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5 Hospitality Phrases Guests Remember Most

Hospitality? Dictionary definition: “the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.”

The Bible points to hospitality as a spiritual gift, with instructions such as, “Treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you”; “Show hospitality to one another without grumbling”; and “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”

Buddhists hold a similar view of hospitality, a.k.a. sakkàra, which is described as the act of being welcoming and helpful to guests, strangers, and travellers.

In the travel industry, service and hospitality are often interchangeable, but the two are different concepts. Service can be defined as the act of providing a service, whereas hospitality is the cordial attitude of the person providing the service.

Being hospitable is easier for some people than it is for others. Easier, or not...these 5 phrases are what guests will remember most:

1. “Welcome…”

We don’t get a second chance to make a first impression. The first interaction with guests is all we have to make them feel at home. This is why we should never forget to give all our guests a warm welcome – no matter how tired we may be.

You can be creative with this one. You can say, “Welcome to your second home in (insert the name of your city.” The important thing is to exude warmth and for your guests to feel that they are in a place where they belong. 

2. “It’s My Pleasure…” / “I Am Happy To…”

Having a service-oriented work disposition is very important for us working in the hospitality industry. Guests stay with a mindset that their needs will be catered to. They expect the people tending to them will exude a certain level of joy in doing so.

Telling your guests that it gives you pleasure or happiness to take care of them rubs off on them – meaning, they would feel more positive because they know that the people attending to them are happy to do so. They will feel more comfortable reaching out to you and your staff for their needs, as opposed to keeping their concerns to themselves, which can lead to bad reviews later on. 

3. “Is There Anything Else…”

Sometimes, guests hold back on their requests because they don’t want to be perceived as demanding or imposing. At the end of the day, this is a lose-lose situation both for the host and the guests. The guests don’t get what they want and the host is perceived in a less positive way.

4. “Thank You…” / “We Appreciate…”

Technically, our guests don’t owe us anything. They are paying for their stay and we have to make sure that they get their money’s worth.

On the other hand we owe everything to our guests. Travellers will only return where they feel that their business is appreciated. This is why every opportunity we get, we have to thank them. Thank them during check-in. Thank them during check-out. Thank them when they give you feedback and thank them when they say nice things about you. A simple “Thank You” can go a long way in terms of building a lasting relationship with guests.

5. “We’re Looking Forward To Having You Again As Our Guest”

Again, a simple expression that goes a long way. Of course, you want your guests to book with you repeatedly every time they travel to your area. But you have to say it. Never assume that this is already a given and that your guests don’t need to hear it. In fact, if you don’t say this, you might just make your guests feel that you did not enjoy having them in your property.

You can also say: “We look forward to hosting…”

In the hospitality industry, these expressions are definitely more than just words. They articulate your passion to serve your guests. They establish your willingness to give them the best experience you can. These words show your gratefulness that they chose your property among the many options available.

The more closely the host can align hospitality-oriented goals with its base, the more successful the company will be in the face of marketplace shifts like the those expected to emerge in the vacation rental industry.