Thank you so much for your kind message.
You assume I don’t know this! The first thing I do, is let them in, show them to their room, point to the bathroom, and say, “why don’t you settle in and relax, we can do the ‘tour’ whenever you like”. Can I bring you a glass of filtered ice water or fill your water bottles? Just let me know when you’d like to do a quick tour…" So they can see the amenities, show them where the directions ARE printed out for hot tub, coffee maker, etc."
(Plastic bottles/straws are a no no here, I don’t provide them.)
With all guests, all three (max of them)
Guess what? Most people want to do the tour right away, but I make it very clear that we can do it at their leisure. This works for me, then I don’t have to leave much signage and guests feel at home during their whole stay.
@BurmaPark Just ask them what they want. I feel that they want to get it out of the way, so they know where they can and can’t go, and can just relax with all the info. My tour is brief and takes 5-8 minutes. Sometimes longer if we break out into conversations here and there, laughing about microwaves, coffee pots, etc.
Keep the tour really short, the main safety points. Have the rest on a sheet of A4 in the room.
I’m a new host. I want to meet my guest for safety and security reasons. I use my own residence. I won’t be around. They have sole use. I want to do checkout so we can verify any damages together!! (Although I now have experienced damage—broken bed—that had I not stayed in my place immediately after my very first guest, my 2nd guest would have experienced a broken bed and I wouldn’t have known!!) You are looking for more hotel like experience. You’re running a business. Okay? Last, I think it’s the tone of your list (entitled!?!): and not the specifics inspiring rancor in some responses. The tone had my heart racing. Wow! I wouldn’t want her as my guest. Question: How much do you downgrade other hosts for things on your list? Are you rewarding others with five stars? Often? Seldom?
This is my complaint even at hotels - I use my phone as my wake-up alarm so having the phone next to the bed, charging, is a must.
I must confess my first thought was dear me, no offense but I hope Poppy never stays with me, scary thought! But the OP won’t, as I have a quite clear picture of the bed against the wall, so whew.
Poppy, how do you usually rate Airbnbs – are you a four star reviewer if one of your bad list items appears? It is interesting that Poppy seems to prefer Air not for the price, and definitely doesn’t want to interact with anyone, but is really looking for for kitchen & other amenities for longer stays. It is good to hear what makes guests happy, though as a guest I am more go with the flow flexible. I am not constantly traveling on business, however.
I am envisioning a total personality clash and crossed signals with gregarious hosts who are into getting to know their guests. Do you let hosts know in advance you are all business and prefer not to socialize? That would be kind, I think.
I used to provide small bar soaps (filched from hotel rooms by my peripatetic family, then proudly presented to me in “we’re helping you!” mode), but got tired of scrubbing soap scum off the sink and shower soap holders and counters, just one more thing to slow down my speed cleaning. So bring your own bar soap, Poppy, if you are ever in my neck of the woods. I permit you to move the bed if you wish, although you might stub your toe on the pub table!
Guests comments helped me to become a better host. I just asked my host about cord extension. Hope she will do something about it for her next guest
Bravo, I am with you on cooking oil and bless previous guests or hosts who leave theirs. I have instant booking for my room rental but with tongue in cheek. For one nighters its ok but for longer periods I would like to look over the guest before committing. On the other hand, I have had one bad booking in all the years I have been an Airbnb hostess and I wouldn’t have known that from her profile.
Re: wine glasses. Maybe it’s just me, but my guests have broken about 12 wine glasses since I opened less than two years ago. Plus, they never tell you that they have broken them. It’s one of those things I’m just done with as a host. It makes me want to put a sign w/a picture of a smashed wine glass in the trash that says “This is why we can’t have nice things” lol. I have some plastic margarita glasses and some nice glass tumblers. I figure people manage somehow.
Down to the thrift sho and buy your glasses for 50 cents… don’t care what happens to then and easily replaced.
Same here! I enjoy providing guests with nice things, like actual wine glasses, but they do get broken on a fairly regular basis. Just this morning, as @Joan would say, “Mr Chloe” said, “That’s it! Give them plastic!”, as he witnessed me tossing yet another broken wine glass in the trash.
It’s not like they are expensive. I pay $3 apiece for them at the Christmas Tree Shop, but the point is I can use the same set of 6 and only break ONE in three years.
I don’t think you read it in the spirit it was written - from a guest’s points of view. I could have already stayed at your place and you would never have known!
I am not looking for a hotel experience when I book an Airbnb I am looking for a kitchen and space, when I want a hotel experience (a one night stay) I book a hotel.
I am not travelling for business but for a holiday. There is nothing on my list that is a luxury, difficult or expensive to supply. They are all small bits and pieces that in my extensive experience in staying in over 80 countries (all on holidays) and at over a 100 Airbnbs help contribute to a guest having a good stay.
In the 200 plus “tours” I have had to politely smile my way through in dozens and dozens of countries I have not come across anything that I couldn’t have been told in written form in a printed Welcome Kit. This saves the hosts repeating the same thing all the time and stops the issue of it going in one ear and out the other of the guest’s because they are exhausted, stressed from driving and making it on time, have got lost on the way, don’t understand the language or, as has been discussed before just want the bathroom.
