How to make your site social distancing safe


It is likely that although travel restrictions will ease we will be required to socially distance for quite some time. It’s important that you take the time to adapt your site to suit these requirements over the next few weeks. 


Update your checkin policy to enable guests to selfcheckin 

We strongly advise that you offer self-check-in and are aiming for this to be the default option for all spaces. If it is not possible this will be flagged on your page and instead a social distance checkin will be provided. To do this, consider creating more detailed maps and instructions. You may even want to create little films on your phone explaining anything complicated, so guests can refer to it before and during their stay. Please send all this info to guests in advance in case they don’t have mobile signal and let them know if there is no mobile signal or Wi-Fi at your place, so they can be prepared.  

If you can’t offer self-check in without an audio or written explanation, please call the guest by phone when they arrive to talk through in person. If this is also not possible, please ensure you keep to 2m away and respect social distancing. 

If you are not able to do this, please discuss how you plan to safely manage this by emailing


Welcome packs and in space objects

Give some thought to the content of welcome packs, think about updating to comfort the guest about the social distancing and cleaning measures you have put in place. You could also include information on anything that you would like them to do to ensure their and your safety and that of other guests too.

Your welcome pack, things to do literature and visitor comment book all fall into the high-touch category. Therefore, we recommend you don’t use these at this time and instead email as a PDF prior to the guests stay. Please make sure the guests have your telephone number so they can call you to talk anything through. Perhaps create mini videos of how to use the oven or wood-burner or anything more complex and unique about your site. If guests don’t have this info with them, print out and give only as a backup.  

Please also make sure that you provide guests with details of the nearest hospital in the event of an emergency.

Books and board games are also things that are not strictly necessary at this time and fall into the high touch category. If removing, you may simply want to let guests know in advance so they can bring their own.


Visiting guests during their stay 

If you normally deliver breakfast as part of your offer, then consider leaving this outside at a safe place so more self-serve. Or provide a breakfast hamper (again not delivered in person) as an alternative that they then cook for themselves.  If you normally offer a range of options for delivered meals during stay, you may want to consider reducing this during this period. Just make guests aware of this prior to stay, so they’re clear on what’s possible.

If something needs fixing or explaining during guests’ stay, talk things through as remotely as possible, so that you don’t have to enter the space while they are in it too. If you do have to enter then wash hands before and after coming into contact with anything.

Communal areas    

If your site has multiple spaces and shared facilities, consider how you can make your these suitable for social distancing. If it possible to provide private cooking and washing facilities for each space, this would be the preferred option. At this stage it is unclear what restrictions will be in place regarding tourism, but communal spaces and shared facilities, may not be possible, certainly not at first or as restrictions ease. So please plan for this eventuality and how you can make your site work in a way which allows guests to socially distance and not share facilities. If this is not possible please email to discuss how you plan to manage this. 

If private facilities cannot be arranged, allocate a set time for each guest, or group of guests, to use the shared facility, or leave a rota where they can allocate their own time slots, with cleaning in between.  If cleaning by yourselves isn’t possible, clear signs must be left for guests with instructions on cleaning the shared facility when they leave. Ample cleaning products should also be provided and this process should also be explained as part of the check-in. You may want to consider buying multiple sets of crockery and cutlery for each set of guests to use. 

If you have a shop, we would recommend you have a sign saying one guest at a time and for guests to please respect social distancing. Also have hand sanitiser at the door or close to it.
Really think about how essential any other shared facilities are to your guests enjoyment and how safe they are during this time. It might create real challenges for parents in managing their children if we have policies that children will struggle to understand. If a particular facility is simply an unnecessary risk and no one would really miss it if not available, it might be better and easier for all to temporarily close it.


Hot tubs 

During this time we anticipate that it won’t be possible for different guests to share the same hot-tub. If you have private hot-tubs, assuming these can be cleaned safely between uses, then it is possible to continue to offer them to guests. Or if you have a hot-tub that is normally shared, consider allocating it to one space only or making it available on request only (and potentially at an additional fee) so that you can safely clean it between uses 

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