Consider it as a guide to peace of mind. The House Manual is all about giving answers to your guests prior to them making the questions. As a host, you know your home like the back of your hand, so you are definitely the go-to-person to provide them ease, comfort and mostly knowledge. It’s a check on the box and an added feature to ensure they fully enjoy their stay at your home and adapt to its surroundings within a short amount of time and most importantly, hassle free! Since hospitality is all about going the extra mile, we are not here to recommend an ABC version, we are here to get you into the game with a House Manual worth 5☆ ratings.
Setting the Basics
When it comes to planning, size matters and a lengthy content will end up unread. Not every little point needs to be justified here. Try keeping it concise with a clear structure within two A4 or A5 pages. You can always search for the perfect template, but we recommend you always tailor it to your style. Writing with the right tone and giving your guests a warmer and more personalised welcome message will build up the human connection that will pay you back upon reviewing.
What to Include
A handy house manual should include everything from the WiFi password (placed to the top of your agenda) to your appliances quirks. Where spare keys can be found, emergency contacts, H&S info and your house rules are some of the categories that are truly necessary. They might seem a bit ordinary and boring, but do you really want to risk leaving areas uncovered? We don’t think so. Check-out time and transfer services from and to the local hubs are also areas important to be explored and clearly communicated.
Note: Guests’ feedback will tell you if anything has been missed, so don’t stress yourself making the first version your final one. You can always go back and adjust to your guests’ wants and needs.
Going the Extra Mile
The majority of travellers is seeking to experience a destination like a local and see through their point of view. That’s also one of the factors they choose an Airbnb instead of a hotel. You have provided them with all the basics to ensure a nice stay, why not getting your service to the next level? Check the bio and preferences of your guests and prepare a list of activities, restaurants, cafes, bars and attractions which you feel it would be a match to their wants. You can even create a couple of templates having in mind the group that your guest falls under. Are you about to host a millennial into sports and action or a family of 4? Maybe your ‘Things To Do’ section needs a little bit more research and tailored recommendations, but put yourself into their shoes, wouldn’t this wow you?
To help you make the most out of it, here is a basic outline with the info that should be included in your Airbnb House Manual:
- Welcome Message
- Arriving to the Destination
- About the Property
- Health & Safety – House Rules
- Handy Area Information
- Things To Do
- Restaurant Recommendations
- Local Must-Sees
- Departure & Transportation
- Stay in Touch
*Tip: If you are a creative mind and you feel that your guests would enjoy the process, don’t hesitate to gamify parts of your Manual. Create a treasure map for the Local must-sees or a point scoring system under the House Rules and reward your guests upon completion with a nice gift. Boom! An achievement and a stay that qualifies for a 5-star rating.
Do you judge a book by its cover? So do your guests. You wouldn’t read a white binder with the title House Rules, but you’d be intrigued to a sunny interior or warming living room photo with the title “All you need for a relaxing and enjoyable stay at our home!” on the cover. From high-resolution photos (we take this as granted) to the expert’s level of using apps to leverage their resources. Travellers never leave their home without their smartphone and they mostly search for everything through it. Whether you are tech savvy or not, with such easy-to-use applications you need to take advantage of this major trend. If you do decide to go digital, there are several mobile web apps to select from, in order to design your own Welcome Book.
Taking all into account, it should be clear by now that if you want your guests to read, then you need to give them something worth reading. Keep it simple, short and handy to encourage them and try to put some icing on top to make their stay a memorable one. An Airbnb House Manual is a fantastic tool for both the guest and the host that can enhance their engagement, don’t you now see the value?