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How to Welcome Vacation Rental Guests | Top 15 Tips

How to Welcome Vacation Rental Guests | Top 15 Tips

Competition in the vacation rental market is increasing, but so is demand. Working in a healthy and competitive industry is not a terrible thing. In fact, it can boost your ROI and provide your business with a higher chance of standing out from the crowd.

As a result, vacation rental specialists must constantly strive to improve their hospitality. The best method to leave an everlasting impression on your guests is to make a fantastic first impression. To make the initial visit delightful for guests, you must go above and beyond. You want to spend the appropriate amount of time, ask the right questions, and communicate the relevant information. Furthermore, minor extras here and there make a world of difference.

So, how do you wow guests right away (while establishing the tone for a 5-star stay)?

To help you, here are 15 tips for the finest ways to greet guests at your vacation rental property.

Personalize the welcome

1. Personalize the welcome

Whenever possible make sure you are personally around to welcome guests to your property. If your property is located in a different state or country try to make sure that a cohost or property manager is available to greet your guests.

2. Help guests feel like locals

One of the advantages of vacation rentals over hotels is the ability to fully immerse oneself in the local culture. As a host, you may go above and beyond by providing helpful local recommendations to your guests. These can contain a list of your favorite restaurants or chefs, must-see local sights, and day trips in the neighborhood.

3. Set clear expectations for yourself and with your guests

Do a self-evaluation to establish if, when, and how you intend to interact with your guests to make the hosting experience enjoyable for both you and your guests. Because this is your holiday rental property, you must decide if you and your family prefer privacy or company. Indicate whether you will be on-site throughout the rental in your property description. Setting these boundaries communicates your expectations, as well as how you want your guests to behave and treat your property. Nobody has time to hover over guests, oversee their stay, or impose group activities. After all, this is a holiday rental, not an invitation to a party.

Give a local gift at arrival

4. Give a local gift at arrival

It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money but a small thoughtful gift such as a basket of fruits or a box of cookies can go a long way in making guests feel welcome.

5. Provide a welcome letter or instruction booklet

Each house has its own characteristics. Simple things you know inside and out, such as how to operate your kitchen appliances, gadgets, and security systems, can be perplexing to a guest.

To make the move smoother, place a welcome letter or an instruction brochure in your home. Alternatively, you can send an instruction packet to the guest ahead of time by email.

6. Make sure to be available

When greeting guests, always double-check that they know where to locate you and highlight that it is part of your job to be available if they require it.

Do not let check-in take precedence over your greeting. You should be aware that welcome and check-in are two separate things, with welcome always taking precedence. It is important to return later and complete any check-in responsibilities, but if a guest does not feel welcome from the outset, it is difficult to fix that later.

7. Personalize Welcome Emails

Always write a personal thank you for the booking and customize automatic welcome emails. Send a map, an estimate of how long it will take them to collect their bags, information on hiring a car, and directions to your house a month before their arrival. You should also offer a schedule of events that will take place during their stay.

Use a welcome checklist

8. Use a welcome checklist

Prepare a checklist that you may use to set up your property before guests arrive. Switch on the air conditioning (or heat, depending on the season), turn on the lights both inside and out, heat up the hot tub, check the TV, stock the refrigerator, blow off porches and decks, and leave a welcome message and a snack.

The most important thing to remember is to never neglect your phone. If a guest calls, answer! Even if the calls are ludicrous, you must still answer them.

Sometimes it's a guest looking for a restaurant recommendation or directions into town, other times they're having trouble running something on the property, or, worst case scenario, something has broken. Nothing is more aggravating for a guest than being unable to contact their host. If you are unable to answer the phone, return calls as soon as possible.

9. Tailor the experience

Knowing your visitor is essential when it comes to welcoming them. Discover who you're dealing with and what makes them tick. Welcome amenities should not be standardized; rather, they should be customized. Make an effort to ensure that whatever the welcoming amenity is, it is sourced locally.

10. No doorway conversations

Steer clear of engaging in conversation while in the entryway. Simply inviting someone into your home is a fundamental kind of human interaction. Come out of your house or room right away and start a conversation with your visitors. Consider even sitting down and sharing a drink with them if the chance comes.

Being a good host demands clear communication, but recognizing guests' wants and providing a little extra comes from relaxing discussion.

11. Consider a welcome bag

A welcome bag can be a simple goodie bag with a local snack, add a few local souvenirs and a printed copy of your Airbnb welcome book and you have yourself a welcome basket that will not cost you an arm and a leg.

12. Use the perfect words

Words have a significant impact on your business. The language you and your customer service staff use have an impact on how your visitors feel. Teach your team and yourself how to communicate effectively by choosing the appropriate phrases.

Saying "we are sold out," for instance, if your vacation rental is completely filled, would not be welcome. It would be more polite to say, "We are fully committed, but can we assist you in finding alternate housing?" Make every word count in order to establish positive communication with your clients.

13. Respect a guest’s privacy

Unless they request to see you or give off the sense that they want company, stay away from the visitors. Respect their right to privacy. Make sure to strike a balance between providing complete privacy and remaining reachable. Text messages are a useful tool for this. The information you provide is in print and may even be a link, making it less intrusive than a call.

14. Anticipate their needs.

Let them know what they might need to bring (waterproofs, walking boots, or swimsuits?), while highlighting all of the amenities you have available for them.

Share some first-day tips

15. Share some first-day tips

There's a good likelihood that your visitors may be hungry and exhausted after their journeys. Are there any great, affordable takeout options nearby? Would you be able to secure them a first-day discount? Let them know.

Ready to find out how Hostaway can transform your business?

Hostaway is proud to support thousands of Property Managers and Airbnb Hosts Around the world. We take pride in being Top Ranked in Vacation Rental Software Review Sites: Capterra, G2, Software Advice, Trust Pilot, to name just a few! Check out our reviews and read the Hostaway Case Studies from real successful and growing Short-Term Rental Managers!