Coronavirus Industry Insights

The New Normal: Creating Online Experiences For Your Guests

July 23, 2020 |

One of the most notable changes the pandemic has brought to the hospitality industry has been a shift to online experiences. Prior to COVID-19, listings and social media marketing may have been the only online ‘experiences’ property managers were focused on creating. But with the restrictions now put in place by the pandemic, these types of experiences are on the rise, with hosts looking for ways to make up for the lack of real-life experiences available by providing virtual ones to their guests. 

In fact, Airbnb and Tripadvisor have even expanded their services into online experiences, offering everything from cooking and yoga classes to virtual city tours. Take a look at some of these ideas for online experiences that you may want to consider adding to your stays as they can elevate your guests’ experiences and be the reason they click to book. 

Focus on Fitness
Physical fitness has become a key area of focus during the pandemic, with many worried about maintaining their health as many gyms and studios have had to remain closed. As a society it’s safe to say that there’s more willingness to participate and pay for live fitness classes. Therefore, we suggest providing your guests with access to virtual workout classes that they can participate in during their stay in your rentals. Programs such as CorePower Yoga, for example, will grant your guests access to on-demand yoga sessions that will cost you only $19.99 per month. Keep in mind that yoga is just one type of workout that you can provide online access to for your guests – check out other fitness subscriptions that are available here. Want to take it one step further? Also stock your rentals with the equipment needed for these online sessions, like yoga mats or free weights. 

Focus on Wellbeing 
Mental wellbeing is another area that needs just as much exercise these days as our bodies do. In a time of so much confusion and uncertainty, there’s never been a greater need for meditation and other workouts for the mind. Look into subscribing to a web-based meditation service like Headspace that can offer your guests a wide range of courses and exercises, all focused on their mental wellness, costing you as little as $12.99 per month. Although it takes little effort on your part, going this extra mile will not only make a huge difference for your guests’ experience in your rentals, but it can also be the differentiator that pushes travellers to choose your properties over your competitors. 

Focus on Local Culture 
With so many local attractions and tourist destinations being closed, now is the time to get creative when thinking of how you can bring local, cultural experiences into your rentals. As you’ll see across Airbnb’s Online Experiences page, hosts are thinking outside the box as they create all different types of virtual events that make up for any lost opportunities their guests might have in their local areas. Whether you film a tour of a nearby historical site yourself, or partner with a local company to create an interactive cooking course, you’re going to be able to offer travellers something unique while showing them how hard you’re working to give them a memorable stay. Perhaps provide one  exciting experience as part of their stayto incentivize guests to book. 

Think Different To Keep Your Guests Engaged
There’s no doubt that this pandemic has pushed all of us to rethink the way we do things, and the experience you provide your guests is no exception. Take advantage of all the different services and subscriptions available that can reinvent your relationship with your guests and make up for missed opportunities ten-fold. These extra efforts will pay off for you as you start to see positive reviews and returning guests as a result.

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