Checking In Your Guests

Most hosts tell their guests to check-in in the afternoon, although guests may often ask for an earlier or later check-in. You can provide it to them if you’d like, but it’s best to be firm in your timeframe. You want to stress to guests that they should contact you immediately if they’re running late, and give a timeframe for when you’ll leave the property if you’re personally handing over the key.

As for handing over the key itself, there are a number of different options that you can choose from. The most traditional is simply handing over the key yourself, and this remains a great way to meet your guest and answer any last questions. People may feel more responsive to your rules if they see the person behind them, and it can go a long way in improving their experience. Depending on your schedule, you can even meet them at the bus stop and walk them to your place.


However, you may not always have the time or desire to hand the key over or wait for their arrival. In these situations, you can use a number of services and devices that make your life easier. The first and most common is using a lockbox on your property to store the key. These lockboxes are discreet, safe, and come with a personalized code that you can send to your guests prior to their arrival. They simply enter the code, remove the key from the box, and then place it back inside upon departure. You can then change the lockbox code before the next guests arrive to ensure nobody else returns.

Third Party Key Holders

There are countless third-party systems that can store and deliver your key as necessary. KeyCafe is easily the most popular system, and it works as a local locker system that holds your key and provides guests with a temporary passcode to access it. To use KeyCafe, you can choose from three different pricing systems like Pay as You Go, Basic Key, or Unlimited Key.

If there’s a KeyCafe in your area, look through the pricing system to see which works best for your renting schedule and budget, and make sure that the overall price doesn’t eat into your profit margin. Luckily, the prices are relatively fair and may be cheaper than the cost of gasoline, public transportation, or time that you’d spend waiting for guests. These types of systems also remove the frustration of waiting for late guests, and this will make you and your guests much more relaxed!

Remote & Smart Locks

Remote locks are another innovative system that can tremendously enhance your Airbnb experience. Companies like Remote Lock and Smart Locks allow you to access your door’s lock online and create a unique passcode. Simply change the code once the previous guests leave, and then send the new one to your incoming guests before they arrive. This again reduces the need to wait for tardy guests, and your guests will also feel more relaxed since they no longer have to rush to your property.

These smart locks can also be customized to allow access for cleaning crews and more. The provided apps also feature extensions for when guests are allowed to stay longer. Best of all, you won’t have to worry about guests losing a physical key in the middle of the night ever again!

The installation and use of these locks is extremely simple as well. The door handle and combined lock connects to your WiFi, and you can control everything from the included app. Some companies, like Remote Lock and Smart Lock, also work directly with Airbnb so you can connect your lock directly to your profile. This allows the lock to automatically create a code once a guest books a room, and that code will only work from the check in time upon their arrival until their departure. Upgrades include features like viewing access history in real-time, deadbolts, and more depending on your needs.

Due to the ease of use, relatively inexpensive cost, and outstanding user experience, these smart locks may be the best choice for hosts with busy schedules, and for those who are tired of waiting for guests to arrive later than planned.