As hosts we try to give our guests good value. Obviously there is a limit to what we can provide but by judicious shopping you would be amazed at how much value it is possible to put into a listing. All my guests (except those few who simply want to clean me out by taking whatever they can lay their hands on) will make a comment in the review process about what is supplied here.
Here is what I offer to each guest in the fridge, (apologies for the freezer section which is in need of a defrost) for their use and enjoyment……..
And here is a bit of stuff from the restock store.
I don’t know whether it is my upbringing but, I am a scrounger, I never like to see a bargain go begging, so let’s look at the cost of these things.
The Millers Chill and Carton Draft beer came from Dan Murphy’s, a large liquor chain who have a branch here in my town. My last purchase was for 3 dozen of each which had been there some time and were nearing their shelf like and were already on special…..but I got them for $1.05 per can/bottle (under half a normal carton price…so every guest gets one of each.
That 36 carton can of Coke original came out of the Aldi dumpster….The local supermarket dumpsters are an amazing resource for non-perishable goods! That carton did not cost me a cent, and because of our deposit legislation here, I get back 10c per empty can, so I actually make $3.60 on the carton….every guest of course gets a can.
The Dove soap I bought on eBay, I got over 700 cakes at 8c per cake….every guest gets one.
I have a relationship with Julie (purely professional) the manageress of the local Woolworths supermarket. When cheeses get within a few days of the best before/ use by date, she does not want to know about them! I never pay more than 50c per cheese….every guest gets a cheese plate with three nice cheeses and possibly a paté.
Eggs are from the chook house, we get around 7 per day, I don’t know quite what the cost of hen food is per day, but it is insignificant to a bowl of eggs!
The only things that really cost me market rates are fruit, Bacon, milk, butter, coffee, tea…..but my spend per guest night is never more than $6.50.
You can turn on a nice spread for guests on a shoestring budget, and they sure do reward you in the review process!
Not every host is in a position to do this but, I find it as a bit of a challenge to see what I can stuff in out there...and it's a challenge which I enjoy.
this is great :)
Food is not cheap in Croatia, many things cost more than in the rest of Europe. What you see in your fridge I would have to pay arround 25 US$. My nightly price for 2 guests in the studio is 40 US$
unfortunately, we don't have coupons like in the US or heavy discounts for products with nearly-expired-date. As far as I know, when the date expires then food is returned to the wholesale and it gets destroyed. Due to the bureaucracy, it is not possible to give it to charity or just throw it in the dumpster. Also, grocery stores dumpsters are in the locked storages so no dumpster divings here :)
In Croatia is common to provide just basics like oil/vinegar, salt/paper, sugar/coffee/tea... or nothing.
Thanks for posting! So many Americans - especially young Americans - are fighting for socialism these days. Your message is a reality check for them. Wishing you all the best and may God be with you.
I always offered the best and today I'm with my apartment closed, buy huge damages. By a doorman who did not know how to honor his function. Destroying my guest, who lost his head because he was mistreated by the doorman, what do you think of that?
@Robin I don't think that most people are going to be able to find a store that does deals with them for cheese and such, but I'd be more interested in how much of this stuff gets used v. going to waste?
We mostly offer items that are non perishable: coffee, tea, instant oatmeal, hot chocolate, as well as oil/vingegar/spices/basic refrigerated condiments.....so if they aren't used by one guest, they will be available for the next one. We sometimes also include one bottle of some type of juice or a package of croissants or some fruit.
I also wouldn't leave bottled water as it isn't necessary and just makes more trash, I always cringe when people show up with gigantic cases of water in a country where the tap water is totally safe and drinkable everywhere.
I totally agree on the trash point Mark (sorry can’t link for some reason).
I too love a bargain, but even better is finding a bargain that is single-use packaging free!
I would replace those plastic bottles in Rob’s fridge with refillable glass ones... the cheese with wax wrapped options... the bacon in a reusable metal box, bought from my butcher... the milk in a glass bottle, refilled from the farmer fresh pump station....and the orange juice, well that I’d replace with oranges from the market and a squeezer screw (those are just fun to use).
I reckon it would be quite easy to “plastic-packaging-free” that setup and reduce the cost even further. But it depends where you live a lot of the time. I don’t know what I’d do without a decent butcher, farmers market and cheese deli. If all these places weren’t so set on giving packaging free alternatives, it would be tricky.
Well that's where the problem comes in Ben!
As a host I do not have the appropriate food handling licences or approved preparation facilities to supply to paying guests food which is not in manufacturers sealed containers. It is illegal here to supply a few rashers of bacon in a plastic reusable container. It is illegal to put a jar of milk in the fridge which has come from some other container, cheeses where a portion has been hacked off a block and wrapped in clingwrap. ........You just can't do those things, local council health section would close me down the second they got wind of it!
Food handling to paying guests requires a food licence. The only exceptions to that is when the food is non perishable things like biscuits, tea and coffee and nuts or it is provided in the sealed condition the licenced manufacturer supplied it in. Funnily enough you are allowed to supply a few eggs in a bowl. The shell is deemed to be the sealed container!
Ben I have been into this very thoroughly and I work closely with Lilly Do the local health inspector to make sure I am not crossing any boundaries.
I do my bit as far as saving the planet is concerned....I produce all my own electricity and I harvest as much rainwater as I can, pumping it around the property using the electricity that I produce...I can assure you, I have a small carbon footprint! But there are things you can do and some you can't and supplying food to paying guests is one of those borderline things you must be careful with!
