Writing to guests when they depart

Does anyone here write a thank you note to their departing guests? Do you think it would be appropriate to do so and in this communication to explain the importance of great feedback. Good example wordings appreciated.

This is especially important to me as an airbnb newbie as I only have one booking (for a month) which was made soon after my airbnb listing was published.

Many thanks!

I thank them when they arrive. I leave them a welcome basket with a thank you card. The day before their departure, I send them check out instructions and again thank them for staying at our place.

I think it’s a good idea to thank guest. It’s up to you when you wish to do it. It can be the day before check out or the day of check out.

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I do much the same as @Ritz3. When I get a booking, I immediately message the guests:

"Thank you for choosing us for your [city name] adventure/visit/trip! I’ll send full directions closer to your arrival date. Your check in code will be the last 4 digits of your phone number. Thanks again and wishing you happy/inspiring travels! "

When guests depart I almost always end up thanking them in my review, or in the personal comments sent only to them. So yes I do thank guests on arrival and on departure.

As a guest I really love it when a host acknowledges my booking because it helps me feel welcome and that they aren’t going to cancel on me.

I leave commercial pastries in a basket on arrival but no card. I do leave a friendly, even slightly humorous Guide Book though. I used to bake muffins but an insurance agent did not approve so now I buy locally made ones that are in sealed wrapping.

When I started out almost 1 1/2 years ago now, I got 2 long bookings in a row (one was 75 days). I think I was lucky those folks were as clean and respectful as they were,

If I had to do it over, I would limit all bookings to 7-14 days when starting out. Because you need the turnover because you need the reviews so you can raise your rates to market rates ASAP. And also because longer stays are over hard on the real estate—as I say, I think I was lucky but not everyone is!


Thanks both for your advice. I have actually been using fullsome rates as my villa is an “own-use” property and I initially just wanted a few guests to cover my operating costs and didn’t think of this as a profit making venture. However, now I have got going and have seen what I can charge, Im quite keen to make this a little more commercial.

I think I must have been quite lucky to get my first booking for a month just a week after I started to self manage (still my only AirBnB booking), at the rates being offered.

I have already done a lot of what you suggested in terms of the communications on the run up to the guest arriving and sent her house rules and important info, including an offer to arrange airport transfers as well as personal advice that hiring a car (in Phuket) is a really good idea and something we do personally as a family. I think I will use these communications to develop some standard messages for the day of booking and then a week and a day before arrival. I have also put bottled water in the villa to get them started and my local host arranged fresh flowers. Fruit baskets are also inexpensive. I guess I will send a standard thank you on the day of departure and also ask for “an honest positive review or rating reflecting a positive experience” (specifically allowed by airbnb) or similar in my own words. Thank you again - it’s good to hear from experienced hosts.


Not my style. As a teacher who dealt with students begging for grades for 28 years, it’s a turn off to me as both guest and host. That’s entirely personal for me and many businesses do ask for feedback and reviews and try to educate customers on it.


Understand - we all have our own style and I guess it depends how you write the feedback request. I would never presume that a guest will simply say nice things because I ask them to. I’ll need to develop some suitable words.


I presume they will because I’ve provided a first class stay. In my hosting since 2014 I’ve gotten over 650 5 star reviews (out of 674) and I didn’t ask for a single one. The only category where my average is 4.9 not 5.0 is location. I’m in a great location in my city but I live on a dumpy street with hard trash neighbors two doors down.

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Hey KKC - sounds like you don’t need to change a single thing! Congrats on great results and presumably high occupancy accompanying this. I’m keen to encourage feedback from my initial guests but won’t be “hard sell” about it. Being as helpful as possible, communicating well and not being petty probably goes a long way - plus of course keeping the villa really well presented and maintained. Making the the whole airbnb thing work is a bit of a challenge and an also quite fun.


Honestly, I’m closed a lot now between my busy in home dog boarding and direct bookings. However, before the pandemic I had my best month ever. July 2019 28 days were booked in 23 different bookings. I have a lot of one night stays in my tiny rental. So it’s easier to get lots of ratings (about 70% of my guests have reviewed me) and not have issues with such a small space and short stay.

Good luck to you, I think @RiverRock asks for reviews…

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Be careful. If guests feel like they are being pressured to leave you a 5 star review, it can backfire. Like KKC, I have never asked guests to leave me a positive review, and I have never had less than 5 stars.


I guess there’s no single correct path. Asking in the right way doesnt need to be high pressure.


Thanking guests for booking with you, saying you hope they had a comfortable stay, and that you would appreciate it if they could find the time to leave a review is fine, but if a host tried to tell me that I had a positive experience and that I should leave a review saying that, I would be likely not to bother leaving them a review at all.

