How to Open a Super 8 Motel Franchise

From its humble South Dakota beginnings, Super 8 has become an internationally recognized economy motel brand.
From its humble South Dakota beginnings, Super 8 has become an internationally recognized economy motel brand. (Image: Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images)

If you're an entrepreneur and the hospitality industry appeals to you, consider becoming part of the Super 8 chain of motels. The company, owned at the time of publication by Wyndham Worldwide, has grown to more than 2,000 units since its founding in Aberdeen, South Dakota, in 1974. These motels are all franchised; there are no company-owned units, and the welcome mat is still out for new franchisees. Some experience in the business is required, along with an investment.

Getting in Touch

Contact Wyndham Worldwide for information on franchising with Super 8. The Super 8 website home page has a link to a contact page for potential franchisees; it requires some basic information about you as well as your proposed location, the amount of your available capital, your experience and your investment time frame. This contact page is available for all of Wyndham's franchises; you will need to specify Super 8 in a drop-down selection box.

Show Them the Money

According to a listing on the "Entrepreneur" website updated in 2014, the Super 8 franchise fee runs around $25,000, and there is a liquid capital requirement of $169,270. Startup costs can be financed either "in-house," meaning by the company, or through a third party such as a bank. These costs will run much greater if you're building a new motel instead of simply converting a previously built motel to the Super 8 brand. The company will charge a royalty fee of 5.5 percent on your gross; the standard agreement runs 20 years.

Hotelier Atelier

Attend a training workshop to get educated in company practices, operating procedures and standards. The level of training required varies; according to FranchiseHelp, the training can last up to 10 days. "Entrepreneur" lists a program lasting five days at company headqaurters -- Wyndham calls it the School of Hospitality Operations -- or two days at your location. Ongoing training opportunities include webinars, online courses and videos.

Link up With Corporate

Meet with your Wyndham liaison as soon as the contract is signed. If you are converting, a property openings manager will go over brand standards, insurance, various quality standards and the company's property management system. For new construction, a team for development, planning and construction services must review your site plans and oversee the initial phases, from site preparation to construction completion. During construction, you will be assigned a property openings manager. An operations support team is available once your doors are open, as is the company's 24/7 MyPortal intranet inquiry system.

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