Starting a Bed & Breakfast - Is Running a B&B Right for You?
Starting a Bed & Breakfast | Is Running a B&B Right for Me? | Where Do I Start? | Know Your Markets | Overview of the Tourism Industry in Australia | Join HAA as an Associate Member
Am I the right person for the job?
This is a ‘people’ industry. Hosts should be pleasant, friendly and caring even when they least feel like it. Guests should always be made to feel welcome and comfortable. Personalised, generous hospitality is paramount. Your new business will take up a considerable amount of your time. Will suit your lifestyle?
Am I a committed housekeeper?
In a survey conducted by AAA Tourism, the organisation in Australia responsible for the STAR rating program, 30% of respondents selected cleanliness as their most important determination in choosing accommodation. The next highest determination was location which came in at 15% of respondents. Accommodation that does not meet expectations of hygiene and maintenance reflect badly on the whole industry, draw complaints and will not be recommended by guests to their friends and acquaintances.
Is my property suitable to accommodate guests?
Is your building well maintained with appropriate space for guests in regard to their comfort and privacy? Are there adequate bathrooms, either ensuite or shared by guests (but never shared with the host family)? Do you have a safe environment for your guests? This is especially important on agricultural properties where there may be large animals, dams or farm vehicles operating.
Unless guests are booking for a repeat stay they usually choose to visit a location and then look to see what is available by way of accommodation. City or metropolitan suburban businesses do well with international guests, family reunions, people who are in the area to attend a wedding, party or some other event and business travellers. Businesses in scenic areas within a driving distance of one to two hours of a city or major town tend to do well for weekend getaways and special occasions. Farmstays and accommodation businesses in more remote country areas are more popular longer stay destinations. These are generalities only, but the location of your business will be a very important factor in your marketing considerations.
Why would guests come to my business?
Consider the likely success of a business operating in your locality. Are there local attractions that will bring guests to the area? Will your business depend on those attractions and events and are they seasonal leaving the rest of the year quiet? Are there other guest accommodation businesses nearby? Is there a gap in the market which your business could fill, such as allowing people to bring their pets? An enjoyable and outstanding experience is likely to bring your guests back time and again and they will recommend you to others.
What type of business would suit you and your lifestyle?
A wide range of small to medium accommodation is included in this sector of the tourism industry suiting the lifestyles of the owners and serving the many markets which are attracted to hosted accommodation. These range from in-house, fully catered bed and breakfasts to self contained accommodation where guests cater for themselves. When deciding the type of business you want to develop you should also think about whether you want to accommodate people all year round or in spring and summer only, seven days a week or just at weekends. Do you intend to be available to serve breakfast to your guests or will your accommodation be self contained where guests can either prepare breakfast from provisions supplied by you or self cater for their stay? If you are thinking of developing a farmstay will you, or a family or staff member be available whenever guests want to participate in any farm activities they have paid for in their tariff? Regardless of the type of accommodation you offer you should be on hand to warmly welcome your guests, address any special requirements they may have and assure them of
your attention during their stay with you. Check the Definitions for Types of Businesses
within the scope of HAA.
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