I can’t remember the names of those cafes and restaurants and the instructions on how to get there that you just rattled off, I had enough trouble finding this place! Please give it to me in written form so I can browse later or online in your guide book, as I am interested in your recommendations.
In my villas I am constantly updating the Welcome Kits, every time a guest has a question I try to make sure that I never get that question asked again, that my guests have the info they need to enjoy their stay (I host about 14 groups of guests a week).
In relation to my star rating, once again you miss the point. If I have been waiting for half an hour or more for a host to turn up at the agreed time then I will give a lower rating on check in. I am not the type of person who will mark you down because you didn’t supply cooking oil, that is just silly.
However the things on my list don’t happen at every Airbnb, I travel extensively over long periods and these are the things that in my experience can be improved on.
I receive 5* as a host and as a guest.
This is really amazing–what an impressive assortment of experiences from which to learn and grow. Gee, and here I was thinking I was cool because I’ve now stayed at 10… Ha ha!
If I had two tours per Airbnb I’d hate them too…geez
That was my first thought, too, but since she said “over 100”, I decided to give her the benefit of the doubt…
In terms of shortening the “tour”, I get what you’re saying. You’ve been traveling, you’re tired, and your bladder is about to burst. Get on with it already!
My tour isn’t’ very long, because you’re only renting a room in my house, but still, I try to keep it short because I know, you’ve been traveling. Now, if all guests were like you, and actually read the information I’ve carefully compiled in a 3 ring binder they will find at the foot of their bed, that would be one thing. But, unlike you, they won’t.
How do I know this? Because there is a particular thing I oftentimes skip over on my tour, if it looks like the guests really just want me to leave them the f alone. There are two large side by side windows in the guest room, with a single bank of wide louvre wooden blinds. The blinds are heavy and you must pull on the strings pretty hard to release the mechanism at the top which allows them to lower. Because I know it’s a problem for people, it’s on the first page of the guidebook, one of the bullet points showing the most important stuff.
50% of the time I leave this out of the tour, I get a text at 10:15 at night, after I’m already asleep, “Chloe, we’re so sorry, but we can’t figure out how to get the blinds down. Can you help?”
My point is, hosts give you long and involved tours because most of their guests either do not bother to read. So, in order to try to head of bad reviews, they try to explain as many things as possible.
I do understand your perspective, but until Airbnb stops punishing hosts for any review less than 4 stars overall, expect this behavior to continue. I see you’re also a host, so you must have totally quirk-free villas?
Chloe, I couldn’t agree more with what you have said, however you are renting a room in your home, this is totally different to renting an entire place like I do as a guest and as a host. I am aware that a lot of people on this forum are in home guests so my experiences don’t necessarily pertain to them.
I used to manage people’s home for them, they would rent them out while they were on holidays and rather than guests being thrilled that they had a large family home for their kids to enjoy on holidays they would complain about petty things. One review complained that from one of the kids bedrooms you could hear the toilet flush, really? Come on!
My experiences as a guest are with stand alone, mainly apartments as there are only 2 of us.
I also get that guests don’t read so I make a point of giving them the info in 3 places, message form, in their itinerary and printed in the Welcome Kit. But still last night someone asked me how to turn the water fountain on, I cut and pasted the info I had already sent them and sent it again, not to mention the switch is labeled, so I do get it.
In relation to my villas, they do have quirks and things that are very important. Like turn off the exhaust over the BBQ when you have finished using it (as it drives the neighbour mad) and the instructions for the spa. I print these and put them in a nice picture frame and hang it on the wall. I also have printed labels on items to tell them how to use them. On the back of the front door I have a label that tells you how to lock the door but I have still have had 3 guests check out and leave the place unlocked! This info was also given to them in 3 places so I doubt if they heard it from me verbally they would still have taken it in!
I do understand that you might not want labels and instructions all over your home, but one on how to work the blinds in a picture frame on the wall next to the blinds might save you some late night messages.
I also get the bit about the * rating, so on the bookshelves in a picture frame I have this and I think this has helped.
Ha ha, that’s funny. I thought it was over 100 but when I started to add up the months I have spent on the road and that started turning into years I realised it would be more like over 200!
I like to think it has made me a better host, but then everyone hosts as how they like to be treated as a guest and we are all different. So my hand off approach is not for everyone but I do always get 5* for check in and communication. If you aren’t in the same house as a guest it is important that you answer messages immediately.
However I do now add the disclaimer that I can’t offer after hours service, if it is an emergency call 000, after a guest complained that I didn’t respond to a 1am message.
I am always tweaking!
I was excited about your post, at first. But your defensiveness is unsettling. I learned things in your post I’ll pay attention to as I learn to be a better host. I was being honest in my response; same as you were. Do you give five stars often or seldom? I’ll bet not often. Right? I made so mistakes as a first time host. The task of running an AirBNB is more demanding than I’d imagined. And I really tried to anticipate my guests every need. But I was late that first time. I gave my guest a free night. I forgot liquid soap. I put out an expensive hand milled bar!! My guest said most folks expect liquid. I’d simply forgotten. I had it! So the spirit of your post is what I and others are responding too emotionally. I’m one guest in. Your list made me wince. That’s why I ask for third and last time: how often do you give five stars? Occasionally? Frequently? Seldom?
I left my guest a chocolate cake. But I didn’t think to leave her oil.
All best to you. Thanks for sharing your perspective.