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Potential problem with guests at next changeover

 
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akwe-xavante



Joined: 01 Jul 2015
Posts: 253
Location: East Yorkshire

PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:45 am    Post subject: Potential problem with guests at next changeover Reply with quote

I may have a potential problem with my guests at next changeover in 9 days time so I have a little time to think about what to do in advance.

A retired couple that have now booked for the third time in two years and they have always booked a full three weeks. A delightful couple, no trouble at all and they leave the place spotless when they leave. Obviously I don't want to upset them and loose them as I hope they will be rebooking again and again in future.

OK, problem, their daughter drops them off and then returns to pick them up, I don't have a problem with this, they live, the whole family live 2 1/2 hours away by car.

On this occasion I have discovered that the daughter after dropping them off has gone on a holiday of her own to Crete on this occasion and she will be flying back in the early hours of the morning she intends to pick up mum and dad. The guests have asked if its possible for them to "Hang around" the cottage until the daughter arrives. Daughter is confident she'll arrive at the cottage before 10am.

But what if? I can see allsorts of potential problems arising.

I've said OK but made it clear that there are new guests arriving later in the day.

Has this happened to you and I'd welcome suggestions. There are few buses and no trains out of the town and I have no idea at the mo if accommodation could be found elsewhere on the day. They could vacate to a local pub or café perhaps.
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Giraffe



Joined: 26 Jun 2016
Posts: 391
Location: Cornwall, England

PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 8:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How wonderful to have such lovely repeat guests, and for 3 weeks at a time plus leaving your place spotless!

Have you saved much on changeover costs? If so, and their daughter is unfortunately late, why don't you treat them to a lunch in the local pub? You will have moved your problem on. Small price to pay for their future bookings, but don't set a precedent.

If the worst occurs and they need accomodation for the night then the publican is likely to have local contacts. I was recently looking for some immediate accommodation for friends and the local pub was extremely helpful.
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zebedee



Joined: 12 Sep 2014
Posts: 841
Location: yorkshire dales

PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 11:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can't see how Girrafes response can be improved on.

Great idea, and you only need to pay for the lunch if there is a delay. Very Happy
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Martha



Joined: 16 Apr 2006
Posts: 2202
Location: Chamonix

PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've experienced the 'hanging around' guests and it can be very awkward. Giraffe's suggestion is great if you feel like buying them lunch as a thank you for being such good guests!

I've always:
- made it tactfully clear that it isn't fair on the cleaners for them to be in the house, and that they do need to be out at 10.
- made it also tactfully clear that you will be short of time on the day and not around to assist with everything for them
- offered to look after luggage so that they can do something else with the day
- suggested a choice of local restaurants that are pleasant places to wait, whatever the weather.

So in your case, make sure they have a plan for if she is late or can't make it, including a list of possible accommodations. Because dealing with worried people (who you WANT to help) whilst in the middle of a tight changeover is no fun.

And make sure that if she is late, the daughter picks them up from the cafe, and then collects luggage from yours! We had some guests come back to the chalet an hour before they were finally collected, it started raining so I had to invite them into our place, as everyone wanted to use the loo and the main chalet bathrooms were already cleaned, had to make them tea, our own house is not at all suitable for kids so it was all a bit difficult. I didn't mind, but it all took time, on a busy changeover!


Advance planning is the key! Hopefully you won't need it. Smile
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Woz



Joined: 14 Nov 2016
Posts: 18
Location: Moreton in Marsh, Cotswolds

PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 4:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We have had a similar challenge recently and we did pretty much exactly what Giraffe suggested. We have an arrangement with a local pub/ hotel whereby in some circumstances they help us out with lunches/ drinks and luggage storage when needed in emergencies etc.

In our recent example, some excellent guests needed lunch/ drinks for a while before they were able to get their train back to London.

I've found our relationship with the local pub/ hotel to be invaluable. They were great, for example, when our cleaners recently forgot a changeover and guests arrived to a cottage which had not been cleaned/ changed for them. We apologised, sent them to the pub while the cleaners did a thorough changeover and called the pub to put some money behind the bar for them to have a meal and some drinks while they waited. The guests were delighted and left us a great review after their 'ordeal'.
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akwe-xavante



Joined: 01 Jul 2015
Posts: 253
Location: East Yorkshire

PostPosted: Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you all for your replies.

I very much like the idea of moving them on out of the cottage by way of offering lunch. A much more pleasant way of doing it without basically saying its time you left kind of approach.

I'll be visiting on Wednesday next week, Garden Maintenance day. I'll set aside a little time to explore what the local pubs have to offer in the way of luggage storage and or accommodation just in case etc etc.

Thank you
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JanB



Joined: 17 Aug 2012
Posts: 510
Location: Near Bath

PostPosted: Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very valid comments and certainly I would be inclined to ensure they do not need to come back for any reason, so the luggage being taken with them and stored at the pub or restaurant is a perfect solution to get them off your premises and no delays on your time later.

It is always tricky on changeover day, if you get people staying on and many times I have had the "we just need to use the loo" scenario when coming back to collect luggage and your heart sinks as you know you cannot refuse but all your hard work is undone.... doesnt sound like much but it is so infuriating!

Oh, the hoops we have to jump through.

Seems like the modern world is making people more demanding and less considerate...I was checking out of an hotel yesterday a very irate guest was trying to check in at 9.00am and would not understand that the room would not be ready until after 2.00pm - he was absolutely FURIOUS!
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