When it comes to running a successful bed and breakfast, one of the key ingredients is being able to get along with the many types of people who will be staying at your bed and breakfast. Once you start operating a bed and breakfast, you are a host, not an owner; you will be greeting and welcoming guests, not clients.
You are now in the business of hospitality. The reputation of a successful bed and breakfast is built on the hospitality that it provides. A result of the interactions you have with your guests is repeat business and referrals. What guest who frequent bed and breakfasts are usually seeking is the pleasure of being able to become acquainted with their hosts and at times even develop a close friendship with them.
Here are a few tips and pointers that can help bed and breakfast hosts to increase the level of their guest’s satisfaction during their stay:
1. Welcome your guests at the front door with a warm and friendly demeanor.
2. Show your guests to their room, offer to carry their luggage and allow them the time to settle in.
3. If your guests feel up to it, offer them a quick tour of the inn soon after their arrival.
4. After your guests have been able to settle in, offer them a beverage and/or a light snack.
5. As a host. You should be knowledgeable about your area, offer your guests information on nearby places of interest and attractions.
6. Have a fact sheet for your guests with frequently asked questions and answers in regards to your bed and breakfast as well as the surrounding area.
7. Have maps and brochures of the immediate areas and even any nearby places of interest and provide your guests free of charge.
8. Collect local restaurant menus and have them on display or even in a binder so guests can have a good idea of what their options are.
9. Have “special touches” to appeal to a variety of guest types, for example a breakfast in bed for special occasions such as birthdays or newlyweds.
10. When guests arrive, find out what their preferred morning beverage is and make sure it is available.
11. Have loan umbrellas available in an umbrella stand near the door in case any unexpected weather occurs.
12. Have a special corner set up in the public lounge area offering a variety of books magazines and games.
13. Offer extra sample sized bathroom products such as shampoo, toothbrushes, toothpaste, hand lotion, etc. If you print your bed and breakfast logo on it, you will also me promoting your inn.
14. So that guests do not have to share soaps, offer small individually wrapped soaps or liquid soaps in the bathrooms.
15. Have an extra make-up mirror, hair dryer, curling iron, ironing bed and iron available for your guest to use.
Even if you start with these fifteen simple tips, you will be on the right path to being a proper bed and breakfast host. Make sure that you ask your guests what they would like to see more of and listen to their feedback; this will guarantee that they keep choosing your bed and breakfast over others in the area.