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August 28, 2020

How becoming an expert local guide can enhance your guest experience?

Can becoming an expert local guide enhance your guest experience? The answer is simple travelers around the world are not just looking for a place to stay; they are looking for memorable experiences that you, as a host, can help create.

Airbnb and Short Term Rentals are the preferred accommodation option amongst many travelers, not only because you can stay at a fully equipped home all for yourself and family but because many hosts strive to help these visitors to get the most out of their cities. 

Therefore, being familiar with your city’s off-the-beaten venues and spots is a must if you want to leave a remarkable impression on your guests’ memories. Here are five ways you can enhance your guest experience by becoming a local expert guide.

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How becoming an expert local guide can enhance your guest experience?

Become a professional guide from your area

Probably you have years living in your town, but besides the mainstream landmarks of your city, do you know the secret gems the locals visit? Probably it’s a gorgeous park perfect for a picnic or jogging, or maybe it’s a good, pretty, and affordable restaurant that serves delicious dishes. 

Either way, you can add so much value by allowing them to get to know the area and experience more than just a property. Keep in mind that many guests will prefer to stay with you because of your local knowledge.

Provide a local experience

Many travelers want to experience the cities and places they visit, like locals. Here’s when your role as a host is vital to deliver that experience.

A first step to achieve this is creating a guest book with a section including your finest local selection. Add restaurants, bars, grocery stores, parks, and other relevant landmarks. Make sure to include schedules and tips to make the most out of those visits. 

If you want to take a step further, you can develop an itinerary including schedules, addresses, and the estimated time of the visit of those hidden gems of your city. Include pro tips like the best spots to park your car, traffic hours, free entrance hours to museums and parks, or a list of the places that only accept cash payments. 

Keep your guests busy!

First-time visitors and improviser travelers will love your above recommendations and will thank you for always suggesting them things to do around your city. 

Offering them a range of activities will allow them to save time searching for things to do and places to go in Google Maps, using that precious time to enjoy their travel. 

Pro tip: Websites like Eventbrite are great tools to search for local events and places to go!

Another positive aspect of this approach is that your home will suffer less wear and tear. The less time your guests spend in your home, the fewer damage your property will suffer. 

Keep in mind this is just a suggestion and is opt for the guest to take it or not. Show your self as a caring host willing to fill any void your guests could experiment during their travel.

Screen your guests by understanding their stay purpose

Understanding your guests’ stay purpose will help you to customize the local experience you have prepared for them, but also will help you identify risky bookings by asking a couple of questions. 

Let’s say you reach out to your guests to send them some tips regarding places to visit and things to do around your area. There might be two different scenarios. An ideal one where your guest gladly accepts your recommendation and is willing to take it with his/her significant other, and one that turns on the alarms, where your guest prefers to stay at home hanging out with some friends. 

The last scenario could be an indicator of a guest trying to party at your property. In an optimistic storyline, this could be an opportunity to get your home ready to fulfill your guest expectations. In any event, your screening skills have to arise with smart questions to assess the aptitude of your guest. 

Communicate regularly with your guests

Keep constant communication with your guests! Reach them out every other time to let them know you’re there to help. Remember that your role as a host is to give your guest the attention they deserve and giving them ideas to make the most out of their trips. 

Here are some ideas:

  • Prepare a daily automated message or email asking them every morning about their stays and the things you can do to improve it.
  • Craft a welcome card with an emergency or inquiry number in case they need any assistance from you. 
  • Answer as quickly as possible and be courteous in all your communications. 

More generally, show yourself as a caring host looking forward to adding value to their stay. This attitude will positively impact the overall performance of your listing and, of course, your guest experience. 

Conclusions

A local savvy host will increase their chances to deliver memorable stays, which will reflect in the reviews your customers leave in your listing profile. 

Your property amenities and infrastructure will significantly impact your guest rating. Nevertheless, your host footprint and signature will be the decisive element that will determine your guest experience and your chances of getting a 5/star review.  

Now that you know how becoming an expert local guide can enhance your guest experience, start rolling your sleeves to make your vacation rental business successful and meaningful. 

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Edgard Calero - Social Media Manager - Stratton Hospitality

Edgard Calero

Social Media Manager at Stratton Hospitality

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