Being a successful Airbnb host is not just about securing new guests for your property. It’s also about keeping those guests happy – before, during and after their stay.
What’s the first step to creating good vibes between you and your guest once they’ve made a booking? You should start by sending them an awesome welcome letter.
What is a welcome letter?
A welcome letter is a great way of showing guests that you care about their stay and want it to be the most enjoyable that it can be.
Usually welcome letters are between 1-3 pages in length and cover a range of topics relating to your home – from how to use appliances, to where to buy a tasty baguette or bowl of noodle soup in the local neighborhood.
This letter is also an opportunity to remind your visitors of the house rules in a friendly way.
When should you send it?
There are a few different approaches when it comes to the timing sending your letter. Some hosts will have an automated welcome letter that is sent electronically when the booking is made.
Others prefer to send the letter closer to the arrival time of their guests – choosing to send a ‘Thank you for booking, we’ll be in touch shortly’ email as a response to the booking.
If you want to hold off from emailing your welcome letter in advance, we advise you don’t leave it too late. Many Airbnb guests will be travelling and possibly without reliable internet leading up to their stay so consider sending your letter at least 3-5 days before they check-in.
Some hosts also like to print out a copy and place it in the hallway or entrance so that the guests can re-read the letter when they arrive and refer to it when they are trying to find their way around the house or apartment.
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Airbnb Welcome letter checklist
- Directions to your home – Imagine getting off a long flight and navigating your way through a new city…and then not being able to find the doorway to your Airbnb apartment. It might sound strange, but giving your guests your address is not enough. Make sure you write a detailed list of instructions about how to find the location and don’t be afraid to ask for their email address so you can send photos and maps.
- WIFI – One of the first things your guest will want to do when they arrive is to login to your WIFI network. Provide them with your password and any instructions needed to reset the router if there are problems.
- Appliances – It might seem a little silly to leave instructions for how to use a microwave in this day and age, but remember that your guests will be coming from different corners of the globe and won’t necessarily be familiar with the appliances in your house. Don’t forget to list instructions for heating or air-conditioning devices as well as kitchen appliances and sound systems.
- House rules – You will most likely have these listed as part of your property description but the welcome letter is a great way to reiterate your house rules and make sure they are fresh in the minds of your guests. Need some help with this? Check our article on how to write effective Airbnb house rules.
- Check-out information – Where should guests leave the key? What time do you require them to depart? Where should they put their trash? Don’t forget to outline the check-out process in your welcome letter.
- How to contact you – If you’ve done your job well, chances are you won’t hear from your guests during their stay as you will have answered all their questions in your welcome letter but it’s always a good idea to provide a number that you can be reached on (and remember to keep your phone nearby and switched on).
Making it personal
As tempting as it is to view Airbnb as a business transaction between two strangers, it’s important to remember that the reason many people choose to stay in an Airbnb property is because they want to connect with a local and to feel that they are having a unique experience. For this reason, try to make your welcome letter as personal as possible.
Share something about yourself and why you love living where you live. Offer up ‘insider tips’ about the local neighbourhood – whether it’s your favourite green space to go for an evening stroll or the cafe that does the best coffee.
If there are events happening in your city during their stay, be sure to mention them. This is a wonderful way of letting guests know that you want them to have the best stay possible and that you value them as a guest.
GuestReady offers full Airbnb management services to help hosts take care of everything from corresponding with guests to cleaning up after each stay.