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Welcome tray guide for holiday lets

How to holiday let

Hampered by long drives and traffic, the idea of arriving at a beautiful cottage is the light at the end of the tunnel. Tired and ready to settle into a dream holiday, throwing open the doors to a tidy, clean cottage is the icing on the cake. What better way to start a holiday, you might ask? Well, a lovely welcome tray adds the perfect final touch.

Flash Fact: Around 10% of all guests who leave a review with us, talk about their wonderful welcome tray (it also increased the average questionnaire score too!)

Whether you’d like to prepare a luxury welcome tray, or simply leave a personalised greetings card with a bottle of vino, that extra effort makes a wonderful first impression. There are plenty of ways to surprise your guests with an unexpected treat, from a goody-tray made up of local delicacies, homemade cream tea with yummy jam and cream, to some fruit of the fresh or bottled variety.

Even a small bunch of seasonal flowers can add a homely, personal touch that will stand you out from other holidays, and your guests will really appreciate the extra thought.

welcome hamper with delicious ingredients and local produce

The essentials

If you don’t have time to prepare food, fear not. Just leaving some basics can make a huge difference to your guests' arrival. For example:

- Milk

- A little jar of tea and coffee 

- A nice packet of biscuits

A great portfolio of pictures and information is really important, but having guests that can walk into the reality and say “wow” will take your cottage to the next level. Not only will you provide your guests with the holiday of a lifetime, you also encourage them to come back for more and create the perfect ambassadors for other potential visitors.



baking homemade cakes for a cottage welcome tray

We all know that nothing beats a homemade cake, so if you have the time, preparing something yourself to greet your guests upon their arrival will really ensure they have a unforgettable stay. A few simple recipes include:

- Shortbread

- Scones

- Victoria sponge

You may have a trusty scone recipe tucked away in the family cook book already but there are also lots of delicious and easy recipes to be found online for those who are not experienced home bakers. 

Homemade jam and marmalade are also brilliant options due to their long shelf life, meaning you can make a large batch to being with and then just pop a fresh jar out for new guests to enjoy on the morning toast.

Important note on homemade products: If you are making goodies for your welcome tray, it is important that you list the ingredients for the guest. Natasha's Law, officially known as the UK Food Information Amendment, requires businesses to clearly show what ingredients were used, to help those with allergies avoid things they shouldn't eat. 


 Special Treats

fresh honey displayed with fruit and cereal on a holiday cottage welcome tray

If you’re looking to make you welcome tray extra special, then including a selection of local delicacies is always a nice touch. Your guests may not know the area that well, so by enabling them to sample some of its best kept secrets, you’re guaranteed to put a smile on their face.

Perhaps there is a farm renowned for its honey or a nearby distillery that produces award winning gin. You could even include some local flowers that only grow nearby to excite your guests at the chance to explore everything else your area has to offer.

For example:

- Local honey

- Signature treat 

- Locally made drink or wine

And one of our favourite treats...

- Handmade chocolate from Josh's Chocolate

Joshs Chocolate

One treat that we know your guests will love is Josh's Chocolate. All of their delicious chocolate products are handmade in Cornwall, celebrating great tasting chocolate and the simple life pleasures of coast and country lifestyle. From sea salt and caramel to blueberry and hazelnut, all flavours are incredibly tasty and will be a real hit in welcome hampers and trays! 

Josh has kindly offered all Classic owners wholesale prices. Please click here to register.  


Ready made welcome hampers

If you want to include some luxury items on your welcome tray but don’t have time to go to the shops, you will be able to find some fabulous companies who will take care of the whole box for you and tailor it specifically for holiday lets.



Don't forget the dog!

That said, it’s not just two-legged visitors who appreciate a nice touch. Over the years, our canine companions have established themselves as core family members and when they’re happy, we’re happy. If you have a dog-friendly property, why not leave out a little basket with some goodies? An old blanket, towel and a couple of chewies work to keep both your cottage cleaner and all of your guests entertained.

However far you want to go, the personal touches really make a big difference. Whether your guests are old friends or first-timers, offering a welcome surprise will add a whole new dimension to their holiday and leave them wanting more.

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