Good email communication can greatly help you to enrich Guest Experience. Make reference to these  email checklists and start to create the best possible Guest Experience before, during and after their stay.

No one will deny the importance of email communication in guest experience when it comes to vacation rentals. You use email to confirm bookings and provide detailed information like location, parking as well as the house rules. As standard as the emails could be; however, you will definitely want to go the extra mile to show your guests that you are a warm, welcoming host and your vacation rental is like a home instead of just a hotel room. 

Timely Email Communication For Great Guest Experience

One golden tip is sending the email at the right time! You never want to send guests with detailed information like direction and parking too early that they will forget or too late that they need to email or call you instead. Timely email communication can save you from all these hiccups and help you to build a better guest experience.

With that in mind, a channel manager with a messaging function is crucial for good guest management. It can enable you to email your guests at the right time and give you the ease to manage the guest experience.

Timely Email Communication Is Key

With a Messaging feature, you can save any email templates, easily pull them out for use and personalise it before sending. This greatly saves you time and removes some repetitive tasks from you. 

Remember how timely you respond leaves an important first impression for your guests, and sets the tone for their stay. This can end up having a significant impact on guest reviews and even on your cancellations.

Guest Email Communication Checklist – When To Send and What To Include

Based on our experience with more than 3000 property managers and many individual hosts worldwide, we have consolidated the below email workflow for you to follow step by step, no matter if you are handling instant bookings, request bookings or cancellations. With this email workflow and templates, you can then enhance the guest experience for your vacation rentals.

Depending on the platform or software you use, some of these may be sent automatically.

Instant Booking

  1. Booking confirmation email
    • When: once the booking is received
    • Content:
      • The name of the guest(s)
      • The booking confirmation number
      • The reservation dates
      • Check-in and check-out time
      • The name/address of the vacation rental they have booked
      • Specific details about the rental e.g. bedrooms, amenities, etc.
      • Special request e.g. bed sheets, baby armchair, etc
      • Payment information (deposit, remaining balance, payment schedule and terms)
      • Cancellation policy
      • Any additional measures taken by you due to COVID
      • Your contact info and/or the best way to reach you
  2. Reservation reminder email
    • When: 2 days – 7 days ahead of checking in
    • Content:
      • The name of the guest(s)
      • The booking confirmation number
      • The reservation dates
      • Check-in and check-out time
      • The name and address of the vacation rental they have booked
      • Google maps: [link]
      • Other GPS systems: [link]
      • Driving directions:
      • Parking information 
      • Public transportation directions
      • Any other transportation options
      • House rules 
      • Special measures regarding COVID 
      • Your contact info and/or the best way to reach you

You should also let your guests know if they need to bring anything specific, for example if you require a copy of their ID or cash on arrival for a security deposit.

  1. Welcome email
    • When: the day when the guests check-in  (Some vacation rental managers and hosts will send this email together with address and door code only when they have received the final balance.)
    • Content:
      • Door code
      • Wifi code
      • Detailed directions
      • House manual (reiterate the key rules and policies one more time as a gentle reminder) 
      • Local map and things to do
      • Other up-selling services you may have 
  2. Follow-up welcome email to check everything goes well
    • When: 1 day after the guest check-in (should the guests stay for a longer period like more than a week, you are recommended to send more emails of this type to make sure their stay is good and you can also leverage it to share more local travel tips and up-selling)
    • Content:
      • Checking in if they sleep well
      • Additional sightseeing tips
  3. Before departure email 
    • When: 1 day before departure
    • Content:
      • Check out time
      • What to take note of when leaving the rental
      • Direction to major transportation hub e.g. to airport, train station, the major highway
  4. Thank you for staying & ask for review
    • When: 1 day after checking out (in case there is an issue with the guest, you should address the issue first before sending any thank you/review email.)
    • Content:
      • Thank you 
      • Ask for a review (review link) 
Guest Email Communication Checklist - When To Send and What To Include

Request Booking

Regarding request bookings, the above email workflow and content still applies. But you may want to review the reservation details before confirming the booking and payment process. So you may need to send additional emails before you confirm the bookings. 

  1. Reservation and payment method
    • When: once receive the reservation request
    • Content:
      • The name of the guest(s)
      • Number of guests
      • The reservation dates
      • The name and address of the vacation rental they have requested
      • Payment amount 
      • Payment method
      • How long the rental will be held for the guests until the payment is received
  2. A reminder of booking payment
    • When: 24 hours before reservation expires
    • Content:
      • Payment amount 
      • Payment method


But there may be cases that you could not take the bookings due to unavailability or other reasons. Then you will have to cancel the bookings. Do not feel guilty if you have to do so. Just that you should do it as soon as possible and in a respectful and caring manner. 

  1. Due to lockdown or COVID related matters
    • When: once the government regulation is announced
    • Content:
      • Cancellation reason: COVID situation 
      • Cancellation and refund policy
  2. Due to double bookings
    • When: as soon as you see the overbooking (please check out this article for details of how to avoid double bookings)
    • Content:
      • Cancellation reason: double booking
      • Alternative eg another rental nearby or managed by you 
      • If cancellation is unavoidable, what to do, how to refund

The Ultimate Email Templates For A Good Guest Experience

Many of our vacation rental managers and hosts indeed receive day to day emails that concern the same topics such as directions, parking costs, luggage storage, etc. 

As such, using an email template can allow you to respond to your guests in a couple of clicks, instead of typing the same things again and again. Meanwhile, you can easily edit and personalise the email content to fit the needs. Our email templates and tips can help you to create the best guest experience.

DOs And DON’Ts Of Your Guest Email Communications

To enhance guest email communications, our email templates can be your starting point. You should also review the template every quarter and adjust when you see fit. After all, your email communications should give the human touch and not sound like a robot. This is why people are booking vacation rentals!

DOs And DON’Ts Of Your Guest Email Communications

Here are some Dos and Don’ts: 

  • DOs
    • Use a friendly and warm tone and manner.
    • Sound like a human, not a robot. 
    • Use Relationship, Information, Purpose, Action (RIPA) to structure your email.
      • For example, a Relationship statement can be “Thank you for your booking.”, “We’re excited to receive you at [vacation rental] on [date]!”, “We’re happy to see you enjoying your stay at [vacation rental].”.
      • Information such as the booking information, location and direction information.
      • Purpose: let the guests know what you want them to do or prepare.
      • Action: list the exact action(s) you want them to take and indicate the timeline.
    • List all essential information in bullet points for easy reference. 
    • Reply as soon as you can. But state clearly the business hours so you can better manage the communications.
    • Leave a contact in case of an emergency. 
  • DON’Ts
    • Do not overwhelm your guests with too much information in one go. Break it down into a few emails and send them when a more appropriate time comes.
    • Do not overuse the email templates. Review and personalise them when you see fit. 

Email communication with guests is just part of a daily job of a vacation rental manager or a host. It’s also a crucial part of the guest experience. Our email templates and tips can enable you to make renting simple and create the best guest experience. Download the template now.

The simplest way to create a great vacation rental listing