10 tips for being a great homestay host

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1.- Make your profile shine

Guests make their decision on which host to book with based on what they see in the host’s profile. So the more useful information you include the better. Apart from your home and area description, include amenities that are near your home, whether it’s a local park, a shopping centre or tourist attractions.

2.- Only include bright clear photos

A picture says a thousand words, as the saying goes and having great photos will really help you to stand out from the crowd. Take photos of your home in daylight and turn on additional lights if necessary. Photograph your home in landscape format, not portrait, to showcase your home at its very best. If you redecorate a room, update the photo of it so that guests can see how it now looks. Don’t forget to include a clear photo of youreself too. Guests like to see the face that will welcome them when they arrive.

3.- Respond to guests quickly

As a host, the more responsive you are the better. Prompt replies will positively influence your visibility on our site. When you receive a request, you have 36 hours to respond before it will automatically decline, so the sooner you reply the better. When you reply to guests promptly it will be displayed on your profile page. This will encourage even more guests to send booking requests to you as they know they’ll definitely get a reply.

4.- Update your calendar

Managing your calendar regularly is a great way to ensure you don’t get booking requests for dates when you’re unavailable. Whether you’re going on holidays, have family coming to visit or you just don’t want to host at certain times of the year, you can block out any dates you wish in your calendar sot that guests will know you are during those dates. If you don’t update your calendar and continually decline requests it will impact your visibility on our website.

5.- Find out more about your guest

It’s always helpful to find out a little more information about the guest before they arrive and to share some information about yourself, especially if it’s a longer term booking. Sending a short email introducing yourself and your family can make a big difference and put the guest at ease. It can also be nice to know more about your guest before you get to meet them in person.

6.- A Warm Welcome

We would advise you to take the time to offer your guests something as simple as a drink of tea or coffee when they arrive. Asking them about their journey and the visit to your hometown is a simple touch that can really mean lot to a guest. It’s quick, easy and something anyone can do.

7.- Go the extra mile

From talking to our experienced hosts there are a few things that really make you stand out from the crowd: keeping international adaptors in your homestay in case a guest forgets to pack one can be a blessing when they’re just off a long flight and want to charge their phone. Having a guidebook or map of local tourist destinations is also a really useful way to help your guest get their bearings so you can show them where best to visit and how to get there.

8.- 5 Heart Reviews

Ask your guests to review their experience of your homestay after their stay. Guests automatically get an email after they check out but often if you ask them before they leave, they’re more likely to complete it. Having all positive reviews is such a great way to boost your profile and it shows potential guests why they should stay with you. If a guest didn’t enjoy their stay and left you some feedback, we’d advise you reply to their comments.

9.- Go above and beyond as a homestay host

Going the extra mile will turn a simple homestay into the ultimate experience. Be a part of your guest’s journey by introducing them to more than your language. Your country’s culture may have inspired them to study your language in the first place, so give them the guidance and support they need to explore it and make the entire experience memorable.

10.- Enjoy the experience

Hosting can be a really rewarding experience and it’s a unique opportunity to share your home and culture with others. Being a homestay host allows you to meet people from all over the world and leaves you with great memories. Remember what a brilliant impact you have on your guests’ trips and how you enrich their visit to your city.

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