As the owner of a vacation rental, you know for a fact that traveling is no longer as unattainable a luxury as it once was in the past. Nowadays, there are many more people who travel – at home and abroad – for both leisure and business reasons.
Moreover, guests no longer only travel once a year in the summer, but instead, they may take a few different trips year-round. This mentality has normalized travel, making it a way of life for some. Though for many others, it still remains an ideal way to disconnect from the real world.
The image that immediately comes to mind when we think about traveling is often a group of friends, a couple or a family. So, what about those who love to go out and explore the world, but don’t have a partner to join them?
This is where the concept of the solo traveler comes in. Whatever their reason for traveling alone, this type of guest demographic is starting to represent an increasingly growing proportion of travelers, as more and more people are deciding to go on lone adventures with just themselves for company. In fact, roughly one in four people say they will take a solo trip this year!
Because of this, you want your vacation rental to be an interesting option for these new types of travelers, as it can increase your bookings and, as a result, your rental income. So, how can you market your property to solo travelers? By following our advice below.
What kind of guest is a solo traveler?
To determine how to attract this kind of guest to your property, you have to ask yourself what reasons they may have for traveling alone. It may be that they don’t have anyone to travel with, or they simply prefer to travel by themselves for total cultural immersion in a new city or country. Another possibility is that the guest is traveling for business for an extended stay, and might prefer the amenities and home comforts of a vacation rental.
It’s also important to consider what solo guests might expect from their trip. Do they prefer to discover places on their own without being disturbed, or are they looking to socialize with locals from the area?
As a vacation rental owner, you may host solo travelers from either of these subgroups – so your role is to be prepared for either situation.
Detect the lone traveler’s needs
To offer the best service and guest experience, it’s necessary to put yourself in the guest’s shoes and ask yourself: what would you expect from a vacation rental, or what services would be most useful to you?
Offer the option of breakfast
Many guests choose vacation rentals over hotels for the simple fact of having access to a kitchen, and being able to cook if they need it – either to make the vacation a bit more budget-friendly or for pure convenience. Groups and families are, of course, accustomed to stocking up the fridge upon arrival (even before heading out to see the sights!). But what about a solo traveler who is only staying a few days? They might not want to buy tons of food or other basic supplies for fear it will go to waste.
Therefore, offering the option of breakfast included in the nightly price can be an additional motivator for solo guests who won’t be sharing shopping costs with others.
Provide individual services
Remember, traveling alone is very different from traveling in a group. Even buying the basics can really add up, because of the large quantities that supplies like toilet roll come in. For this reason, think about offering all the essentials – such as shampoo, shower gel, toothpaste, toilet paper and other bathroom supplies – free of charge.
You can also go another step further and offer additional services, such as the possibility of using a bicycle to move around the city. They’ll surely appreciate this gesture, as they won’t have anyone to split taxi costs with!
A vacation rental can work out to be a more affordable option for a solo traveler, especially when the host offers all those things that, when traveling with a group of family or friends, aren’t usually an issue cost-wise.
When traveling alone, your guest will want to make sure (more than ever!) that everything is in order with your accommodation, and that they are aware of all any house rules for your property (such as check-in/out conditions, garbage disposal and so on).
You will have to be more clear and communicative than ever with your solo guests, making them feel important and offering them the help they need at all times. If they contact you with any questions, try to answer as soon as possible.
You should also be prepared to recommend places and plans that are suitable for a single person, or suggest activities and places where the guest could socialize with other people or travelers in the area.
Offer various entertainment options
Someone who travels alone may spend more time in the vacation rental. They’re likely to arrive home earlier after a long day of sightseeing, rather than spend the night out on the town as a group might. As a result, there may be big portions of time that the guest spends simply relaxing up at your property.
How can you transform your home into more than just a place where your guest can rest their head? By offering ways to have fun and hang out, even if it’s solo! Tired travelers may want to read, watch television, catch up on a few episodes of their favorite series, or even play a video game. So, create a cozy reading corner, plug in the PlayStation and make sure you have cable TV or an on-demand service like Netflix.
And, don’t forget to provide good WiFi signal! This may be the most crucial amenity for those guests traveling unaccompanied, and perhaps even a decisive element when choosing a property or writing a review at the end of their stay.
Make it clear that your property is not only for couples or groups
When marketing your vacation rental on your own website or any other listing platforms, you need to ensure it’s obvious that your property is also apt for solo travelers – as well as groups, couples and so on.
In addition to describing all the services you offer, make sure your listings not only show photos of groups or families, but also some images of solo travelers enjoying your facilities or exploring the local area.
Sell the local culture
When writing about your first-class services and the exquisite interior design of your vacation rental in your property description, you should also be sure to include references to the area and location.
Sure, your guests have already decided where to spend their vacation, so they don’t need to be convinced on the area. However, by positioning yourself as the expert of your location, who can recommend experiences, the least touristic spots and places where they can sample the finest local cuisine, guests will really appreciate it!
The great thing about solo travelers is that you, the host, know they are really interested in that location – because they’re deciding to explore it alone. Be creative in your descriptions, so your guest can imagine exactly how their stay will be at your property.
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