So You Want to Start a Crashpad?
Six years ago I started my own crashpad business. When I first learned what crashpads were in the first place I wanted to research and learn all about the crashpad industry, but I was sorely disappointed to find how little information actually existed. There is a great lack of resources for managing airline crew crashpads -and there are too many unprofessional pads out there- so I’m happy to bring you this guide! This should point you in the right direction and provide the steps necessary to help you put your best foot forward! Here are my top 5 tips for starting your crashpad, and for making it a successful one.
1. Read The Guide, “How to Start & Manage a Crashpad”.
I highly recommend that you read the guide book to starting and managing a Crashpad, which can be found here! The book details key factors and shares experiences that tie together what works and why. While there is such little info or resources out there that detail the steps to starting a crashpad, there are a lot of lessons to learn from this book and it offers a better idea of what it’s like to manage an airline crew property.
2. Location, location, location.
There is a lot about the crashpad or crewhouse that should be considered, but overall the location, distance from the airport and the accessibility to transportation is the most essential element. Location is key.
Here are some questions you will be asked repeatedly:
- Is there public transport accessible?
- What is the distance from the airport?
- How much does an Uber or Lyft cost?
- If I have a car, is there free parking available?
- What is the closest employee parking lot to your crashpad?
See our Commuter’s Guide to DFW, including parking lot pins not listed on GoogleMaps and a money-saving airport hack, here at the following post.
Also, we personally recommend that you don’t give out or share your property address without first verifying your clients as airline crew. Safety and security are everything! This involves creating your application process (Keep reading)!
3. Create Your Process!
Before you begin, you need to detail all the steps of your complete process, from applications and inquiries to refunding deposits upon vacating. You will need a place to store and organize all of this client, lease and payment information.
Trello is a wonderful way to set up a process that works specifically for your needs. There are moving lists, the simplicity of cards, beautiful board backgrounds, works in harmony with forms and email, etc… This program has changed my life! Check it out by clicking here.
Obtain a Google Voice number, so your work and personal calls and chats can be kept separate. This will also help you with maintaining business hours.
Regarding payment methods, Venmo is great, private, secure, instant and free. It’s also very quick to set up. Most crew have and are happy to use this.
Before anything, I recommend you open up a separate bank account, and set aside an amount for taxes each month. This makes tax season a lot less stressful and allows you to get a more clear view of your finances.
All of these things I mentioned above should work in harmony with your website if you have one, and should be a mobile-friendly, user-friendly experience. Your website or listing is in many cases your first impression to potential clients.
4. Expectations Are Everything!
We have found in our almost 6 years of crashpad and airline crewhouse management that the more clear and defined your expectations are, the better the experience and outcome will be.
We also pride ourselves of our 24 Hour Happiness Guarantee! We don’t seek to keep crashpad deposits, and we really would prefer to return the deposit and see someone go who is not happy to stay at one of our properties. This also maintains a positive outcome for everyone, clients are usually appreciative and your reputation won’t be at risk. See our full happiness guarantee policy here.
- Create a website or listing that answers the big questions (Rate per month? Hot or cold beds? Female, male or co-ed? Bunk beds or private rooms?..) and that presents a gallery of photos of your crashpad or airline crew property. If you need some help getting started and would like to learn some great tips for making technology work for you, check out AZ Technology Solution’s FREE training videos here at https://aztechsol.com !
- Instead of spending money on a website, you could instead simply create a FREE property listing here so you can send your potential renters there to see pictures and contact you directly.
- Research and join Facebook groups for Crashpad Properties in your area.
- If you’re still needing some help to fill your crashpad vacancies, you might consider paying for a listing at Crashpad Corner.
Are You Ready for Take-Off?
Are you ready to get serious? I hope that this guide offers you a place to start. I also believe that as crashpad managers we can partner up together to provide a better and more professional experience for commuting airline crew than what budget hotels could ever offer. We can also help each other by elevating the standard of crashpad living and to implement and carry out processes that help to protect us all.
I wish you all the best in your new adventure!