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Families have been eagerly awaiting the longest break of the school year, especially as it is hoped that summer 2021 will bring a decrease in COVID infection rates. This means demand for child-friendly vacation rentals. 

But, the question is, how can you tailor your vacation rental experience to the needs of Gen-Z travelers, who are increasingly taking the lead on decisions related to multi-generational vacations? 

Fun and engaging experiences aside, one thing is for sure, spurred by COVID-19, these ‘zoomers’ are looking to mitigate travel risks. They want reassurance about the safety, cleanliness and convenience of their short-term summer stays. 

This is why vacation rental owners need to pay heed to such heightened expectations or risk losing business to the competition. 

The good news is it’s easy to transform your vacation rental, with property automation and a few other upgrades around the premises, into a destination that receives rave reviews from multi-generational vacationers. 

Here’s our top 5 tips to make your short-term rental family friendly:

1. Safety and reassurance

Come summer, there will be countless occasions where your guests leave the rental to partake in outdoor activities and events. And when families step out, there tends to be a lot of confusion –  especially about who has the keys. Often, they are even misplaced causing guests to be stuck at home until the spare keys arrive or risk burglary or break-ins. Smart keys swoop in to save the day by allowing digitally native Gen Z guests and their families to lock and unlock doors remotely. It’s also quite handy for seamless and touch-free check-in, check-out and deliveries of food and groceries – a necessity during the pandemic. Also, don’t forget to install smart home security systems, smart doorbells and fire and carbon monoxide sensors. 

All this attention to safety at your short-term rental home is sure to keep guests and their valuables safe while guaranteeing a stress-free stay. At the same time, it will protect you (the owners) from expensive lawsuits.  

2. A ‘homely’ guest experience

Vacation rentals can be beautifully and comfortably designed to make families feel right at home. Be sure to spruce up your property with creature comforts like access to broadband, good quality and clean linen, towels and kitchen equipment. You can also save parents of toddlers and infants a lot of trouble by providing highchairs, booster seats and baby cribs. And, if your property has features such as a fridge big enough for a family, a yard for outdoor activities or enough personal space for each family member, be sure to highlight it in your rental listing. 

You could also invest in vacation rental automation, which makes it possible to automatically set the lighting, TV, window treatments and thermostats to each guest’s unique preferences. Convenience and enhanced experience guaranteed! 

3. Child-proofing

If you’re looking to attract families with kids to your rental then it has to be thoroughly child-proofed. That means no dangling cables, open electrical sockets or sharp edges. You could also install child-proof locks and latches on windows and baby gates and rails at the top and bottom of stairs. 

Child-proofing can actually be augmented with property automation. For instance, smart entry sensors by the swimming pool and video baby monitors in the children’s room can all be remotely managed, so guests can constantly track their child’s whereabouts from mobile devices. 

4. Keeping the kids entertained

Most parents are looking for ways to keep boredom at bay for their little ones, especially on school-break vacations. If you can solve this pain-point for them at your rental home, you have won loyal patrons for life. Luckily, all you’ll need to do is provide the likes of toys, bikes, children’s scooters, swimming floats and in-room entertainment options like video games, board games and books.

Also, remember, children are influencing travel decisions that their parents or families make. And for them, fun comes first. So, it would be a good idea to tie-up with local children’s activity providers like petting zoos and amusement parks to offer your guests special discounts or offers.

5. Cleanliness

Families can be a rambunctious lot. The odd spill, messy hand prints and tracked dirt are to be expected, especially if you are hosting minors. Smart home features like robot vacuum cleaners can automatically detect dirt and clean it up, without you or the guest having to lift a finger. Talk about cleanliness and comfort rolled into one. Smart keys also help you maintain social distancing rules and sanitation by only allowing maintenance staff to enter the rental premises when the guests are not home.

Vacation rental automation is the answer

It’s 2021, and you can’t think of smart home automation as a gimmick or a luxury anymore. It’s a necessity to ensure families enjoy a safe, fun-filled and child-friendly vacation rental experience. 

Smart amenities will help impress your guests, attract more bookings to your rental and encourage glowing reviews. Going that extra mile with your vacation rental automation can also save you a lot of money and time!