If you attend to making sure the place is clean and communicate well, and respond in a timely manner to any issues, it isn’t necessary to try to nudge guests into leaving you a good review.


Muddy I don’t think I or anyone else suggested doing this. Credit us with some common sense please.

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That is trying to tell a guest they had a positive experience and that that is what you want them to write.
So you did suggest that.

Whether Airbnb allows that wording or not is immaterial. Airbnb allows and suggests all kinds of things that may not be in a host’s best interest.

Guests will leave positive reviews if they felt good about their stay, and the ones who are prone to find fault with everything and critically nitpick will do so regardless of anything you say.

I have a homeshare listing, so have personal interaction with guests. I thank them for coming when they check out and don’t feel I need to follow that up with more thanks, nor do I employ verbal or written tactics in order to encourage them to leave a good review.


Who is it who said there is nothing more uncommon than common sense?

Oh, and the other one is, no one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the general public! :laughing:


Muddy as you can see, I said that this is a direct quote of airbnb policy - but actually I personally would use alternative words. In any event this isn’t “telling” the guest that they had a positive experience and that they “should” leave a positive feedback, particularly if appropriately prefaced. It specifically uses the words “ask” and “honest”.

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On the morning of checkout, at 8 AM we send the following scheduled message (Note the BOLD section at the end is my emphasis for this forum post.):

Good morning [guest first name],

We hope you have enjoyed staying at Tranquility Base Cabin and that you’ll consider signing our guest book located on the coffee table. This message is not intended to rush you, but just to remind you, that check-out time is [checkout time], and we or our cleaning crew may be arriving at that time. We don’t charge a cleaning fee or service fees, so all we ask is that you please kindly do the following before you depart:

√ Please simply rinse any used kitchen ware and leave it in the sink. No need to wash and put things away; we will wash them! Leave any food that you don’t want, but be sure to put anything perishable into the refrigerator.

√ Please bag and tie trash in the provided bags, and place the bags in the wheeled tote located just outside under the bathroom window, along the north wall.

√ Regarding Recycling: Sadly, the local refuse company does not currently offer recycling pick-up services at our address. If you do not want to place your recyclables in the trash, you may leave them at a local non-profit drop-off center: Coyote Corner at 6535 Park Blvd in Joshua Tree (drop-off behind the store) uses proceeds from the donation of recyclables to provide free drinking water to travelers. Alternatively, The Cactus Mart at 49889 29 Palms Highway in Morongo Valley (on your way to the 10 freeway) donates their proceeds to the Morongo Preserve.

√ For safety, ensure that all propane units are shut off: barbecue, gas range, fire pit.

√ Check drawers, closet, and electrical outlets for your personal belongings, and please don’t forget to sign out of any streaming services on the TV before you end your stay with us, as we won’t be held responsible for any use of your personal streaming accounts by subsequent guests.

√ Turn off all lights, close & latch all windows, leave the Climate Control set at 70°F, lock the sliding glass door and then the front door as you exit.

√ Please send us a quick message to let us know you’ve left.

Finally, when prompted by Airbnb, please leave us an honest review, and if there is anything we can do better, let us know through the private feedback section. We’d also love it if you’d mention us on social media. If you’d like to recommend our cabin to friends or family, copy and paste our custom url below.

Instagram – Please follow us @tranquility_base_cabin
Web – tranquilitybasecabin.com (under construction)

We look forward to hosting you again!

Thank you!

Bob & Tam


There is no curbside trash or recycling pickup where I live, I have to haul it all out myself. If you don’t live near your rental (it seems you do, as you said “we or our cleaners will be by at check-out time”, have you considered leaving a box for recycling for guest who are conscious about those things, and taking it to where it is accepted yourself, to cut down on the amount of garbage guests are creating? I think they’d be more apt to recycle if you had a box for it, as opposed to them taking it away themselves and to the drop-offs.


Hi @muddy,
Those are valid suggestions, but we simply don’t feel like managing other’s waste beyond what we do. For our county, proving you have paid scheduled trash pickup is a requirement for the issuance of an STR permit.

Thanks so much for sharing this. I plan to do similar in 2 weeks on my first guest’s last day. I wasn’t aware there is a private feedback section (which is super helpful to know) and I like the way you have politely and gently asked for honest positive feedback, as well as dealing with the leaving formalities. Fortunately I have such a lovely local host who is a retiree manager of the villas at a 5 star resort and a super charming individual, and she will also meet the guests at check out, and see them off when they leave.