Airbnb offers the opportunity for you to serve all types of guests, which means that they all have different needs. Sometimes there are guests who you secretly wish had never booked a stay at your property. They are demanding and have endless requests. In other cases, there are those guests who make genuine requests for amenities that you probably should’ve have considered sooner but didn’t think of. But, hey, this is a short-term rental business.
As a host, it is your job to anticipate needs of your Airbnb guest and try to accommodate them, if they are reasonable. However, don’t feel obligated to simply give in to your guest when you feel that you’ve already done enough.
Read the following tips to learn how to resolve common Airbnb guest demands before they arise while also setting boundaries for your Airbnb business.
This is probably the most common issue that hosts struggle with: Airbnb guest wants to come later or leave earlier. Although you might feel pressured to simply accommodate them, it can create major problems if your property is booked back to back. If you have a window of time between guests and you believe you can get the cleaning done on-time, allow your guest to stay for up to 2 additional hours. Beyond that, guests should pay for the additional time. Just make it a common rule. Don’t feel bad about charging them for it either.
You can also give them the option to leave their belongings at the property while the cleaning service is preparing your property for your next Airbnb guest. This might help some guests as well, especially long distance travelers.
If you have an extra bed, make it available to your guests. But you might want to consider charging an additional fee for this. If you don’t have an additional bed and your Airbnb guest frequently asks for one, you might want to think of getting an inflatable bed. However, make sure that you’ve agreed on the additional bed before your guests arrive.
Hosts often find themselves stuck in a situation where the Airbnb guest has brought along additional guests that they did not mention when booking the property. It’s not likely that you will like such a surprise. Again, don’t hesitate to charge extra for unexpected additional guests. It is absolutely fair that your guest should have warned you in advance. But if you do charge extra for additional guests, make sure that you’ve cleared stated your policy regarding the fees for additional guests in your listing so that you don’t risk a bad review. To be on a safe side ask your Airbnb guest how many people you should expect in advance.
Airbnb guest often asks to be called directly or requests your personal email address. There is a reason why Airbnb recommends that you don’t communicate outside of the Airbnb platform. Keeping your communications strictly on Airbnb keeps you safe. Instead, explain to them in a friendly manner why you can’t discuss anything outside of the Airbnb platform as soon as they request it.
There are guests that travel with their pets. This option should be discussed with you in advance for sure. You’ve got to have a clear pet policy in your listing. If you do allow pets on your property, make sure that you have the amenities that your Airbnb guest will need to care for his pet. Do not hesitate to list them in your property description as well.
Families with children have special needs that single travelers don’t. If you want to ensure that a family enjoys a pleasant and safe stay at your property, make sure that you have the proper amenities for children.
If you’ve listed your property as Family/Kid Friendly, it should have a portable crib with a firm fitting crib sheet available. You should also child-proof your property by installing removable safety gates for stairs, adding secure storage for household cleaning products, installing cordless window blinds, adding a gate around your pool, and other safety precautions.
Guests usually expect them to be there. Some hosts buy travel size shampoo, shower gel, and soap in bulk quantities. This is not really cost effective unless you can afford to place bulk orders. Our advice is to get regular or big size toiletries. Unlike the hotel atmosphere, your property will feel like home.
Now that you have an idea of how to resolve issues before your Airbnb guest can complain, here are a few other general pieces of advice to help you prevent uneasy situations:
1. Avoid special treatment of some guests.
Guests will notice and may even take legal action against you if the special treatment could be categorized as discriminatory.
2. Have the house rules ready. Send them to your guests and keep them at your property in a highly visible place, such as on the kitchen table.
3. Describe your amenities in as much detail as possible.
If you don’t want a bad surprise, don’t do it to your guest.
4. Stick to the Airbnb platform for all communications.
Never give Airbnb guest your personal email address, Skype or telephone number.
5. Always be polite.
Even when your guest is being difficult, provide professional customer service and be extremely polite. That said, if you have a clear policy regarding an issue don’t automatically give in to what the Airbnb guest wants, especially if it is unreasonable.
And remember, there is always a way to resolve any issue. Just hold your nerve and stay positive.