Winter Wonderland or Icy Nightmare? Ensuring Guest Comfort in Snowy Seasons

Wed, January 31, 2024 9:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

The winter storm the Pacific Northwest just experienced was a doozy! Give yourselves a pat on the back for making it through. While we’d love to pretend this kind of storm won’t hit the area again anytime soon, the reality is that it just might happen again next year or even in the next few weeks. 

It's true that a blanket of snow and a crisp chill in the air can create a picturesque setting for your short-term rental, they can also bring unique challenges. As a host, your goal is to ensure your guests have a safe, comfortable, and memorable stay, regardless of the weather outside. While it might be a little late for this round of snow, hopefully these tips will help you create a more positive experience for you and your guests the next time winter weather hits hard.

Proactive Communication

Communication is key! Before your guests arrive, inform them about the potential weather conditions and what they should expect. Setting the right expectations upfront can significantly enhance your guests' experience.

cars driving on snowy roadsThis could include:

  • Road conditions and the need for snow chains or 4WD vehicles to access properties at elevation.

  • Recommendations for warm clothing and snow gear.

  • Information on local services such as emergency contacts, nearby hospitals, and availability of access to groceries and dining options in inclement weather.

Property Preparation

A little preparation can go a long way in ensuring guest comfort:

  • Snow Removal: Keep driveways and walkways clear. Apply salt or sand to walkways to prevent slips and falls. If you can’t do it yourself, find a reliable local contact who can be deployed when you experience accumulation.

  • Heating and Insulation: Check that your property is well-insulated and the heating system is in top shape. A warm and cozy environment is essential. 

  • Emergency Supplies: Stock up on essentials like flashlights, batteries, blankets, a first-aid kit, and basic non-perishable food items.

Power Outage Readiness

woman looking at her cell phone in front of the fireplaceWinter storms can sometimes lead to power outages. Be prepared by:

  • Consider a backup generator or alternative heat sources like wood-burning stoves.

  • If you have a fireplace, consider an annual chimney cleaning to ensure the safety of your property and the health of the guests using it.

  • Maintain a good supply of wood if your property has a fireplace and ensure you have appropriate tools for creating and managing a fire.

Local Resources and Support

Create a list of local resources for your guests and keep that information readily available in your guest handbook and maybe even visible on the refrigerator. Don’t make guests search for the information. Resources might include:

  • The phone number to call in case of emergency. Some international travelers may not be familiar with 9-1-1.

  • The location of the closest emergency service providers like the nearest hospital.

  • The location and normal operating hours of the closest grocery stores and pharmacies.

Being prepared and proactive is the key to successfully managing your rental property during the winter months. Not only does this ensure the safety and comfort of your guests, but it also presents an opportunity to provide a unique and memorable experience.

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