Airbnb Self-Check-In: What It Is and How to Use It

Airbnb Self-Check-In: What It Is and How to Use It

Providing your visitors with an Airbnb self-check-in option is a wonderful way to optimize their stay. In reality, in recent years, the option of self-checking has grown in popularity. It’s no surprise that an automated and efficient check-in procedure saves you time and offers a consistent experience for your visitors from the beginning.

More hosts are adopting this strategy for various reasons, including convenience and necessity. The worldwide COVID-19 epidemic, which began in 2020, disrupted the way hosts functioned. Self-check-in on Airbnb has become essential for avoiding interaction between hosts and visitors.

Learn how to set up an Airbnb self-check-in procedure for your short-term rental and make it as simple as possible for both you and your visitors.

What is the self-check-in option on Airbnb?

In a nutshell, Airbnb self-check-in is a simple solution that allows visitors to enter your home using a key lockbox, smart lock, or keypad. It is no longer necessary for you to be there in person. Your visitors will simply need a code to get access to your property, after which they will be able to allow themselves in.

What are the most popular vacation rental self-check-in options?

Installing a lockbox or a smart lock to your door handle or wall is the first step in setting up the self-check-in procedure. You may also use key exchange services to guarantee a stress-free key transfer procedure. For your convenience, we’ll take a closer look at a few of the most popular choices.

1. Lockbox on Airbnb

A lockbox is a compact storage device developed to safely and securely hold the keys to your rental property. It is very secure, and visitors will just need a code to access it. There are several distinct lockbox systems available, each with its lock design. Push-button lockboxes, dial lockboxes, wheel lockboxes, and electronic or smart lockboxes are examples of these.

If you’re looking for a lockbox in the higher price bracket, the Igloohome Smart Keybox 3 is a good option. The Kingsley Guard-a-Key Black Realtor’s Lockbox and the Master Lock 5424D Portable Lock Box are other fantastic solutions if you’re on a budget.

2. Smart lock for Airbnb

A smart lock employs a security code generated, activated, and deleted remotely using a mobile device (usually a smartphone). The visitor will be able to enter your property using this code. August Smart Lock Pro and Yale Assure Lock SL are two of the top smart locks to look at.

One of the handiest and safe door locks is a smart lock. Your smartphone controls them, and you can change the lock code remotely after each guest leaves to maintain complete privacy for your future visitors.

3. Services for exchanging keys

Another option is to use key exchange services like KeyNest or Keycafe to automate your self-check-in procedure. In addition, Airbnb hosts may monitor the gathering and usage of keys in real-time. Both firms have hundreds of sites throughout North America where hosts may drop off keys for visitors to pick up at their leisure. KeyNest provides thousands of 24/7 lockers for European Airbnb hosts, generally every few blocks in major areas.

Every door is another key exchange service that hosts may use. Every door is a keyless self-check-in service that you can plan and manage from a distance. A visitor will be able to get admission to your property by calling or entering a unique PIN. This allows them to get access to your property, where the keys are kept, and use them as usual from there.

How do you tell your Airbnb visitors about your self-check-in instructions?

Self-check-in instructions can be added to your Airbnb listing.

Before they come, make sure your visitors know the self-check-in procedure. The good news is that you can switch on self-check-in for your property on Airbnb. Three days before their arrival, your visitors will get an automatic message containing check-in information if you choose this option. To include self-check-in to your listing, all you have to do is follow these simple steps:

  • Select your listing from the Airbnb.com website’s Your listings section.
  • From the drop-down option next to Guest resources, choose Edit.
  • Under Directions, click on Add self-check-in.
  • Choose how people will be able to find your listing.
  • To add the instructions, follow the steps below.


Making a message on Airbnb with comprehensive check-in instructions

Sending your visitors a customized letter with check-in instructions is a smart idea. This message is beneficial since it may simply establish touch with visitors to convey that you are prepared for their arrival.

This sort of letter is also a wonderful approach to urge visitors to notify you of any potential problems before they arrive. This gives you the option to address any issues you may be ignorant of, as well as specific requests, to enhance your chances of obtaining a five-star rating. In your message containing the self-check-in instructions, be sure to include the following information:

  • The location of your home.
  • A snapshot of your property from the street, as well as a photo of your entranceway.
  • If you’re going to put an actual key in a lockbox, be sure to provide instructions on locating it and how to unlock it.
  • Codes for unlocking doors (and gates if necessary).
  • Creating a template for automatic self-check-in messages
  • Create a message template to prevent having to communicate the same instructions repeatedly. You may email it to every person that makes a reservation with you.

