Oct 6, 2011

In addition to the basic supplies, and perhaps some of the supplies for the less common situations, that I've posted about before, you'll want to provide some other things for your guests to enjoy during their vacation.
  • Board games
  • Kids toys
  • Jigsaw puzzles
  • DVDs and CDs
  • Paperbacks and coffee table books
  • Outdoor toys
  • (for beach properties) folding chairs and beach umbrellas
  • (for ski properties) sleds
When it comes to buying board games, try and pickup those 5-in-1 or 7-in-1 boxes. They are generally inexpensive at drug stores or large box stores. You're going to need to replace these as pieces are lost, so you won't want to spend too much. You can also pickup some of the classic board games and jigsaw puzzles at charity shops.

Some vacation rental owners have begun to experiment offering streaming options for movies and music. For example, there are people that provide a Roku. We're big fans of our Roku and Apple TV, and plan to experiment with providing these to rental guests in future. But for now, we provide DVDs and CDs. If you're going to do this, you need to recognize that some will go missing. We label the boxes to reduce the chance of things accidentally getting packed up.

A lot of people like to read on vacation. We have a very small collection of paperbacks. If guests take them it's not a big deal. Generally we find a few new books each year as guests leave behind books they brought with them and finished. Coffee book tables, especially for the local area, are nice things to provide. When else do people have time to read those kinds of things except when on vacation? Local second hand book stores and charity shops will often have good ones.

A lot of things are going to depend on the type of vacation home you have. If you're at the beach, then you should consider folding beach chairs and umbrellas. A lot of people will bring their own. But providing a few inexpensive ones can be really appreciated, and not cost much, even though you will have to replace them fairly frequently. A few plastic buckets and shovels and beach toys are appreciated too. These will go missing quickly, so we usually just pick some things up at local charity stores off-season.

Also, don't forget to let your locale give you ideas for special, unique amenities to leave at your VR for your guests.  Perhaps you're near a good fishing spot, then a couple of inexpensive bamboo fishing poles might be nice to tuck into your outdoor storage.  Near a beach?  Some owners print up their own inexpensive totes (figuring, if the guests take them, then it's free advertising for the Vacation Rental). Our Beech Mountain Bliss vacation home is close to a free sledding slope. So we provide a couple of those inexpensive saucer sleds that have so far proven indestructible. Whatever you provide - indoor or out - it's a good idea to label it or mark it with permanent marker. Generally things go walking from a vacation home because in the last minute packing up, guests pop things into boxes or their car thinking they belong to someone else in the group.

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