Airbnb Essentials: The Ultimate Must-Have Guide for Hosts

Discover what are the absolute must-haves for Airbnb vacation rentals.

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Get more tips & ideas in our Airbnb Host Checklist!

There are certain items and amenities that every vacation rental simply can’t do without. Skipping these essentials can lead to unhappy guests, negative reviews, and a slump in business. 

So, what exactly should you be covering? 

In this guide, we’ll walk you through the Airbnb essentials that every host should have in their rental. Let’s get started!

How We Make Our Recommendations

Here’s how we decide which products make our top picks list:

  • Feedback from 200+ Hosts: our Vacation Rental Inventory Spreadsheet has been downloaded and used by hundreds of hosts like you. We update it regularly based on the feedback we get.
  • Online Reviews: we scour the internet for product reviews from real Airbnb hosts.
  • Forums and Communities: we spend a lot of time in online forums and communities for vacation rentals, to see which products get recommended the most.
  • Suitability: products you buy for your Airbnb need to be durable, affordable, and easy to clean. We keep all these factors in mind when making our recommendations.

What Are Considered Essentials in an Airbnb?

Essentials are just the basics guests expect during their stay. People choose Airbnb for that home-away-from-home feel, so you should make sure they have all they need for a comfortable stay. 

Getting these basics right can prevent those dreaded 1-star reviews, but if you’re aiming for glowing reviews, you have to go beyond the basics. Check out our post on how to make your rental stand out if you want to upgrade your rental and boost your bookings.

What Do I Need to Provide for Airbnb?

When you’re prepping your Airbnb, think about what would be useful and practical for guests. The bare minimum includes:

  • Hot water
  • Toilet paper
  • Soap (for hands and body)
  • One hand towel per guest
  • One bath towel per guest
  • One pillow per guest
  • Linens for each guest bed

These are the essentials Airbnb mentions, but most guests expect a bit more nowadays. Here’s what they typically look for:

  • Toiletries
  • Hangers
  • Well-equipped kitchen or a kitchenette
  • Basic pantry items (coffee, tea, sugar, salt, pepper)
  • Air conditioning and/or heating
  • Wifi
  • Cleaning supplies (vacuum cleaner, broom, mop, disinfectant)

What else you provide depends on the type of rental and how long guests are staying. For example, if you’re running a bed and breakfast and guests are staying a week or longer, their essentials might differ from someone booking an overnight stay in a city apartment.

Airbnb Essentials

Now, let’s go over a checklist of must-haves per room. If you’re just starting, our Airbnb host checklist has you covered with everything you need to prepare your rental, not just essentials.

Living Room Essentials

You can keep things simple for the living room, but make sure it’s comfortable. Still, there are a few must-have items you should always provide in your Airbnb living room:

Couch and coffee table in Airbnb - best coffee table for Airbnb vacation rental
  • TV
  • Air conditioning and/or heating

Kitchen Essentials

If you’ve got a kitchen in your Airbnb, here’s what you need to keep it functional:

Dining Room Essentials

If your rental doesn’t have a dining area, you can simply move these essentials to the kitchen instead. Here’s what you’ll want to have:

  • Dining table 
  • Chairs
  • Highchair or booster seat is you often host families with children

Bedroom Essentials

Your guests’ comfort starts with a cozy bedroom. Here’s what you’ll need to make it feel like home:

Bathroom Essentials

When it comes to bathrooms, guests primarily expect cleanliness, but they will also appreciate having these essentials on hand:

Aibnb bathroom - vacation rental bathroom checklist

Airbnb Amenities

If you’d like to set your Airbnb apart from the competition, you should invest in amenities. Guests really value these extras and they have the power to turn a solid 4-star stay into an exceptional 5-star review. 

We’ve put together a complete list of Airbnb amenities, covering everything from the essentials to unique touches, so be sure to take a look. But for now, let’s go over some of the most popular amenities:

Where to Buy Airbnb Essentials

It’s important to know where to shop for Airbnb essentials if you’d like to stay within a budget. For starters, look for bulk discounts at wholesale retailers like Costco or Sam’s Club for items like toiletries and cleaning supplies. 

When it comes to furniture, our top pick is Inhaven, since it’s the place where you can get high-quality furniture at great prices. (Editor’s note: Head on over to our in-depth Inhaven review!). You can also check out Wayfair and Ikea for furniture basics.

If you’re not a fan of hopping from store to store, Amazon is our top recommendation. They’ve got everything you could possibly need, including bulk packages like bulk shampoo, body wash, toilet paper, and even boxes of snacks.

Final Thoughts

There you have it. These are the must-have essentials that guests just can’t do without. After you set the foundation, you can make the upgrades whenever you want and add some of those sought-after amenities. What’s most important here is that you always have your target guests in mind. Put yourself in their shoes and imagine their stay at your rental, and this can spark countless ideas for improvement.

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