Holiday Let Welcome Pack Ideas

You might think that securing bookings is the most important part of owning a holiday let, and don’t get us wrong, it is important! But, once you’ve welcomed guests into your home, it’s essential that you provide a getaway that’s memorable for all the right reasons. This is key when it comes to building good relationships, earning positive reviews, and getting repeat customers. We know that first impressions are important, and the best way to wow your guests is by providing a great welcome hamper.

A thoughtful welcome pack promises to start every stay on a high – from luxury food items to a useful guest information folder, we’ve put together a list of things to put in a hamper, which are sure to put a smile on holiday makers’ faces.

What are holiday let welcome packs?

If you’ve ever stayed in a holiday let, you’ll be familiar with welcome packs; usually comprising edibles and a guest information folder at the bare minimum, the quality varies from place to place, but you can be sure that a top-quality holiday home offers a premium welcome hamper.

It might seem like more effort, but you shouldn’t underestimate the benefits of creating a holiday cottage welcome pack that is personal and brimming with deluxe products. Imagine walking in and seeing a wicker hamper filled with homemade sweet treats, locally sourced eggs, freshly baked bread, and even a bottle of wine. Not only does this provide a great opportunity to promote local businesses, but it shows a level of attentiveness which will no doubt impact a guest’s experience.

What to put in your holiday let hamper?

  • The essentials! Yes, you want to include luxury items in your welcome hamper, but it’s important not to ignore the basics. Guests might not bring staples such as tea, coffee, sugar, and milk and trust us, they’ll probably want a hot drink after their journey.
  • The extra touches. Now is the time to step up your game, and we’re not talking about a packet of digestive biscuits. Homemade cakes will always be a winner, while local produce is sure to be a hit too, whether that’s fresh bread, eggs from a nearby farm, or delicacies such as cheese and chutneys. If the area is famous for something, such as honey, ale, or cider, why not include that, too? It’s a good idea to remember your target audience – if you own a romantic cottage for two, a bottle of bubbly works well, whereas for family homes, treats for the children such as chocolates will put smiles on faces!
  •  A guest information book. It’s commonplace to provide leaflets promoting local attractions, but it shows much more care to create your own bespoke information folder. This could include not only a list of the best nearby restaurants, but sample menus and directions, too. Transport information will also prove useful, as will a rundown of the local attractions. In all cases, make your information book personal by adding anecdotes about why you like said restaurants, and your favourite places to visit.
  • A guest book. It’s great for guests to be able to read about other people’s experiences – not to mention praise – from their stay. Seeing numerous good reviews upon arrival will set the tone for a happy stay, whilst tips from previous guests will also help provide newcomers with ideas for their holiday.

Different types of welcome packs for holiday lets

There’s no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to holiday home welcome packs, and what works for one holiday home might not work for you. For example, a city apartment for two attracts very different guests to a cosy Cotswold cottage, so it makes sense that the welcome hampers will be different too! Here are some ideas for different situations…

Breakfast hamper ideas

By the time guests arrive – generally in the afternoon – they will probably want to relax and explore the local area. It saves them a job if they’re provided with a breakfast hamper, meaning no rushed supermarket trips to stock up for the morning. Tea and coffee welcome packs are a great idea, while the addition of fresh juice ensures that everyone will have something to drink! Food-wise, think cereals, bread, croissants, fruits… the possibilities are endless! 

Local food hamper ideas

Guests are on holiday to experience what the area has to offer, and the welcome pack provides a great opportunity to showcase local businesses and produce. As mentioned above, guests will love to see items that the area is famous for, such as cakes and cheeses. Plus, people like to support independents, and would much rather see a packet of pastries from the local bakery than a packet from the supermarket.

City break hamper ideas

You should tailor your welcome hamper to complement the guest’s experience. For a city break where tourist information can be overwhelming, good transport information such as maps and timetables will prove very helpful. While there are likely a heap of local attractions and too many to list, you could provide a shortlist of the very best, as well as a calendar of events which covers the time period of your guest’s stay.

Country break hamper ideas

A welcome pack for country holiday makers is far easier to personalise – useful guest information would be a list of local pubs and restaurants, as well as nearby attractions and nature sites. If your holiday let is in a popular walking area, you could provide a guide to walking routes.