Here’s a simple illustration:

Hello, [insert guest’s name].

I’m looking forward to your arrival at [property name] tomorrow, and I’m sure you are as well! Please keep in mind that check-in takes place at [check-in time]. After that, the property will be ready at any moment. You’ll need the following information to check-in:

[property name] is the name of the property.

[property address in its entirety]

[lockbox passcode] is the password for the lockbox.

The lockbox may be found at [x] at [place]. Simply input the passcode, and the top will open, allowing you to retrieve your home keys.

Password for Wi-Fi: [Wi-Fi password]

If you haven’t already, please go over my home rules. Please review my welcome book if you have any questions about your reservation. It contains everything you need you know about your upcoming trip, as well as recommendations for the best places to visit and things to do.

Please let us know through the Airbnb app if there is anything we can do to make your stay more pleasurable once you have unpacked and settled in. We’re just a text away.


[Your name here]

Lockbox vs. Key Exchange Services vs. Airbnb Smart Lock

Regardless of the path you choose, it is important to remember that you must change the codes between stays. Not only would this increase your safety, but it may also be mandated by your insurance company.


Lockboxes are long-lasting and simple to use. While the lockboxes are tough, if visitors aren’t accustomed to dealing with them, they may inadvertently destroy them. If they type in the erroneous code too often, the lockbox may get jammed.

The lockbox will also be opened and exposed if the visitor does not shut it correctly. A padlock-style lockbox attached to a railing by a metal loop is similarly insecure since it is quite simple to tear them off.

On the plus side, they are far less expensive than smart locks. A more costly lockbox will set you back between $120 and $170.

Smart locks

Smart Locks are simple to operate and very secure. It allows you to track who has entered and exited your premises. You may even verify whether a door is locked using your phone with many smart locks. Furthermore, unlike regular locks, they provide anti-lockpicking protection. However, there is a chance that someone may attempt to hack it.

Smart locks, on the other hand, are costly. A good smart lock will cost you more than $200. It also necessitates the use of batteries and a connection to a phone and a Wi-Fi network.

Service for exchanging keys

It’s simple to use, inexpensive, and safe, but hosts and visitors should remember that the site may not be available 24 hours a day. Furthermore, many hosts lament the lack of close sites in their neighborhood.

How may the Airbnb self-check-in procedure be improved?

1. Include images depicting your self-check-in procedure.

Adding images (or maybe a video) of the various parts of the process is much more effective. Almost all hosts nowadays have access to a device capable of capturing high-quality images and/or recordings. Each picture or video should be not only clear but also self-explanatory. Nothing prevents you from adding text to the graphics if you think it’ll be difficult. To minimize any misinterpretation, doing this additional step is a smart idea.

2. Hand out a welcoming present

If you don’t feel that self-check-in allows you to show off your hosting talents, add a personal touch with a welcome gift and a handwritten card.

3. Make a guest guidebook for your home.

If you’re giving a tour of your property in person, odds are your visitors will remember very little of it. After a lengthy journey, there is an excess of information. Instead, a house handbook (available in either paper copy or digital format) enables your visitors to peruse it at their leisure. It’s also a good resource for when they need to look stuff up again.

4. Post-check-in follow-up

A smart habit is sending a quick follow-up note in the evening for one-night stays. While this message isn’t strictly mandatory, it should be sent if you haven’t heard from your visitors after they’ve checked in. You may send this follow-up message the following morning if your visitor stays for many nights.

Here’s a simple illustration:

Hello, [insert guest’s name].

I’m sending you a brief note to ensure that you checked in and settled down without incident. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you need any assistance.

Have a great time!


[Your name here]


Airbnb self-check-in is becoming more popular among both guests and hosts. It is easy to use, handy, and time-saving. If you’re worried, it’ll seem too impersonal, keep in mind that you may send a customized greeting or even leave a handmade welcome letter and gift to make your visitors feel right at home. You may be guaranteed that your visitors will not fault you for the check-in procedure if your directions are straightforward and self-explanatory.

Leave a Comment

Grow Your Vacation Rental Business!

No matter the size of your vacation rental business, you can benefit from Lodgable's state-of-art software. Click below to get started!

Related Articles

Let’s Get Started

Lodgable now offers the fastest response times in the industry during business hours. Learn more about how our state-of-the-art software will help grow your business today!

Grow Your Vacation Rental Business! 

Chat With Us

Chat Now




The Product