Having seen various discussions around the Community based on listing amenities recently, it got me thinking: which amenities are most in-demand at your listing?
I spotted this article on the Resource Center, which has suggestions on what guests are looking for at this time, but I’m sure your own experiences might be different. Are guests pining after a fire-pit, or desirous of a coffee-maker perhaps?
The article makes a good point that your specific amenities will likely set you up to for a particular type of traveller too - do you use your listed amenities to attract a certain type of guest?
It would be great to hear your feedback - which amenities are sought after in your listing?
I don't frequently get inquiries about amenities, but they are almost always about something that was clearly in the listing. At my guesthouse, the most frequent inquiries were if a power converter was needed (there is a picture of the US-style and UK-style electrical outlets), and if the kitchen was in their room (tagged picture and description stated shared kitchen).
Thanks for sharing @Debra300 - what's strange is that surely the best place to ask about different countries' power adaptors is Google, surely? Of course, you're right that it would help if guests read the listing and looked at the photos too 😄
Do you respond by linking them to the listing?
To me, check-in is the most inappropriate time to ask certain questions. During the greeting, I have had a fair amount of guests ask if the water is safe to drink or what are available activities in the area. It's irksome, because it tells me they did little to no research before arrival, and expect me to be their concierge. My usual response is to inquire about what they've read/ researched about the island. Then I say that I have no problems with the water, but they can purchase bottled water, if they choose. I also tell them that the TV has the internet, and keyboard for them to search for things that may interest them.
@Debra300 It's funny because even though I have usually done a fair bit of research on a destination, I tend to always ask if the host has any recommendations anyway, as the local tips tend to be the best ones. I also think it's a great way to get a feel for the host through conversation too, but it must be annoying to be asked the same question every time, especially if you've got multiple guests at a time!
My feelings are dependent upon how the questions are presented. If a guest were to say, "I read about the horse stables in the area. Is there one that you would recommend?", then I'd give a response based on my opinion and knowledge. If a guest says, "Besides going to the beach, what else is there to do?", I will refer them to do a search. This is because I would have to ask probing questions, and then make recommendations based upon their interests and budget. That's a travel agent's job.
The one piece of information that I always provide to all guests are the little local eateries and food trucks. They are inexpensive (compared to a restaurant/fast food place), and will "get your belly full".
@Debra300 that makes sense - and food recommendations are the most important ones in my book, the food trucks sound delicious (and authentic) 🥙
I just Googled St Lucian cuisine and all this talk of green figs and salt fish is making my mouth water!
Asking a host for local tips, restaurant recommendations, hiking trails, swimming holes, "not to be missed" things, etc, is really quite different from asking a host general questions that could be easily answered by doing some research, but it seems like some people are too lazy to do that and just ask questions instead.
Local climate and recent temperatures, what form of electric is used in a country not your own, endemic wildlife and insects one might encounter, what is considered appropriate attire in various cultures so as not to offend, are all things that travelers can and should research for themselves, rather than take up a host's time answering.
I don't mind being asked the same question by guests, though, if it seem a reasonable question to ask. For instance, several of my single female guests have asked if it's safe to walk the 20 minutes from my house to the center of town and the beach, which is a fair concern, IMO.
Location in city center.
Washing machine & drier
Many comments on the well equipped kitchen (we even baked cakes !) and plenty of pantry items.
Great to hear from you @Marit-Anne0, I don't believe we've spoken before - thanks for sharing 😊
It's really fascinating to me that guests would go to a city centre location and then stay at home baking, when there is presumably lots to explore nearby?
Do you have longer-term guests, or people who are on longer trips, and hence need the washing facilities?
Due to a certain virus I have not had so many guests in Bergen lately, but the last ones were back in February and stayed for 3 weeks, probably vegans, needed a good kitchen. Last spring I had an Irish couple for 2 weeks and there were definite signs of pastry baking.
I think it has to do with age and slow travel more than exploring; a certain type of guests. Guests from the US are also very often into their Norwegian/Nordic heritage.
Until today I also had a beach home in France and in off season I get those middle aged and elderly couples with a little dog, more interesting in a nice and dog friendly place to relax rather than doing extensive exploring.
Yes, you're probably right that it depends on the traveller themselves and what their preferences are - if I were staying for 2-3 weeks then I might be more encouraged to cook/bake. I notice you have the picture of the kitchen and the salt and pepper to show guests they are available, which is great signposting for those keen cooks 🍴
I guess log fires, both indoors and outdoors, are the way that guests in your region like to relax @Laura2592? I'm intrigued, as it's not something I'd ever ask about personally, although it does sound nice to have.
Have you had more pet enquiries since people have been travelling more locally during Covid?
p.s. I just spotted the fairy lights you've got in the outdoor space too - they look lovely and very fitting for the name 👌