management that students can complete in 15 to 24 months. Johnson & Wales University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program offers eight-week class formats and competitive tuition rates. Johnson & Wales University’s generous transfer credit policy allows up to 75% of required credits to be transferred, if eligible.

Johnson & Wales University was established as a business school in 1914. JWU operates multiple campuses through four states that serve approximately 12,850 students.

Highlight: Johnson & Wales University’s humble beginnings began in Providence, Rhode Island, with one student and one typewriter.

Degree: MS in Hospitality Management

24. Lynn University

Lynn University offers an online MBA in Hospitality Management that is designed specifically for working learners as it offers the flexibility required. Lynn University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program requires degree candidates to complete 37 credit units to graduate. Classes include resort development and management, operations & supply chain management, food service administration, and marketing management in a global economy, to name a few.

Lynn University is a private higher learning institution that was founded as Marymount College in 1962. The university’s campus in South Florida covers more than 100 acres and is home to approximately 2,950 students studying for the more than 50 undergraduate and graduate degree programs offered.

Highlight: Lynn University hosed the debate in 2012 between then-presidential candidates Mitt Romney and Barack Obama.

Degree: MBA in Hospitality Management

25. Stratford University

Stratford University’s Hospitality School offers a Master of Science degree program (MS) in International Hospitality Management that allows students to complete the degree in as few as fifteen months. Stratford University’s best online masters degree in hospitality management program includes classes in strategic business marketing, operations management, managerial economics in hospitality, issues in hospitality management, and IT in hospitality, to name a few. Additionally, degree candidates enrolled in Stratford University’s graduate degree in international hospitality must also complete a graduate research project to meet Stratford’s online degree requirements.

Stratford University is a multiple campus institution of higher education that was founded in 1976. Stratford University operates as a public benefit corporation offering online and hybrid classes exclusively.

Highlight: More than 20% of Stratford University’s student body encompasses military learners, with another 20% hailing from international locations.

Degree: MS in International Hospitality Management

Why Should I Get My Master’s in Hospitality Management Online?

Enrolling in a master’s in hospitality management online program offers several advantages over attending an on-ground school. Since you can learn anywhere, you can attend your hospitality management master’s online classes from home, saving you the time and money you would otherwise spend on commuting.

Another plus of getting your hospitality management masters online is that many distance programs allow you to study at your own pace. Some schools that offer courses toward an online master’s in hospitality management give students some scheduling flexibility in terms of completing assignments, as long as the work is finished by the end of the semester.  This allows you to spend more time on difficult coursework without sacrificing your other subjects.

In some cases, earning your master’s in hospitality management online can be less expensive than attending class in-person.  And if you’re attending an online hospitality management master’s school far from home, you won’t have to deal with the stress and costs of relocating.

How Do I Choose an Online Hospitality Master’s Program?

When considering the best online hospitality management master’s program, there are several factors to consider.

First, be sure the school is accredited.  Accreditation is a seal of approval given by an accrediting agency showing that the school has met high standards in terms of program quality, academic rigor, and administration.  Check with the US Department of Education and the Council on Higher Education Accreditation to see if the school you’re considering is accredited.  Online programs may also be certified by the Distance Education & Training Commission.  Keep in mind that regional accreditation is given more “weight” than national accreditation.

Also, make sure that the program you’re considering will help you meet your goals.  If you want to try to fast-track your career, look for a school that offers accelerated programs.  If you can’t take more than one or two classes per semester, look for schools that offer part-time programs.  Additionally, the best online hospitality management programs offer student services, such as academic advising and job placement assistance.  If the school you’re considering has on-site classes and offers these services to students on campus, the same services should be available to remote learners.

Similarly, online students should be able to contact their instructors when necessary.  The best online hospitality management master’s programs provide ample opportunities for students to connect with faculty when they have questions or concerns.

If you have earned some credits toward your degree already but would like to transfer to a different school, make sure that your previously-earned credits will count toward the new program. 

And while this shouldn’t be the deciding factor when choosing a school, look for a program that helps students connect.  Being able to interact with classmates through social media, discussion forums, and the like can make online learning less isolating.

How Much Can I Make with a Master’s in Hospitality Management?

A master’s in hospitality management salary depends on the career you choose.  Hospitality is a trillion-dollar industry, and this sector employs 1 in 10 people worldwide.  That means there is always a need for people with advanced degrees to fill leadership positions.  Therefore, you’ll likely be able to earn a master’s in hospitality salary commensurate to a managerial or executive role.  To get an idea of your earning potential, let’s look at some positions in the field and the expected master’s degree in hospitality management salary. 

  • Sales Manager: $126,640 (Annual median pay as of May 2019) 
  • Human Resource Manager:  $116,720 ( Annual median pay, as of May 2019)
  • Country Club Manager: $67,407 (average annual pay)
  • Revenue Manager:  $67,312 (average annual pay)
  • Restaurant Manager: $55,320  (Annual median pay as of May 2019)
  • Lodging Manager:   $54,430 (Annual median pay as of May 2019)

Others who earn graduate degrees in this field are self-employed.  If you have good business savvy, then your master in hospitality management salary as an entrepreneur can be quite lucrative.  Some graduate degree-holders work in administration or teaching at the college level.  Their hospitality management master’s salary can vary depending on where they’re employed, but the average annual pay for college instructors is $48,374 and for administrators, it’s $45,884.

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