Homestay Handbook

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A handbook to home accommodation.

Text of Homestay Handbook

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2. Values & principles Pricing Contents of Homestay Homestay)accommodation Host family Guests Costs Additional services General contents Breakfast Cyclist)friendly Homestay)homes Motorcyclist)friendly Homestay)homes Contents This handbook has been compiled for a Homestay project funded by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Finland. Background 3. What is Homestay accommodation? Benefits of Homestay Could I host Homestay guests? Homestay is accommodation provided occasionally by private people. Homestay accommodation is located in the hosts own home or in the immediate surroundings of it, and it has no significant economic purpose, although it is provided for a fee. For the guest, homestay, with the presence of the host family, is a unique opportunity to get acquainted with the local everyday life and way of life. Homestay activities enhance the attractiveness of an area and provide accommodation services even areas not yet covered by other accommodation services, or for areas the services of which are not suit for all travellers. As a consequence, increased attractiveness of an area adds to the demand for local products and existing services. Above all, the goal of Homestay is to have satisfied guests who may provide their hosts with new friendships and opportunities for internationalisation in their own homes. It is worth a try! According to the experiences of Homestay hosts, experiences of both hosts and quests have been good. In addition, Homestay is a very easy process. The most important thing is that each host or hostess is who s/he really is, because that is what the guests want. This handbook includes the basic principles and recommendations of Homestay. After reading them, you can consider whether you would be willing to try homestay yourself too. Background 4. Homestay-accommodation Values & principles The host family is either present or available throughout the entire stay. Homes are welcoming, hospitable and home-like, and the privacy of guests has been taken into account. Homes prefer the use of local products and raw materials as well as organic products in their serving of food. Homes are also able to recommend their guests other local tourist services and resorts. Local cultures and traditions are emphasised as the homes market and provide different services. Homes take the guestspre-announced special dietary requirements and allergies into account. Homes are non-smoking (no smoking indoors). Homes respect the principles of sustainable develop- ment. 5. Values & principles Host family The host family is either present or available throughout the entire stay. The host family respects the guest. The accommodation provided by the host family coincides with the recommendations of the Homestay concept as regards the quality of basic services provided. The host family defines the rules for using common areas and outdoor areas and any possible additional services. The host family verifies the identity of the guest as s/he arrives. If needed, the host family provides assistance for any passing tourists, although they would not be accommodated by the host. The host family has the right to determine the price of accommodation offered. The host family is responsible for paying taxes for the income received through Homestay. GuestGuestGuestHostHost 6. The host family is not allowed to cancel a confirmed reservation unless due to unavoidable reasons, such as illness in the host family or illness of a close relative, fire, burglary, or other substantial material damage. In case of such an obstacle, the host family informs the guest immedi- ately and if possible, helps him/her in finding similar accommodation elsewhere. The host ensures that the guest has had an access to the common terms of contract for accommodation services and has had the chance to approve them prior to booking accommodation. http://www.maaseutupolitiikka.fi/matkailu/sopimusehdot In case of an accident taking place during the stay, the guest is commit- ted to take responsibility for his/her own actions. The home insurance of the host family may, depending on the extent of the insurance, replace part of the damage. The excess or the share of costs not cov- ered by the insurance can be claimed from the guest. The host family is responsible for following the legislation on home accommodation services in their supply of services. Values & principles Host family 7. Guests The guest respects the host family and their home. The guest is entitled to receive accommodation services provided by the host family coinciding with the recommendations of the Homestay concept as regards the quality of basic services and any other additional services, if s/he has agreed on these services with the host family. The guest pays for his/her stay either in advance or as s/he arrives, according to the agreement with the host family. The guest has the right to cancel his/her reservation. After the can- cellation, the host family is entitled to a share of the possible ad- vance payment according to the terms of contract signed, as de- fined by the Agreement Terms Regarding Countryside Holidays. http://www.maaseutupolitiikka.fi/matkailu/sopimusehdot In case of an accident taking place during the stay, the guest is committed to take responsibility for his/her own actions. The home insurance of the host family may, depending on the extent of the insurance, replace part of the damage. The excess or the share of costs not covered by the insurance can be claimed from the guest. Values & principles 8. General contents Possibility for one night stays as well. Accommodation in a private room (equipped with a door) in the residential building of the host family or in a separate building located next to or near the main building. The room designated for staying overnight is a houseroom suitable for accommodating guests. The number of beds in the room corresponds with the number of residents defined for the room. The beds or sofa-beds in the room are decent, undamaged and in good condition, and suitable for sleeping. The guest is provided with an opportunity to wash him/herself. Each guest is entitled to clean, decent bed linen: blanket pillow sheet duvet cover pillowcase bath towel Contents of Homestay 9. Breakfast Contents of Homestay Breakfast is included in the price of the stay, unless otherwise agreed with the guest. Includes a breakfast typically served at the residence. Is not a buffet-type breakfast, but a home-like breakfast served on a dining table. Served at the same time the host family usually eats their breakfast, unless otherwise agreed with the guest. For additional charge, the guest can get a lunch box to go. 10. Contents of Homestay Cyclist-friendly Homestay-homes Cyclist-friendly Homestay-homes offer basic accommodation and the following additional services: Nourishing breakfast. Basic tools for bicycle service. Possibility to wash the bicycle. (water hose and brush) Possibility for doing the laundry and drying the clothes. Chance to check next day's weather. Lock-up storage for the bicycle. 11. Motorcyclist-friendly Homestay-homes offer basic accommodation and the following additional services: Paved road all the way. (no multi-kilometer gravel roads) Lock-up storage for the motorbike. Available route plans for nearby areas. Information on local tourist attractions and restaurants. Chance to check next day's weather. In addition, the host family is also familiar with motorcycling and has the interest in it. Ravintola INFO Contents of Homestay Motorcyclist-friendly Homestay-homes 12. Pricing Costs Homestay accommodation is not intended to be free of charge or a low-cost option. As determining the price for accommodation, the host needs to consider all expenses caused by homestay, such as: Electricity: heating, lighting, cooking, laundry. Water: washing, laundry, cooking. Cleaning: equipment, detergents. Meals: raw materials for breakfast and any other meals. Linen. Use of ones own free time for homestay activities. 13. Pricing Costs Time spent on marketing: administering the website, taking and renewing photos, answering e-mails and booking inquiries. Time spent on administration: recording both the income and expenses, filing the receipts, filling in tax returns. In addition, possible absence from ones permanent work resulting in loss of income should be taken into account as defining the price for accommodation. Income received through Homestay is taxable, which needs to be considered when defining the price. Any special features of your own home, such as the historical value or location of the building or the place, should also be taken into consideration as setting the price. 14. Additional services Pricing The host determines the price for any additional services. Examples of possible additional services included in the price or charged separately are listed as follows: Using the sauna. Wireless internet connection. Possibility to have a warm meal. Possibility to buy a lunch box to go. Possibility to put up a tent and camp outside. Use of gas/charcoal grill in the yard. Possibility to accommodate in a camping trailer in the yard. 15. Welcome home!