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Late Arrival
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Nemo



Joined: 14 Aug 2008
Posts: 7039
Location: Norfolk

PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anglo Dutch, I don't think it's meant as either discourtesy or arrogance. Llanthony I don't think your guests couldn't care less about the impact. They simply didn't understand. More and more guests are used to turning up somewhere and letting themselves in. I too, hate to be tied down to arrival times; I can understand why they are needed when you are a B&B and coming into someone's house, but I do really appreciate all the places that allow me to come and go as I please. I often want to visit somewhere en route, or perhaps need a meal before arriving at the destination.

If it's possible, I would definitely opt for a keysafe. You can check on guests by text if needs be or perhaps arrange a visit the morning after arrival, but in all honesty a really good welcome folder and clear instructions should mean anyone can turn up and settle straight into their holiday without the need to have a meet and greet. I've turned up at places in the early hours of the morning, in the dark, in a completely foreign place and just got on with it. Smile
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Hells Bells



Joined: 30 Apr 2005
Posts: 13148
Location: French Alps

PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Everything seemed to have been OK when M wasn't able to do meet and greet recently, apart from the dog they brought with them without mentioning it of course. Hair everywhere, and they didn't pay the additional cleaning charge. They'd been given back the cheque for the damage deposit as everything looked ok until the furniture was moved. That's what worries me about the key safe. Will they overoccupy, bring a dog or two, etc?
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French Cricket



Joined: 10 Apr 2008
Posts: 3061
Location: French Pyrénées

PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Those of you who know me of old will know that my 'default position' is very much about relationships with guests.

This year we're letting our second, off-site cottage, three and a half hours away. It's only let to past guests at on-site Ariège gîte, so everyone who stays there knows us, though some have brought friends who don't. I'm doing the changeovers myself (we're only letting for 10 weeks a year) but I'm using a key safe rather than meeting and greeting, for the first time ever.

I wondered how our guests would take it, as they've been used to our very hands-on approach. The upshot is that they love it. They love not having to worry about having to arrive between certain hours or to let me know if they get held up. They love not having to feel guilty if they stop off for a beer en route. And the feedback I've had has been really positive, to the point where next year I'm going to stop having a check-in slot in our on-site gîte and just catch up with guests the next day.

I don't tell them until a week before their arrival day that it's key safe entry. That way there is little time to organise over-occupation or suddenly bring 17 dogs.

So far, no disasters, just happy guests. So I've had to eat my hat.
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Holiday retreat for grown-ups in the French Pyrenees
French Foothills
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Martha



Joined: 16 Apr 2006
Posts: 2206
Location: Chamonix

PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another vote for a key safe!
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AngloDutch



Joined: 11 Jul 2014
Posts: 690
Location: Netherlands

PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nemo wrote:
Anglo Dutch, I don't think it's meant as either discourtesy or arrogance. Llanthony I don't think your guests couldn't care less about the impact. They simply didn't understand. More and more guests are used to turning up somewhere and letting themselves in. I too, hate to be tied down to arrival times; I can understand why they are needed when you are a B&B and coming into someone's house, but I do really appreciate all the places that allow me to come and go as I please. I often want to visit somewhere en route, or perhaps need a meal before arriving at the destination.

If it's possible, I would definitely opt for a keysafe. You can check on guests by text if needs be or perhaps arrange a visit the morning after arrival, but in all honesty a really good welcome folder and clear instructions should mean anyone can turn up and settle straight into their holiday without the need to have a meet and greet. I've turned up at places in the early hours of the morning, in the dark, in a completely foreign place and just got on with it. Smile



Nemo, we do have a keysafe but we only use it when we're away and we won't get to meet the guests at all or maybe later on during their stay. Unless the guests have said that they will be arriving after 10 p.m. we wouldn't use the keysafe if we're on site. From experience, if we're not there to meet and greet, then things can go wrong immediately which can cause problems for us. Examples like parking in the wrong place and blocking our access to the street, meaning we have to bang on the door at 7.30 when my OH is unable to go to work. Also, parking in the neighbours' spaces across the road which results in an angry phone call from our neighbours when guests have parked there and either blocked them in or out.

What others have said about over occupancy and guests bringing pets when we are not prepared for them is something that worries us as well.

We put all this information into our house notes of course, for all to read. Sites like ABB even send them along with the confirmation of course, but how many people read what you send them and how many guests bother to read the house notes when they're staying.

We can understand that many owners are off-site and have no choice unless they get someone to go up to their property and wait on the guests, or that they live nearby and find that a key safe works for them, but there is too much info that we have to verbally give to guests, especially international visitors, who will otherwise cause too much damage in the property if they just walk in. Examples such as not understanding how to open our windows and breaking the mechanism, removing all the infant locks from the AC sockets because they have no idea what they are, plugging 110 volt hairdryers directly into our mains system just using a socket adapter or switching on the dishwasher, washing machine and dryer at the same time which will blow the fuses. These are all examples of what has occurred when we weren't there to explain things to at least the first guests to arrive (and who we'd hope would have passed the information along) Shocked

There is always time later to answer questions that guests have or to explain how the recycling works before it goes wrong. It's just knowing what can go wrong the first night when they arrive that has us firmly against using a key safe. Crying or Very sad
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