Homemade simple hamper ideas

The ultimate way to add a personal touch to your welcome hamper is by adding homemade goods – and don’t panic, these don’t have to be Masterchef-worthy desserts or artisan ales. A simple Victoria sponge or banana bread will be just as much of a hit with guests. Or, why not perfect a simple recipe that you can make in batches and keep – granola is surprisingly easy to cook up, while jam can be cooked in huge quantities, meaning you won’t have to repeat the process with each and every guest.

Things to think about when creating your welcome hamper

Aside from the content itself, there are a few additional things to consider when making your holiday home welcome pack. First and foremost, think about what your guests will actually want. Your holiday home might be located next to a lavender field, but sprigs of lavender probably won’t be of much use, whereas a lavender-scented bar of soap will be.

We know that food and drink are the key to most people’s hearts, but again, go for crowd-pleasers – bread and biscuits are a staple, whereas blue cheese and strong pâtés won’t be palatable to everyone.

Be conscious of any guest allergies or if they’ve made any specific requests; it won’t look very thoughtful if you provide peanut butter cookies to those with nut intolerances, or alcohol to those who don’t drink.

When it comes to standing out from the competition, you’ll get the biggest brownie points for a welcome hamper that’s personalised, luxurious… or both! A handwritten note which names your guests shows that you aren’t simply churning out another hamper without thought. If you know that children or dogs are joining the party, why not give them a mention, or include a treat for them, too.

Lastly, it’s time to be savvy and team up with local businesses. It’s worth taking the time to liaise with independents eateries and shops for some mutually beneficial promotion. If you include information about the village pub in your holiday cottage, they might agree showcase your holiday let on their website, for example.

Your holiday cottage welcome pack template

The welcome letter

A warm welcome sets the holiday off on a right note and puts the host in the good books! As we mentioned, a heading addressed to each individual guest adds that little touch of friendliness, while a little personal information about you and your home makes everything feel a bit more homely.

Essential information

It’s only once you’ve introduced yourself that your guest information book should delve into the important details. Try to keep these clear and concise, providing everything guests will need, without covering 20 pages that they won’t bother to read.

  • Your contact details (or those of the holiday letting agency, should you have one) should be given, as well as a list of other emergency contacts such as doctors, hospitals, and plumbers.
  • Rules and regulations should be stipulated, although you should be careful not to sound too strict! Pets off the furniture, parking restrictions, noise considerations, and so on.
  • Property information is fundamental, as you don’t want guests to get frustrated when they can’t work the oven, access the internet, or turn the heating down. Make sure to provide all of the necessary instruction manuals, although these can go at the back of your guest information book, as they hopefully won’t be needed in full!
  • Health and safety information has to be provided, and this covers everything from access information to gas and electrics. Remember to warn guests of potential hazards such as steep staircases or precarious flagstones, and make sure to provide a first aid kit.

Tourist information

Your holiday let welcome pack should include local information spanning attractions and amenities, food and drink, and transport options.

  • From basics such as supermarkets, post offices and pharmacies, to tourist traps such as nature parks, your guest information book should cover it all! Remember when compiling your list of places to go and things to do, who your guests are likely to be; if you’re likely to attract families, it’s important to include children-friendly activities, even if they may not be the best thing that the area has to offer.
  • Food and drink always form such an integral part of a holiday, so guests will want to discover all the best places to go. It’s the perfect opportunity to promote local independents, and you own favourites too. Again, it can be useful, if needed, to add information about which eateries are dog and child friendly.
  • Even if the area is easy to drive around, providing local transport information is a good idea. You don’t need to find out every timetable but give details of the nearest bus stop or train station, as well as boat rides, should there be any.

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FCA disclaimer

The information contained in this article is accurate at the time of writing, based on our research. Rules, criteria and regulations change all the time and so please speak to one of our Consultants to confirm the most accurate up to date information. Nothing in this article constitutes financial advice. You understand that by clicking any external links on this page that you will be leaving the website of Holiday Cottage Mortgages and we cannot be held responsible for the content of this external website. Please always consult your accountant or solicitor for all financial, taxation or legal matters.