Airbnb In The UAE: How To Be The Perfect Host
Airbnb offers residents of the United Arab Emirates a platform to welcome people from around the world into their homes and make some extra cash while mastering their inner host. While this might sound a little daunting at first, it is actually remarkably simple to become a host. All it takes is some initial registration, openness to new experiences, and basic hosting etiquette. Here are 10 steps that every host must consider as they move up the ranks of hosting to reach Superhost status.
Do Your Research and Evaluate Your Home
Look at similar properties listed on the platform. Consider the size, location and market value of your home. Is there a gym and pool in your building, or can your guests see Burj Khalifa from your balcony? If so, this would give your property extra points on the desirability scale and places listing price in your favour. However, make sure that your asking price is still reasonable.
Have an Open Door, And an Open Heart
Make sure that you have the visually appealing images, as well as a detailed and accurate description of your property to generate traffic and interest in your home. You will be contacted by people from different cultures and backgrounds, so keep an open heart and an open mind and enjoy meeting people from around the globe!
Be on Time
Don’t be offended if your guest is late, however: they might have stopped for refreshments or been delayed en route. While as the host you should be on time, be mindful that precise timings for guests are less critical in certain cultures, and that they might just be in their laid-back holiday spirit. Nonetheless, as the host, it is essential to ensure that you don’t keep them waiting for you, and that you failing to show up on time might leave some awkward first impressions.
Give Good Greetings
A polite greeting will set a hospitable tone, but if you insist on getting physical, a handshake is the safest option. If you’re unsure what is appropriate, take your cue from your guest. Physical contact between members of the opposite sex is not always appropriate in Arabic cultures, so if a handshake is not offered, simply nod and smile warmly.
Prepare Some Home Comforts
And while your guest won’t be expecting embroidered thrones and gilt chandeliers, comfortable surroundings will be a welcome haven after a long journey. Consider providing refreshments to greet your guests. You could also stock up on basics like butter and bread to enable them to postpone a trip to the supermarket. Overseas visitors may particularly appreciate quintessentially Emirati touches – dates, regional treats, or Arabic coffee, for example.
Explain the Amenities
Leave your guests a manual or instructions detailing Wifi login details, plus information on how to work the bath, shower and any appliances. Sharing the login details to your movie streaming service would make your guests appreciate the extra effort even more!
Give Your Guests Space
If you are homesharing, or if your guests are staying in the neighbouring property, try to adapt your routine to that of your guests. Give them space and be sensitive to jet lag and time differences: check that it’s OK to use the hoover or play music before disturbing a siesta.
Share Local Secrets
If you’re hosting in Dubai, offer city maps and consider providing pre-paid RTA cards, restaurant vouchers or gym membership cards. Recommend travel apps to help your guests find their way around. Share your favourite local eating spots, or the neighbourhood mosque for Friday prayers.
Be Big Day Ready
Dubai is a place that attracts millions of visitors who take photos, with numerous landmarks that make for once-in-a-lifetime photos. Make sure they have everything they need to look photo-ready: a full-length mirror, wardrobe space, and plug converters for hairdryers and straighteners.
Ensure a Smooth Departure
Help your guests have a smooth onwards journey by researching transport to the airport or train station, or by booking a taxi for them. Arrive in good time to collect the keys or leave instructions about where they should be left if you are unable to say goodbye in person. A parting gift will make a thoughtful souvenir of your guests’ stay, but should be portable and aircraft friendly – no liquids, heavy objects or breakables.