Alternative if my host isn't always present?

My host gets a 10 out of 10 in almost every category, except he works 9-5 and isn’t always present to welcome guest - a big No No. Other than a simple 24-hour self check-in procedure are there other good ways I can make up for no host when the guests arrive?

Thanks for your idea,

Will Weatherford

What’s your business model? Are you the owner and you are paying your host a percentage of your bookings? Do you pay your host the same if he/she can’t perform the host’s duties?

I’ll tell you what I do. I am the host and my wife is co-host. I have a day job and my wife works from home. My listing is literally 100 feet from my own home. I send my guest a message the day before check-in and tell them to send us a message when they arrive and if we don’t respond within 1 minute they should self-check-in with code I provide. This is just in case there is something unforeseen that prevents either of us from meeting our guests. So far, it hasn’t happened, but eventually, I’m sure it will.

In your case, you could say that if the guest check-in is before ‘X’ time, then the guest should self-check-in and the host will meet you at ‘Y’ time. I can see where this could fail if the guest wants to check-in at 3pm and then go out for dinner at 5pm and not return until 9pm. But, this is where your host can work with the guest and earn his/her pay.

Most guests prefer not to have to meet the host. This is why Airbnb advertises self check in.

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I agree, I see most of my guests in passing during their stay but I do not do a meet and greet. They can check in at midnight, one less thing for me to worry about.


This is absolutely true. When I’m renting a place, I prefer not to meet the host too. But it’s also true that many host want to and prefer to meet their guests. Our guests are coming to stay in our property and I want to meet them - whether they like it or not. (Unless I’m allowing self check in a) because they are arriving in the middle of the night or b) they are repeat customers).

I want to meet guests for my benefit and not theirs (although they do benefit, of course).

It’s the perfect way to consolidate the sale ensuring good reviews, show the guests everything they need to know about the place, mention any behaviour you’d find objectionable etc. etc. etc.

But mostly in my experience (which is pretty vast, I have to say) guests seem to simply be better when they have a personal connection with the host. For that reason, and those above, I strongly recommend that someone does a meet and greet. This is for sound business reasons.

If your co-host can’t do it, then get someone who will. I don’t mean get rid of your guy if he’s doing a good job, I mean in addition. Depending on how much you pay your co-host either he or you should pay that person. And remember that you don’t want just anyone who is available, you need someone with good hospitality, sales and customer service skills.