Effects of prolongation of UK Social Distancing requirements

So it looks like social distancing until next year? Now, we’ve been open for three years as an “old school” AirBnB - we let out a bedroom and a bathroom in our small townhouse, and serve breakfast in our kitchen diner. We get about ten nights a month occupancy, which is enough for us! We’re now wondering how we can carry on our business in light of the distancing requirements - it’s especially important for us as we’re both over 70 and my wife is classified as “vulnerable”. Has anyone else in our situation thought yet about how they’re going carry on - if indeed they can?

Like you, I’m an in-home host renting out a bedroom and private bath with limited use of the kitchen for guests and usually have breakfast with them.

I plan on re-opening when we can here in FL for STR. Have also thought about a LTR roommate, but would have to have someone vetted and health checked.

Waiting game at this point, 3 years on as well.

Hi @southendbootboy

I think it’s likely social distancing will start to ease in the UK after May, but what will be introduced when, I am not sure. Likely it will be schools first so it will help parents who work.

I would hope that hotel and STR accommodation would be introduced before the end of the year.

When it does could you look at just offering the bedroom and bathroom (is that ensuite) to help minimise the risk to you both and maybe have tea and coffee available in their room.

It wouldn’t be doable in my case. The Airbnb room/bath does have a separate entrance, but there is no space to put anything like a mini-fridge, coffee station, etc. And my place is a 20 minute walk to town, shops and restaurants, and the majority of my guests fly here and then come to my town by bus, or if they are coming from another part of the country, they may bus the whole way. In 3 years of hosting, only 2 guests have rented a car, and none have arrived by car. So not offering kitchen usage is quite impractical. Many of my guests haven’t cooked, but they still need to keep a few things in the fridge, make coffee or tea, prepare a snack, etc. And I don’t like food in the bedroom-too many bugs here in the tropics.

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I’m not in the same situation (our rentals are separate apartments) but I used to be, with an old-style B&B, so the questions have occurred to me a few times recently. If I was in that same situation now, how would I handle it?

I decided that any guest worthy of the name would respect the necessity of social distancing and much as we like to think that people are staying with us for our wonderful, personal hospitality skills, really and truly they are simply looking for somewhere to stay.

I think that @Helsi has the right idea regarding breakfast. You can still leave a breakfast tray outside the guests’ room in the morning with pre-papckaged goods. I know that sounds like a downgrade from the breakfasts you offer - I remember the photographs from your listing (yum) - but careful shopping could produce a lovely breakfast for your guests. And I imagine that anything untamperable (is that a word?) like bananas would be fine too?

We’re accustomed to seeing people wearing masks nowadays so your wife could wear one around the house when you’ve got guests. (Maybe a cute fabric one rather than the ones that look like ‘ladies’ unnecessaries’ :slight_smile: )

Because your occupancy is relatively low, you’ll be able to leave a couple of days in between guests. The tricky part is if the guests don’t have their own bathroom though.

It would be such a shame if you stopped hosting!


This is very useful, thanks. Actually, since we converted our integral garage into an en-suite bedroom our guests now have their own bathroom. And a friend has made us both very nice Liberty print face masks!