The hospitality business is booming, from hotels and resorts to Airbnb’s and old fashioned bed and breakfasts. With many people starting to enjoy the freedom that comes with choosing an Airbnb, it is important for bed and breakfast owners to do what they can to stay relevant. A successful bed and breakfast depends on their guests to stay operating. With there being so many other hospitality options available nowadays, it’s crucial for bed and breakfast owners to separate themselves and give guests an experience that they can’t find elsewhere. Here are several tips on what makes a good bed and breakfast.
First impressions are everything
Guests get a feel for how their stay will be based on how it looks when they walk in and the vibe. Guests want a nice, friendly welcome when they first arrive. It’s a good idea to show them their room and maybe even offer a tour around the home. Allow them time to settle in and if you or someone else can carry their luggage for them, that’s definitely a plus. It would be wonderful to have light snacks and beverages, such as water and tea in the common area so that they can wind down from their trip. A great idea to make guests feel welcome is to offer some sort of welcome basket or tray in their room that includes fruit, desserts, or mints, with any pertinent information they may need during their stay.
Offer a home away from home
You want your guests to feel at home. It would be ideal to set up an area where your guests can get coffee, tea, or snacks anytime of the day or night. Maybe you could offer a space with a variety of different board games, puzzles, and books or magazines, so that guests with small children or families could enjoy it. Everyone loves access to WIFI, so offering your guests free WIFI with their stay is a plus. Guests love being able to surf the web, video chat with friends and family, as well as stay entertained. When traveling, I always love to make use of the WIFI by checking work emails and playing games at Bgames and Pokerstarscasino. So, offering WIFI is a great way to make customers feel right at home. Also, if you’re situated in a historic town, guests may want to know more about it. So, keeping a scrapbook, pictures, or material on the history of your area can really make guests feel more connected to the area.
Be an expert
More than likely, your guests are not going to spend all of their time in your home, so you want to be the “hub of information” for them. As the owner or host, it is your job to be able to answer any questions that your guests may have about nearby attractions, restaurants and shops, and you should be able to give simple directions to places, as well. A good idea would be to type up a fact sheet with frequently asked questions about your area, and you could also provide your guests with maps, brochures, and flyers about local places of interest. Something else that would really come in handy is offering a collection of menus from nearby restaurants in case they want to order in. You could even put all of this information in a three-ring binder so that it’s easily accessible.
It is so easy to leave the house only to realize that you’ve left something. Nothing is worse. This is why you should offer essential items for your guests in case they’ve forgotten or left something they really need. Liquid and individually wrapped soaps, hand lotion, plastic toothbrushes, and toothpaste are all essentials and should be kept just in case guests need them. Also, have disposable razors, floss, feminine products, as well as travel size shampoos and conditioners. All of these items are easily forgotten and will come in handy. Provide your guests with extra towels, enough pillows, an iron and ironing board. A coat rack to hang coats, as well as an umbrella stand by the door in the common area. Other items that will make your guests very happy to have access to are hair dryers, makeup mirrors, curling irons, and even robes.
Go the extra mile
What really sets you apart is how far you’re willing to go for your guests. For example, if you have a couple coming to stay for their honeymoon, it would be lovely to provide them with complimentary breakfast in bed and a list of romantic restaurants for dinner or offer some non-standard activities. Perhaps, you have a businessman traveling who has a ton of meetings on his itinerary, then you could find out what type of coffee he likes and make sure a fresh pot is brewed each morning and that he has a local newspaper at his door each day. Little, special touches like this go a long way and can really set you apart from your competition. These are the things that will keep guests coming back and leaving raving reviews.