Vacation Rental Welcome Book: Your Ultimate Guide + Template

Create a vacation rental welcome book that will amaze your guests with our comprehensive guide and free template.

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A well-written welcome book is a must-have if you want your guests to feel right at home in your vacation rental. It’s your opportunity to offer a warm greeting, set clear expectations, and share everything they need to know from how to work the thermostat to the best spots for dining out.

Not sure where to begin or what to include in your welcome book? No problem. Our complete guide has got you covered. 

Let’s uncover the must-have elements and useful writing tips, and you can even grab a free template to get you started.

What’s a Vacation Rental Welcome Book & Why Should You Have It?

A vacation rental welcome book is your guest’s personalized handbook of your property and all the perks of staying there. It’s packed with all the information such as:

  • Essential information and contents
  • How to use amenities
  • Local suggestions to enrich guests’ experience of the area

Why is it so important? It provides guests with all the details they need upfront so they know how to use your amenities and what rules to follow. It can save you both time and hassle by answering common questions before they’re even asked.

Vacation Rental Guidebook: Here’s How to Create One

Let’s not forget that the welcome book can help you stand out among competitors since not everyone invests their time into creating such a thoughtful and informative resource for their guests.

What Should You Include in Your Welcome Book

Let’s start with the key things that you can cover in the welcome book. Keep in mind that you can always add or remove segments to customize it to your property.

Welcome Page

First of all, you want your guests to feel welcomed and informed. That’s why you should dedicate the first page to a warm greeting and the most essential information. 

Even if guests don’t read the whole book, they’ll have what they need right there, so you can relax knowing they’re covered.

Your welcome page should include the following information:

  • A warm greeting 
  • The address of your property
  • Yours or your rental manager’s contact information (phone number and email)
  • Emergency contact numbers (police department, nearest medical clinic or hospital, and fire department)
  • Information about parking
  • Wifi name and password
  • Check-in and check-out times

House Rules

It’s important to set clear expectations to ensure everyone’s comfort and safety. Guests can feel confident knowing what’s expected of them, and you can feel assured that your property will be respected. 

If you’re still unsure what rules to set, you can find helpful ideas in our blog post on how to write vacation rental house rules.

We recommend mentioning:

  • Quiet hours 
  • Rules on smoking
  • Pet policy
  • Rules on having parties or events 
  • Guidelines for disposing of garbage and recycling

Getting Around

Transportation tips are golden for first-time visitors, so guests will appreciate it if you share some local insights. Let them know about the best transportation options, the closest bus or subway stop, and even how to reach the city center.

Here’s what guests might find helpful:

  • Most-affordable taxi services
  • Public transportation routes 
  • Bus schedules
  • Bike rental options
  • Car rental options 
  • Transportation tips 

Local Attractions 

Make your guests’ visit unforgettable by sharing insider tips on must-see attractions. Whether it’s popular tourist spots or hidden gems known only to locals, this section is all about creating memorable experiences for your guests.

Feel free to include anything worth exploring in your area, including things like:

  • Famous landmarks
  • Historical sites
  • Museums
  • Art galleries
  • Seasonal events and festivals
  • Theme parks
  • Outdoor adventures
  • Local hidden gems

Eating and Drinking Recommendations

Make your guests’ day with local dining suggestions that can help them avoid the hassle of hunting for the best spots. Share recommendations for nearby grocery shops, restaurants serving traditional cuisine, your personal favorites, bars, and similar spots.

You can list places like:

  • Popular restaurants 
  • Restaurants with the best traditional cuisine
  • Budget-friendly restaurants
  • Cafes and bakeries
  • Bars, pubs, and nightclubs (if you have younger guests)
  • Specialty food shops (wine stores, cheese shops, gourmet markets, etc.)

Instructions for Appliances and Electronics

While this may be the most tedious section to write, it can save you from phone calls in the middle of the night or unjustified negative reviews, so it’ll be worth it. 

You can provide instructions for:

How to Write a Vacation Rental Welcome Book

Here are some helpful tips 

  • Match the Design: Choose a design that complements your rental’s style, whether it’s cozy and rustic or sleek and modern. This cohesive look adds to the overall experience and makes the welcome book feel like an extension of your property.
  • Stay Focused: Keep your welcome book concise and to the point. Avoid overwhelming guests with unnecessary details and stick to essential information to ensure they can easily find what they need.
  • Keep it Friendly: Write in a warm, approachable tone, like you’re writing to a dear acquaintance to create a friendly atmosphere.
  • Use a Table of Contents: Help guests find what they need quickly by adding a table of contents at the beginning or right after the welcome page.
  • Consider Your Guests: Tailor your welcome book to suit the needs and interests of your typical guests, whether they’re families, outdoor enthusiasts, or spring breakers.
  • Make it Personal: Add a personal touch by sharing interesting facts about your property or including phrases in your guests’ native language. The best place to share this info is on the welcome page.
  • Include Photos: Enhance your welcome book with pictures of your rental, amenities, and nearby attractions to help guests visualize their stay.

Digital vs Printed Welcome Book

A digital welcome book is convenient because guests can access it on their devices anytime, even when they’re away from the rental. You can even make it interactive with clickable links and maps. It will also help you save on printing and laminating.

On the other hand, a printed welcome book has a classic charm, providing guests with something tangible to browse through. It adds a personal touch and doesn’t require any tech skills.

To make your pick, consider what your guests would prefer and what suits your property. For example, a printed book might be a better choice if your rental is a cozy cabin, while a digital guidebook might complement modern rentals more. 

If you choose to go digital, you can use platforms like Touch Stay and Hostfully’s Digital Guidebook to make your guidebook hassle-free. Check out our blog post for step-by-step instructions on creating an interactive welcome book.

Short-Term Rental Welcome Book Template

Here’s a vacation rental welcome book sample you can download to create your own welcome book. Either make the edits in the document or input this text into Canva or a similar design platform, personalize it with your information, including some pictures, and you’ll be all set.

Conclusion

A great welcome book for your vacation rental isn’t just a guide or a manual. It’s a handy compilation of everything your guests need to know, from instructions to local insights to make their stay cozy and unforgettable. This attention to detail boosts your chances of getting 5-star reviews and keeps guests coming back for more.

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