February 08, 2018

Create a Spectacular Welcome Book For Your Airbnb Guest

February 08, 2018

Create a Spectacular Welcome Book For Your Airbnb Guest

The vacation rental business blossomed out of people's desire to obtain all those things that hotels cannot provide, which often included more space, kitchen facilities, and a personal touch. Although rentals offer many advantages, an AirBNB guest can also get frustrated with a lack of a front desk to call, the absence of a concierge's stand, and appliances or entertainment systems that can be puzzling to operate. An easy solution is to provide a comprehensive welcome book to answer common questions. In addition, a welcome book is a great way to help your guests have an excellent overall experience in your city and neighborhood. Here are some things to include:

Welcome Greeting

First and foremost, use your welcome book to say hello to your AirBNB guest. If you can personalize the note with their names and anything you've learned about why they've come to the area, all the better. For instance, if you know they are celebrating an anniversary, you can include a hand-written note that says, "Dear John and Marcy, Welcome to my home! I hope you have a joyful anniversary celebration while you're here. I've included some of my favorite restaurants in this welcome book in case you'd like to have a special dinner out. Cheers! Joe"

Calendar of Events

Like the personalized note, you may consider putting together a calendar of local special events for your guests for the extent of their stay. This may take a little extra work, but you can keep a running compilation of local events, repeating regular events and then adding in special weekend shows, festivals or other activities as they come up. Simply print out the activities for the upcoming week and leave it with your welcome packet. Providing contact and ticket information can be an extra bonus.

Property Information

A welcome book is a perfect place to include important information about your property. Be sure to organize the information and clearly explain how to work your thermostat, entertainment system, WiFi, TV remote, and any confusing appliances. Don't forget to include passwords when needed as well as unusual bits of information like a lack of cell phone reception in the master bathroom. This is also a great spot to reiterate house rules about smoking, pets and check-out times as well as outline expectations about how you want the home left upon check-out and any community, subdivision or parking rules.

If you send this information in an e-mail upon booking and leave these details in a welcome binder, it will be easier to address any violations, damages or problems at a later time as well.

Contact Information

Be sure to include how guests can get a hold of you or a property manager around the clock. The individual should be able to get to the property quickly in case of problems or emergencies. Numbers for nearby neighbors who are familiar with the property or others who are willing to help can also be included.

Local Services

Include information about the closest urgent care, hospital, pharmacy, grocery store and gas station. Many of these things are taken for granted at home, but knowing where to go in a pinch when you're in a new area will be much appreciated. In addition, provide as much information about transportation options as possible. If you're near public transportation, be sure to include location of closest stops and route information. If there are nearby shuttles to the airport, point those out as well. Don't forget numbers to the local fire and police departments as well.

If you tend to attract business travelers, you may want to include services like the closest UPS or FedEx drop box and the address and contact information for a nearby print shop for last-minute or emergency business document production.

Favorite Restaurants

Use this section to help point guests to local eateries that reflect your neighborhood and city. If you have a particular restaurant or menu item that is your favorite, be sure to share the knowledge. If you have heard great things about other places, let the guests know that as well. Think of this section as a friendly conversation about your hometown with an out-of-town friend. Resist the urge to recommend a place that you've never visited.

Favorite Experiences

Everyone can find the big tourist traps online, but many travelers today want to experience the local scene. Put together some lesser known spots that may be appealing to guests. Where do the locals go for the perfect picnic? Which neighborhood pub has the best craft beer? Which mom-and-pop shop serves the best handmade ice cream?

Common Experiences

Beyond suggesting unusual, local experiences, be sure to provide a general listing of things like mainstream restaurants, movie theaters, local museums, attractions, nightlife, places of worship and activities for a wide range of interests. Include addresses, phone numbers, transportation options and even the amount of time it takes to get to the locales. Whether your guests are retired individuals, families, a group of friends or a couple, they should be able to find something that meets their entertainment needs in your welcome book.

When it comes time to compile all this information into your finished project, be sure to organize it in a way that makes finding information easy. You can use a three-ring binder with tabs labeled with the above sub headlines. You may be able to find online templates and services or use resources at local print shops to add photos and make your welcome book even more professional.

A welcome book will be a great resource for all your guests and will be a helping hand to you as well. Guests will be less likely to call you with questions if answers are easily found. You can steer new business to your favorite spots, helping them to continue to thrive and succeed and perhaps repay you the favor with referrals. The resources found in the book should help your guests have a more positive experience overall, leading to higher ratings and more bookings for your vacation rental in the future.

Tell us in the comments below what other items you would add to your Welcome Book!

Tagged: airbnb guests, guest experience, airbnb hosting tips