Restoring Traveler Confidence
For the past few years the big buzz-word in travel has been “seamless”. With the influx of on-line booking and the many avenues a traveler has to book a property these days, the expectations of a “seamless” experience from booking to arrival… all the way to departure, has become a more common practice.
Our idea of seamless here at Florida Vacation Connection is better described as “hassle-free”. Meaning, we offer an anxiety-free experience by getting information to our guests in a timely manor so there is no “guessing” when it comes to how they are supposed access the property, report any issues during their stay, and departure procedures.
We like personal contact with our guests. Our office staff is as friendly and hospitable as it gets. Guests walk in our door and are greeted as though they are old friends who just pulled up in the driveway after a 15 hour drive! Face to face contact during check-in has always given us an opportunity to chat about what guests have planned during their stay, if they have any questions about the property, and we love to give out recommendations for the best restaurants and shopping. It’s how we learn about who is staying in our properties and how to better personalize their experience from there.
By order of Sarasota County, seamless became contactless. Meaning, instead of guests picking up with keys from inside our office, they are now instructed to pick them up from a mailbox located outside our front door in a mailbox. Now that Covid-19 has made the world aware of the potential invisible risk associated with physical touch points, the goal of a hands-free experience has become paramount for both travelers and our office staff.
The shift toward contactless technology, such as key-less entry, has been developing in the rental industry for years. It’s certainly something that Florida Vacation Connection had considered and did research on, but it’s not anything we felt was urgent. But the pandemic accelerated our timeline, creating new demand for yet another element of how to keep our guests safe.
We are currently in the process of installing key-less entry on the majority of our single-family homes. We are educating owners on the importance of implementing these changes to help guests feel more confident in the safety of their rentals. We have the cleaning down! But the task of restoring traveler confidence doesn’t stop there.
If we have learned anything over the last few months, it’s that survival in our current state isn’t so much about sacrifice as much as flexibility. While we have made the mandated changes, we have done so in a way that our care and consideration for guests has not been disrupted.
The end goal is so our guests look forward to the trip, feel safe for the duration, and thoroughly enjoy their stay in our properties. Our changes include follow-up phone calls to guests and electronic surveys, more information on-line through our website, in-unit communication, and always follow-up correspondence and requests for feedback so we can continue to adapt our efforts to the needs of our guests.
Guest feedback is so incredibly important, more now than ever. Guests can always send us a general email by following this link, or give us a call at 941-387-9709.