Although business travelers were not initially the primary target audience, websites such as Airbnb and Booking.com had their eyes open and noticed a trend in corporate e-mails being used for bookings. So, they made a smart move and started developing a section that will cater to business travelers.
Why are travelers opting for more unusual options than a regular hotel room? Research done on Booking.com shows that one-third of business travelers are picking unconventional options that are not in corporate program. It helps more and more corporate business travelers, get the most out of their budget and have an ideal experience by matching them with hosts who cater to their needs.
Also, companies like Airbnb and Booking.com manage business travel bookings offering you proper business amenities, availability 24/7 as well as neat features such as a budget tracker and an assistant being able book on behalf of travelers. This makes the sharing economy great for both individuals who are traveling and companies who are arranging this for them.
If you’re target group are business travelers, either because it’s your preference, you don’t like children running around your rental, or you live near by a business center that’s convenient for your guests, here are a couple of tips to own the hosting game. Sure you can attract them to your Airbnb with a polished up Airbnb listing but what exactly do the busy business travelers want?
What You Should Do
Ensure an Easy Check-In
Short term rental hosts are usually more flexible when it comes to check-ins. They are easier to do, as most hosts find a way to enable 24/ check-ins. If you’re not able to greet them for some reason, make sure to let your guests know where the keys will be.
It takes a lot of pressure of business travelers, who are already on tight schedules, by enabling them to have one deadline less. There’s no pressure of coming before 10pm, otherwise they will get stranded on the street without a place to stay. Make sure not to impose such restrictions on your guests.
Although this characteristic is important for all hosts, no matter what your target audience is, it’s especially crucial if you’re targeting business travelers. Business meeting and events can pop up suddenly, without the luxury to prepare a few days in advance. That is why business travelers are looking into short term rentals as well. It’s easy to book an Airbnb, because most hosts are responsive and respond immediately or within the same day.
Oh, and there’s also the wonderful option of instant booking, which must be the favorite for all business travelers. Make sure to enable this option, so that they can book a night at your place in a matter of seconds, and still know that the booking is secure.
Be Their Guide
No matter how often a business person travels to the same destination, they never remember every single street in the neighborhood they’ve been in. So imagine having a conference in a unknown city. Would you like some directions and help from your hosts? Of course!
Although they will have already prepared for the trip, some business travelers book last-minute trips and don’t have time for anything, except for packing. Either offer them a map of the city, or mark necessary places in Google Maps . Or even give them a short tour when they arrive. They are busy people, but they will appreciate you taking the time, to save their time.
Give Them Some Space
Not all people are the same, but if someone is coming into town just for the purpose of business, they probably won’t have a lot of time during their stay to chit-chat about the local traditions and history, so it’s best to give your guests their space. Still, let them know you’re just one phone call away in case they need you.
What Amenities You Should Have
Invest in Fast WiFi or Nothing
As much as it is important for all of us to have a stable WiFi connection, it’s double the important for business travelers. Have you ever seen someone in a suit and tie that’s not constantly on the phone, wearing a headset and connected to WiFi, browsing his/her mail? Probably not. Invest in a good internet connection. It will pay off when you start racking in business travelers who read reviews about your placing having the fastest Internet ever.
Create a Nook for Work
It’s desirable to have a room, a corner or a nook that’s work-friendly. We know that this depends on the size of your property, but you can always find a way to create a separate space with a computer and all the working essentials, so they can get in their zone.
If nothing else, invest in a comfy chair and a laptop pad that they can put on their lap and work peacefully. Something beats nothing.
Stock Up On Hangers
Business travelers, most of the time, although it isn’t a general rule, carry several sets of suits or formal clothes that need to be neat. Basically, perfect. Is your wardrobe missing hangers or space to hang their clothes in so they won’t wrinkle?
This is important, because most travelers either don’t have time to iron their own clothes, or just won’t bother withit. But they will unpack their business suits as soon as they arrive, so have hangers available for them in order to avoid a wrinkle catastrophe.
Make it Group Friendly
If you on the other hand have a big short term rental or a vacation home that’s perfect for a team of business travelers, try to design it so they will have a space for working together. Either designate an entire room for their business, or have a space that’s comfy, bright and big enough, with a table they can all sit at, and brainstorm just as if they were in an office.
Provide Numbers of Local Restaurants
Either they will be thrilled that they can cook their own meals, or they won’t care much for it, and just want to order take-out. Especially if they are busy throughout the entire day. Be a good host, and write out some numbers of good local restaurants and bars in your welcome book, or pop it up on the fridge with a magnet where they will be able to find it once they reach for the fridge and a tasty treat.
Although they are busy, their mindset will tell them they should explore and make the most out of the trip. So they still want to experience something outside of their business meetings and your Airbnb.
So, do you think your rental has what it takes to cater to this kind of audience? If so, start looking into different kind of platforms that have the best options for business travelers. Is it Expedia, Booking.com or AirbnbT