The vacation rental industry is becoming more competitive each day, which means that unless your property is unique or in a very good location – it’s going to be harder to convince guests to stay with you.
The good news is that there are little things you can do to set your Airbnb apart from the rest and entice guests to book.
1. Airport pickup
Travellers will often choose hotels that offer a free pickup from the airport as a way of making their arrival to a new city as stress-free as possible.
This option avoids the hassle of having to navigate via public transport to your accommodation and lugging your bags with you during the journey.
Some Airbnb hosts are now offering this as part of their package in order to entice guests to book with them.
Although there’s nowhere to formally offer airport pickups on the Airbnb platform – you can list it as a free service as part of your property description and it’s bound to make potential guests feel favourably towards you.
Of course, if you are time poor or if you live very far from the airport – offering this service will not make financial sense but if you factor it into the price that you set and if it’s not too much of a hassle – it’s well worth considering.
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2. Welcome pack
The hotel industry has a good understanding of the power of ‘freebies’.
You only have to read glowing reviews of hotels to see how offering guests free treats when they arrive can win them over: “Hotel provided beautiful free welcome hamper with fresh fruit” or “Hotel provided free bottle of bubbles on arrival!”.
It doesn’t take much to put together a little gift pack to make travellers feel warm and fuzzy when they arrive. Whether it’s a bottle of wine or some samples of local delicacies – the sight of a basket of free things will please most guests.
Some hosts will mention their ‘free welcome pack’ as part of their description but be aware that if you mention it prior to the booking, there’s more pressure to make sure the gift package is impressive (as opposed to taking them by surprise with a few little goodies).
We have a helpful blog about creating the ultimate Airbnb welcome pack that’s worth reading for ideas.
3. Passes to local attractions
Often tourist attractions, cinemas, art galleries or massage centres will offer discounts if you buy tickets in bulk. It’s worth considering making this kind of investment as a way of encouraging guests to book your Airbnb.
Offering free day passes to a local attraction – or discount vouchers for an aromatherapy massage is a great way of showing guests that you are going above and beyond to make sure they enjoy their stay and get value for money when they choose your vacation rental over others.
4. Family-friendly offerings
If you’re trying to attract families to book your Airbnb, a good way to make your accommodation stand out from other vacation rentals in your local area is to offer items like high chairs, cots, additional mattresses, laundry powder (as well as free use of the washing machine /dryer) and a toy box.
All these things are worth mentioning high up in your property description as they are likely to get the tick of approval from parents who don’t want to spend extra money hiring travel cots during their holiday.
A local guide
Similar to the airport pickup – this option is only worth doing if you are someone with a considerable amount of time who is passionate about your local area and would find it fun to show guests around.
Many Airbnb hosts will let guests know in their listing whether they will be available to give advice and tips about restaurants in the neighbourhood. Some hosts will go as far as offering to be a local guide for a few hours in order to help new arrivals settle in.
We advise you seriously consider your personality type before offering this as a freebie though. If endless questions from guests are likely to drive you mad, best not to show them around.
Offering special services or day passes to guests is a good way to justify higher rates to offset any costs. Always factor the price of ‘freebies’ into your nightly rates so you are not out of pocket.
At the end of the day, guests won’t mind paying a few extra dollars if they feel you are providing them with a unique experience that differs to other Airbnbs in your local area.
Find out more ways that you can gain an competitive advantage in the Airbnb market by contacting one of our GuestReady hosting experts for a consultation. We are available London, Brighton, Edinburgh, to name a few cities.