The Top 5 Holiday Travel Gripes, As Reported by LugLess — And What You Can Do To Help
All year long we look forward to the holidays, especially when there’s a trip booked. But too often weary travelers are faced with hurdles that dampen their spirits before they even reach their destinations: lost luggage, long flights made longer with delays, overbookings and cancellations, cranky kids (other peoples’ or our own… which is worse?), bad weather and unexpected expenses.
As property managers, guests who arrive exhausted and stressed are much harder to impress or even satisfy, so it’s best to think bigger than the space between check-in and check-out.
Here, our partners at LugLess lay down the best ways to please guests by getting ahead of the five most common holiday travel gripes:
1. Delayed/Cancelled Flights
Especially for those departing from or arriving in northern or mountainous areas, weather tends to wreak havoc on flight schedules during winter. A recent study estimated over 420,000 flight delays due to weather over the course of one calendar year.
Solution: If you get the guests’ flight numbers before their arrival, you can track their flight via the airline’s app in just a few seconds. A reassuring email from you commiserating about their delay, confirming property arrival details (at whatever hour they eventually do get in) and assuring them that it’ll all be worth it in the end, will go a long way.
2. Lost Luggage
It’s happened to us all. We get there, but our bags (and with them, our bathing suits or snowsuits, holiday gifts, and kids’ favorite blankets that they cannot sleep without…) don’t. And even a day without your stuff is a day too many.
Solution: Consider offering guests easy, affordable luggage shipping as an alternative to checking bags and they’ll feel like their vacation has begun before they’ve even left home. Instead of having to lug their bags to and from the airport (and pay ridiculous airline baggage fees), they’ll breeze through their travels unhindered by duffles and suitcases. Best of all, shipping bags ahead often costs less than checking bags with the airline.
3. Cranky Kids
There’s something about the recycled air, harsh lighting, cramped seating and interrupted sleep schedules that understandably messes with kids’ systems (and, by the way, adults’ too!). Nothing is more stressful for a parent than a fidgety, upset, overtired kiddo and nothing is more tragic than stress on vacation!
Solution: A small welcome basket targeting kids (and set at eye level) can be inexpensive and easy to put together, but have a big impact. Buy in bulk things like crayons and coloring books, mini plush toys, healthy-ish snacks, or destination-specific items, like sunglasses or goggles if you’re in a warm-weather destination. Equally important is equipping bedrooms with thick or black-out curtains, so sleep schedules won’t be further knocked off-kilter by ambient light.
4. Bad Weather
Rainy weather might be considered good luck on your wedding day, but never on your vacation. And without their comforts (and built-in distractions) of home, you’ve no doubt had some guests get stir-crazy when foul weather blows through.
Solution: Pull together some ideas for indoor activities in the area, using obvious resources like Yelp and TripAdvisor but also local Facebook groups, online Mom groups (MommyPoppins.com is a great site) and tourism board websites. Poll local friends of different ages for their suggestions and compile it all in a one to two-page document you can present to your guests. Bonus points: reach out to some of the organizations listed, like aquariums and movie theaters, and see if they’ll throw in coupons or discount codes for your guests. Most will.
5. Unnecessary Expenses
Between flights, taxis or rental cars, accommodations, meals out and activities, vacation expenses add up, and anything you can do to help with little things will be seriously appreciated.
Solution: Provide reusable water bottles with a note saying that guests are welcome to use them during their stay (but there will be a fee if they’re taken); offer breakfast items like cereal, eggs, bread and juice a la carte or in “baskets” alongside prices to be stocked; create a mini-bar of snacks (think small bags of chips, nuts, candy) and drinks—both alcoholic and non-alcoholic—with a price list. If done well, this can mean earning some additional revenue for your company in addition to bonus points with your guests.
Small Gestures, Big Payout
Big or small—whatever gestures you can offer to help make travelers feel taken care of won’t go unnoticed and will hopefully be reflected in the reviews they write after checking out of your property. Your thoughtfulness may even encourage them to come back on a return visit.
LugLess is a reliable and affordable luggage shipping solution that helps your guests do away with the hassles involved in checking and lugging their suitcases.
There’s More Where That Came From
LugLess is just one of the many partners in Guesty’s rapidly expanding Marketplace. Check it out to see what third-party solutions can save you time, enhance your guests’ experience and streamline every aspect of your property management business.