Get your B&B ready for the public holidays with the right merchant services

merchant servicesIn just under a month’s time the nation gets to enjoy another long weekend. From Thursday 24th until Monday 28th March, popular holiday destinations and guesthouses will fill up for the last rush until summer next year. You’ve made it through the season, and this last long public holiday weekend is the final push. As exhausted as you might feel from running a busy guesthouse non-stop for the best part of six months, now is not the time to take your foot off the accelerator. In this blog we’ll discuss how to best prep your B&B for the long weekend, and how merchant services can help in its smooth running.

As seasoned a hospitality veteran as you might be, tiredness and stress can make even the most meticulous host forget a few small but significant details. Here’s how to stay one step ahead:

Make sure you have enough staff:

Even one less staff member will put undue pressure on all other employees, not to mention yourself, and it’ll impact the quality of service you give your guests. Start planning work rosters for the last weekend of March now, so that you’ve got all shifts covered, and are able to give your staff a bit of time off too.


Address any technical problems or repairs well in advance:

The wear and tear of the summer season will mean your guesthouse has probably picked up a bit of damage along the way. Start conducting a thorough check of everything that needs to be fixed and then see to it well before the mass influx of guests.


Fully stock your bar or restaurant:

Just because the end of the season is nigh, doesn’t mean you should neglect your food and drinks inventory. You might be in wind down mode, but your guests will still very much be in holiday spirits over the long weekend, and will want and expect the full menu available to them. Soft drinks and alcohol can keep until next summer so don’t worry if you’ve got stock leftover after your guests have departed.


Install payment systems to avoid inconvenience for customers:

It might seem like a very small part of a guest’s weekend away, but not being able to pay quickly and conveniently can be the black mark on an otherwise perfect weekend. If you don’t already make use of merchant services in your B&B, now is the perfect opportunity to invest in them. Merchant services allow you to transact more easily, manage cash flow better (you won’t have to wait for EFTs to clear) and offer better customer service.


Even if your guesthouse suffers from bad reception, a dual SIM card machine can avert the problem

Choosing the right merchant services for your guesthouse is the next step. By selecting a merchant services provider who offers a wide range of payment solutions, you have the flexibility to offer a greater range of payment options to your guests. What’s more, if your business grows or changes, you can change your merchant services accordingly. You can choose from a traditional card machine, a portable card machine or a mobile card reader. The first two options can come with a dual SIM, so that if reception is patchy in your area, the card machine can switch networks.


In case of emergency, have a mobile card reader on hand

The mobile card reader is operated using a mobile app on your smartphone or tablet. This device connects to the reader – into which your customer inserts their card – by Bluetooth. To transact, your device needs to be fully charged and have a working internet connection. The beauty of this type of merchant service – which we expand upon in our blog Eight things you never knew ZipZap could do – is that you can transact without power, so it’s a perfect backup to your other card machine in the event of load shedding. What’s more, you’ll be able to take payment anywhere within the grounds of your guesthouse.


For more information on priming your business for success, download our ZipZap Brochure.