Shorter days, lower temperatures, fewer bookings. Winter is often a quiet time for holiday let owners, but it doesn’t have to be!
While fewer families travel out of season, couples, retirees and outdoor types will still be looking to get their fix of holiday R&R, and appealing to their love of walking is a great way to entice them to your property.
As temperatures plunge and the nights draw in, people spend more time indoors and get less sunlight and so many holidaymakers will be seeking an escape from the winter gloom.
They’ll be looking to swap their stuffy office for open countryside, their commuting route for a rural trail and their hectic home for a convenient and ultra-cosy cottage. Your holiday property could let them do just that, with these 10 simple steps:
- Let them make fire! The rich heat, earthy aroma and satisfying crackling sounds of a real fire are intoxicating. They exude cosiness and provide the perfect end to an action-packed day. Log burners and open fires are among the most searched for features at cottages.com in winter, and by having one you’ll increase your property’s year-round appeal.
- Have a hot tub. Another feature everyone loves, hot tubs are as indulgent in winter as they are in summer. In fact, the crisp air makes the warm water feel even more satisfying. Although they’re an investment, they can make a significant difference to your bookings, especially in quieter periods.
- Make your beds extra cosy. Winter walkers are going to need somewhere comfy and toasty warm to rest their heads after a long day. Fresh, clean bedding is a given but what about a double/winter duvet, extra blankets or a mattress topper to make their sleep extra restful? Guests often note the quality of bedding in their reviews which can help influence your future bookings.
- Promote local walks. Your welcome pack isn’t just for coffee and cake, it’s your chance to showcase all the nearby walking trails and scenic landmarks that make your holiday home special. Include maps, books and personal recommendations to help your guests create their ideal outdoor adventure.
- Stock the fridge. The perfect accompaniment to your welcome pack, a well-stocked fridge shows you care. Of course, you don’t need to fill it! Some milk, eggs, chocolate or wine and a few ingredients for their first evening meal will help your guests’ walking holiday get off on the right foot.
- Include little luxuries. Providing flasks and hand warmers for walks, and bubble baths for relaxation are small and thoughtful touches that can make a big difference to your guests’ comfort and happiness.
- Entertain them. For some, a roaring fire and great company is all the entertainment they need. But other guests, especially ones with kids, need extra amusements for the long winter evenings. They’ll specifically look out for properties that feature a HDTV, games console and Blu-ray player, which can make investing in these items worthwhile.
- Be Pet-friendly. Welcoming dogs to your holiday home could make a big difference to your bookings. On average, cottages.com properties that accept pets benefit from 4 extra booking weeks per year over those that don’t. It’ll certainly help if you’re trying to appeal to winter walkers!
- Get Festive. While winter months are often quieter and therefore cheaper for holidaymakers, Christmas and New Year are always busy. They offer a lucrative opportunity, but you’ll want to make sure your holiday home is suitably festive to maximise its appeal. At cottages.com we have a “Decorated at Christmas” feature, which customers can use to find properties that have a Christmas tree, a wreath and an oven big enough for their turkey!
- Capture the moment. The Christmas tree is decorated and dazzling, the mistletoe is glowing in the firelight and the snow is softly falling… if your property looks magical take a photo! The wintery imagery will help you market your property more effectively next year. If you’re a cottages.com owner, see our photography guidelines on our owner website for professional tips and advice.
If you’d like to learn more about enticing winter walkers to your holiday let and other methods of boosting your property’s income, then get in touch with our experts on 0345 268 1846 or visit www.cottages.com/let-your-property