I came across this article that was featured in the RentByOwnerGuide's blog in 2013. It was written by Cindy Amato from Bookerville and I feel it has more relevance now than it did 3 years ago. It's called:
Run Your Vacation Rental Like a Hotel But Make it Feel Like Home (ref)
Unfortunately, like it or not, guests DO prefer the option to instant book - why wouldn't they? And that's why companies like Airbnb & HomeAway are pushing instant booking so heavily. It provides a more "hotel" experience.
It's another debate entirely whether instant booking will actually work in the long run for vacation rentals. Sure, 100% it works for hotels & short-term rentals... but more expensive luxury holiday rentals... I think not.
Regardless of your stance point on instant booking for vacation rentals, guests still enjoy a hotel smooth experience with all the benefits of a home. Aspects of providing a hotel experience (as mentioned in the article) are:
- Hassle free booking
- Being clean, uncluttered and comfortable
- Be consistent
- Provide some special, complimentary amenities
- Well oiled cleaning & management staff
However, rentals ARE NOT hotels and provide other benefits to guests such as:
- Local experience
- Homely feel
- Self-catering amenities
- Unique locations
- Better suitability: Parking for cars, gardens for dogs etc
- More privacy
So why not marry the two? Airbnb is a perfect example of this. They recognise that guests love a hotel experience combined with a unique local and homely feel.
Running your business like a hotel will ensure your guests have a hassle-free stay... Making it feel like a home will ensure your guests have a memorable stay.
Therefore, I think it's important to keep this slogan in mind whilst running your business:
Run Your Vacation Rental Like a Hotel But Make it Feel Like Home