Seriously @Robin ?? It's illegal to repackage food in Australia or just your state? That's insane, but laws are laws I agree, so you can only do what you can do. It's strange because I studied law in UK, US, Canada and New Zealand, so perhaps I'll do Australia next... intriging.
I found that most laws say the same about food handling and licencing, but only against non-complimentary items. In NZ for example Airbnb hosts need to ensure they aren't "charging" for food as a separate item, therefore they don't need a licence to serve it and aren't subject to licencing rules. The exception is when a host provides a list of food items with a menu and prices against it and tries to sell food cooked in their own kitchen as an 'extra' (that's quite illegal without a licence).
You've caught my attention now so I'm off to do some reading on Aus rules. In other countries food handling legislation only applied to "food businesses" which is a generic term used for business that exist for the resale of food, i.e. not businesses who offer complimentary items as incidental to their business.
PS: Don't you offer complimentary cheese in your garden on a cutting board? How is it different? Or do you let them unwrap it all?
I always have coffee, tea, cream sugar,salt pepper,fruit,oatmeal, milk, sometimes bread, peanutbutter ,jelly,muffins and bottle water. Sometimes they use them if not they are saved for the next guest.
wow Rob what you are calling a shoestring $6.50 per guest is way over my head. I think it is nice how you are able to do all this...............? I am sure you do NOT intend to or mean to ??? I guess I'm thinking about the message that we are sending here. BUT are you setting it up for other hosts to somehow be subpar and not be appreciated for what they do. Or building a demand into the guests that if they don't get it next time they are 3* - 4* unhappy??? Just a thought Rob.
If you compare what I give and what you have seems I'm a cheap skate - but my last guests said to me on the tour - "WOW you are so generous, and so many hosts are so stingy" he said. So you see there must have been an expectation from that guest in saying stingy??? interesting for sure. I offer coffee/tea/sugar/creamer/ some bottled water - and a few bags of snack/junk (I tried good stuff and it wasn't touched - I went to the chips and junk and it gets eaten almost every time. ???
Folks are seeming to be so entitled these days, with all the narcissist out there and I would just ask you - is this fair play for the others hosting in your area? I know you are great at hosting and one of the best but gotta ask are your prices quite low ?? looks low to me and you add all those extras -
After each guest leaves and leave such lovely notes in my Guest Book - AND also in the review space - I wonder about what people expect, what they want, and what they appreciate - I have no complaints but I have read some wild reviews. Also, my neighbor is the cheapest large place and she gets the towel theives and those that take all the goodies, all the supplies - she also leaves loads of supplies and stuff (however, she never meets or interacts with guests like you and me and many hosts )
You know many on here follow your lead and your words of wisdom and sometimes we have a challenge, thought or question. So on this one I am most curious about what you think. I am sure you've wondered about it, knowing you as I do.
Cheers good man, Clara
You make a good point Clara, but as hosts we all shine in different areas. I don't offer a swimming pool, quad bikes to ride on, lots of listing space. All I offer is a converted garage and I need to have something that will attract guests to my listing as opposed to those others that are twice the size and the same price or cheaper than mine.
Possibly I am putting in place a false impression as to what guests can expect in a listing, but what I am trying to do is make my place desirable to keep my continuity of bookings up. I have stayed in Airbnb listings that offer more than what I do so it is hard for me to guage if I am being a hosting villian or simply a generous host.
The point I was making is, I only supply this because these items cost me next to nothing and if I had to pay market rates for them it would not be viable. I go out of my way to secure good deals and if my guests can benefit from this then, the guest and I are both winners.
Clara you no doubt supply things in your listing that I could not compete with but, that doesn't put me at a disadvantage, it just means we both host to our strengths.
Good on you Clara, all the best!
@Robin Hi, well yes to much of what you say. I think what you and I both offer - we can NOT purchase/buy. It is your charm and geniune personality and realness and me, its my honest "proud of what I offer" - hospitality. I don't hang or drink with guests as you do - which is lovely, but just talk to, listen and check on and leave them - but, available when needed.
I would be so curious - I'll bet if you offered your place & and some wine (cause, I know that's part of how you roll) & yourself as you do WITHOUT all the stuff - you'd still get rave reviews.
Now your guests expect all that stuff - so what happens if you have to purchase it someday??
When I have done something extra for a guests with an anniversary, or birthday - I have asked them NOT to put that in the review - as it is being done ONLY for them.
Yes, we have the beach 25 mins away - but, you have stuff we can't offer - people desire stuff depending on where they are visiting. Yes, the strengths are all that folks look for. BUT you play down or don't realize what YOU/and Ade offer - the world is so starved for communication , real communication and I think it can NOT be bought - I am pretty sure that is the essence of those reviews YOU get.
Looking at other hosts reviews: When we compare the ones that just say, the place was clean, etc. and barely mention host.
Or the reviews you and I get - they love Betts, conversation, etc.
I so appreciate that you can look at it from all sides -?? villian ??generous hosts?
I also totally love your expression:
Good on you Rob.............blessings good man, Clara
Most guests are aware of what is in the refrigerator because I detail it in my listing description so most of them do not come accompanied with a lot of food. Sometimes they will have a special dietary requirement such as gluten free or lactose intolerance and I will remove the items from the fridge they don't want. It has never become and issue, we make room!