1. Review check-in and check-out times
Decide whether you need to amend your check-in and check-out times to allow more time for additional COVID19 cleaning and disinfecting to be completed. With booking sites such as Airbnb and Booking.com introducing additional COVID19 protocols, it is likely that you’ll need more time to fulfill these. Many owners are changing their arrival time to later in the day, and are also asking guests to leave the property earlier too.
Check out the following resources for more information on COVID19 cleaning for your vacation rental:
- Read our blog 10 COVID19 Cleaning Tips for Your Vacation Rental.
- Find out more about Airbnb’s Enhanced 5-Step Cleaning Process.
- Read Booking.com’s Guide to Keeping Your Property Clean.
2. Minimise all in-person contact with guests
As with any hospitality setting, it is important to remember the rules of social distancing, and minimise all unnecessary contact with guests. For example, if you previously showed guests around the property when they arrive, this may no longer be appropriate. It is also a good idea to reduce the need for person-to-person contact by offering self-check-in and checkout by using a key safe or smart lock. If you live onsite, give guests a contact phone number they can reach you on, so they won’t be tempted to pop by and see you in person.
3. Provide a COVID19 care package
You can go the extra mile for your guests and give them a great guest experience during COVID19 by putting together a COVID19 care package for guests to make use of while they stay in your property. We recommend including some face masks, disposable gloves, hand sanitiser and disinfectant wipes.
4. Stock up on the right cleaning supplies
To show guests you care, and give them a great guest experience during COVID19, it’s important to ensure they can maintain the same high standards of cleanliness and hygiene while staying at your holiday home as they would at home. It is therefore essential to ensure that the property is well-stocked with the right cleaning supplies and sanitising products. We recommend:
- Hand sanitiser in key areas of the property e.g. at the front door, kitchen sink and in all bathrooms.
- Disposable gloves and disinfecting wipes
- Disinfectants and cleaning supplies
- Hand soap and paper towels at each sink, in addition to hand sanitiser
For more information on COVID19 cleaning, check out our blog 10 COVID19 Cleaning Tips for Your Vacation Rental.
5. Send guest information by email
Rather than having a physical guest information folder in the property, it is more appropriate to send every guest your welcome information via email. As well as including arrival instructions and any need to know information about the property, it is also helpful to provide the latest available information on any COVID19 restrictions and measures that apply to the local area, as well as where to access contact tracing e.g the NHS’s COVID19 App or Scotland’s Test and Protect App.
If you have essential guest information that needs to be left in the property, we recommend presenting this in wipeable, laminated folders which can be cleaned and disinfected between stays.
6. Remove or rotate non-essential amenities
Some owners have taken steps to declutter their holiday properties and remove any non-essential amenities that could be regularly touched (e.g. toys, games, DVDs, books, leaflets). Alternatively, you can disinfect these items at each changeover or simply make them available on request.
7. Reconsider your welcome basket
If you provide a welcome basket for guests to use during their stay, it makes sense to only provide items which have been pre-sealed and packaged – ideally presented in a wipeable container or box.
8. Reassure guests
Although many people are still keen to book a holiday home, remember that some guests may be a little anxious about travelling and staying somewhere that isn’t ‘home’. As a host, there is a lot you can do to reassure your guests and still provide a great guest experience during COVID19.
We recommend updating your online listings to include details of additional measures and precautions you are taking to keep guests safe. You can also include this information as part of your guest welcome email as well as in the property itself, on a noticeboard, or as part of a laminated, wipeable sheet.
9. Leave clear departure instructions
Provide guests with clear instructions about how the property should be left upon their departure. For example, you could ask that the dishwasher be loaded and turned on, rubbish disposed of and all beds to be stripped of linen and placed in linen bags or containers to help you/your cleaning staff.
10. Thank every guest
Perhaps now more than ever, it’s important to take the time to thank each and every guest for choosing to stay with you. As well as thanking them for their custom and encouraging them to book a repeat visit to you, also invite guests to write a review about their stay in your property on the relevant booking site, noting your COVID19 measures if possible. This will go a long way towards reassuring future guests.
Find out more
TravelNest gets your property seen in all the right places. We can list your property on over 30 of the best booking channels including Airbnb, Booking. com, Expedia, HomeAway, TUI and TripAdvisor.