Vacation Rental Owners

Vacation Rental Self Check-In (9 Tips)

9 Advantages of Self Check-In for Your Vacation Rental

While there are many benefits to the traditional check-in process, self check-in has been rising in popularity. Giving guests the ability to enter your vacation rental property themselves comes with plenty of perks. In this article, we’ll cover nine of the advantages of using self check-in at your vacation rental property. We’ll also discuss three different methods of self check-in and the pros and cons of each.

 1.  Save Time and Effort for You and Your Guests

One advantage of installing self check-in for your rental is that it saves both you and your guests time and effort. It automates the process so that you don’t have to physically be at the property when your guests are checking in. You don’t have to hand off a key or verbally go over your house rules. For your guests, self check-in always takes less time than the traditional check-in process, so they can start enjoying the fun of vacation even sooner.

Note that this doesn’t mean you can’t add a personalized touch to check-in. You can still communicate with your guests and leave them a welcome binder that contains all the information they need.

 2.  Reduce Your Workload and Save on Travel Expenses

Another benefit of installing self check-in at your rental property is that it reduces your workload and can even save you money. You may not realize it, but the price of gas to go back and forth between your home and your rental property to check in each guest can quickly add up.

Plus, you could potentially be losing money while you’re in transit rather than doing focused work. With self check-in, you’re lessening your workload and opening up time for you to focus on anything you need to focus on. Maybe that’s finding new ways to improve the guest experience, maybe that’s looking into purchasing a new rental property to expand your business, or perhaps you need to stop by the hardware store. Regardless, installing self check-in is sure to lessen your workload and decrease your travel expenses, thereby increasing your profits overall.

 3.  Gain the Ability to Manage Multiple Properties at Once

Gain the Ability to Manage Multiple Properties at Once

Self check-in can open up your schedule so that you can manage more than one property at once. When you don’t have to physically travel to your rental property every time a new guest checks in, you may be surprised by how much more open your schedule becomes. The time you used to spend getting your guests settled into your property can now be spent focusing on other properties or other aspects of vacation rental ownership.

Automating the check-in process means that you can manage properties that are far apart physically. You could even manage several properties across the country or even internationally because you don’t have to physically be there to help your guests check in.

 4.  Make Guests Feel More Comfortable

Yet another advantage of installing self check-in at your rental property is that it makes your guests feel more at home. When they’re able to type in a code on a keypad or use their smartphone to unlock your smart lock, they get to open the door, walk in, and feel like the property is theirs. They get to walk through your vacation rental on their own and check everything out without feeling impeded by the owner. Instead, it feels like they’re walking into their own vacation home.

 5.  Increase Guest Satisfaction and Better Reviews

Self check-in is often associated with an improved guest experience and more guest satisfaction overall. And we all know what comes with an amazing guest experience: five-star reviews. As a vacation rental owner, good reviews are essential if you want to have a successful business. Therefore, installing self check-in is definitely something to consider if you want to improve, grow, and expand your business.

 6.  Simple and Convenient Solution

Self check-in is simple and convenient for both you and your guests. This is especially true if you send an automated message with check-in instructions to your guests a few hours before they’re due to arrive. Sending this message means that your guests can rest assured that they have all the instructions they need regarding how to get into the property. They also have a way to get in contact with you if they have any additional questions.

Simple and Convenient Solution

Meanwhile, for you, automating this process makes it so convenient that you don’t even have to take action when guests are checking in. Everything is already done for you! Self check-in is an easy way to make your vacation rental more convenient for everyone involved.

 7.  Ideal for Social Distancing

Ever since the coronavirus pandemic began, people have been more hesitant and wary as they travel. Self check-in has become much more preferred during these challenging times than traditional check-in because it doesn’t involve any face-to-face interaction. Enabling self check-in at your vacation rental property is sure to put many of your guests’ minds at ease and make them feel more comfortable traveling.

 8.  Appeal to Younger Generations

Another advantage of enabling self check-in at your rental property is that it allows you to hop on the technological bandwagon. You’re sure to appeal to the younger generations who are more tech-savvy. Still, self check-in is simple enough that even those who aren’t as familiar with technology should be just fine. Many travelers look for technological features like this one, so installing self check-in can even help you appeal to a larger group of potential guests.

 9.  Decrease Your Carbon Footprint

A final advantage of installing self check-in at your vacation rental is that it can decrease your carbon footprint. If you’re interested in being eco-friendly and making your property more sustainable, then self check-in can help you do that. You’ll save gas and lower your carbon emissions because you don’t have to travel to your vacation rental every time a guest checks in.

 Three Ways to Enable Self Check-In

Now that we’ve covered many of the advantages of enabling self check-in, let’s cover the three main ways to install self check-in your vacation rental property.

Smart Lock

The first and most tech-savvy way to enable self check-in at your rental property is to install a smart lock. A smart lock not only gives you the ability to control and track who accesses your property, but it also uses a time-sensitive access code to enter. You can easily change this code from anywhere at any time, making it easy to create a new code for each guest. This also ensures that the only people entering your property are the ones who are supposed to be there.

Smart Lock

There are a couple of downsides to this choice, though. To use a smart lock, your guests need to have a working smartphone, so older or less technologically-inclined guests might not be able to get inside if they don’t have a smartphone. Another potential issue to think about is that if your guests’ phones are dead and need to be charged, they might not be able to get in. A smart lock is also the most expensive option out of the three we’re going to cover in this article.

Lockbox

Your second option is a lockbox. This is simply a locked box that contains a key. You typically enter a combination, get the key out, and then use the key to enter the property. This method is tried-and-true and reliable, but it’s not exactly tech-savvy; it could even be considered old-fashioned.

Still, there are plenty of benefits to a lockbox, not the least of which is the low cost. You can get everything you need at the hardware store on a small budget. Plus, with a lockbox, you’re not liable to any of the issues that can come with technology.

The downside is that guests may misplace the key or even accidentally take it home with them. If this happens, you’ll have to replace the key and potentially the lock as well; you don’t want former guests to be able to access your property when they’re not supposed to.

Keypad

The third option is a keypad. While a keypad is more expensive than a lockbox, it’s usually cheaper than a smart lock. With a keypad, you simply type in a code to enter the property. Most keypads can have multiple different codes, so you’re able to set a unique one for each guest. This way, you won’t run the risk of people trying to come back and enter your property after their stay has ended.

Keypad

Another benefit of using a keypad is that it doesn’t require a smartphone. A keypad is also easy to use (even if you aren’t too tech-savvy) because all you have to do is push the buttons for the specified code.

Main Takeaways

  • Self check-in is convenient for both you and your guests. It saves time and money while also lessening your workload, allowing you to focus on other important tasks.
  • Many guests prefer self check-in, and it’s associated with higher guest satisfaction and better reviews. Since the coronavirus pandemic began, even more guests started to opt for self check-in because it doesn’t require any face-to-face interaction.
  • Smart locks, lockboxes, and keypads are three options for self check-in.
  • Smart locks come with many additional features but require a working smartphone for guests to enter.
  • Lockboxes are reliable and low-cost, but you may need to replace keys and locks in certain situations.
  • Keypads are easy to use and don’t require guests to have a smartphone.
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