There is more to Airbnb than simply leaving keys in a box for your guests; it is about the experience of meeting new people, of getting to know your guests and of spending time making them feel comfortable and relaxed, whether with you in your own home or on their own in your rental property. Good hosting skills definitely don’t go a miss, but here are a few hints and tips for making your guests feel welcome.
Whether your guests are seasoned Airbnb users or first timers, they need to know the basics – where you are, the best way to get to you and how to find the keys when they arrive. The more open and available you are prior to their arrival, the more relaxed they are likely to be about turning up. Friendly, efficient responses to questions and offering detailed information about getting around the local area will all help towards making your guests experience with you a positive one.
A Warm Greeting
Whilst it is not essential to meet your guests in person – key boxes offer an effective alternative to personal check-ins – it does help to make them feel welcome. Opening the door with a smile and friendly greeting will put anxieties to rest, and offering a cup of tea and showing them around will ensure your guests feel at home; it is easier to relax if you know where everything is – kitchen, bathroom, bedroom etc – and if you know where the communal areas are and what you can help yourself to.
The Personal Touch
Greeting your guests personally is one way to add the personal touch, but there are others. All Airbnb hosts produce a welcome letter that includes need to know information - the WIFI password, contact details, house rules - but why not go a step further and leave a handwritten note welcoming your guests? Alternatively, turn the letter into a welcome pack and include maps, local guides, directions to local amenities – the supermarket, bank, nearest cash machine, transport links – and your recommendations for places to eat, drink and visit. Including a tasty treat, such as a locally brewed beer, wine or freshly baked biscuits, can really put a smile on guests faces and maybe well received after a long day travelling.
Not all guests want to spend time with their hosts and level of engagement will vary, but there is no harm in extending an offer for your guests to join you at the dinner table or on the sofa for a movie.
Few guests want to be bothering their hosts with questions every five minutes but equally they don’t want to spend hours trying to figure out how something works. Make their stay as easy as possible and leave instructions – you could even turn them into a house handbook. The more you include the smoother your guests stay will be; include things like how to work the heating, shower, oven, washing machine, and TV. It could also extend to things like whether to separate the recycling, what to do with food waste and how to fix small everyday problems, like resetting the WIFI.
This one should go without saying really, if you are renting your property on Airbnb you should make sure you clean before your guests arrive. No guest is going to want to sleep in a dirty bedroom, shower in a filthy bathroom or cook in a grimy kitchen; make your guests experience a pleasant one and keep your home clean and tidy. This includes tidying up clutter and leaving them some space, whether for their clothes in the bedroom, toiletries in the bathroom or food in the fridge.
Keep Well Stocked
It is always good to avoid panic trips to the shops, so ensure your house is well stocked with everything your guests may need – toilet roll, soap, washing up liquid, lightbulbs etc – and make sure they know where to find spares. It is a friendly touch to provide things like shampoo, conditioner and shower gel in the bathroom and some basics in the kitchen, like tea and coffee, milk, oil for cooking, and maybe some bread and breakfast food. If you want to go one step further, have things they may have forgotten handy, like phone chargers, for them to borrow.
Treat Others How You Would Like To Be Treated
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, treat your guests as you would like to be treated. Remember they are your guests and it is your job to make them feel welcome, so put yourself in their shoes and think about what you would like a host to do for you.
Need Help Managing Your Airbnb?
If you're snowed under by the work your Airbnb or holiday let is bringing you (which is no bad thing) then get in touch with us here at Elite Property Management. We provide bespoke Airbnb property management services in Edinburgh to help you get the most out of your property without it taking over your life.