In the seven months we've been on the road, we've stayed at 23 different Airbnb apartments. We also hosted Airbnb guests in our spare room in the months leading up to our trip, so we have a lot of experience being both hosts and guests.
Across the board, we find that Airbnb hosts forget the same few things that would be super helpful to us as guests:
1. Cutting Board
We've stayed in so many apartments with beautiful, full kitchens complete with four-burner stoves, ovens and pots/pans. But inevitably we go to cook a simple meal (something we often do to keep our travel expenses low) only to find that there are no cutting boards in the place! I can't count how many times I've flipped plates over to cut vegetables on the back or used the top of a tupperware container to do the job.
2. Extra Set of Keys
Maybe some couples want to spend every moment together on vacation, but Nate and I certainly don't. Having that extra set of keys gives us the freedom to go our separate ways and return to the apartment or room without having to coordinate a complicated meet up plan where we pick a time and location to meet but have to find a backup cafe with wifi to e-mail the other person because we're running late or want to stay out longer. You get it.
3. Salt and Pepper
Totally not a requirement, and I get that most Airbnb listings with kitchens won't promise you full cooking utensils, but salt and pepper is super cheap and probably something you can buy once as a host and just keep in the cupboard. We've bought it over and over for places that don't have any, often leaving behind nearly full bags because we just cooked a handful of times.
As a guest in someone else's apartment, I want to clean up after myself. I also just like having a clean kitchen, so I'm likely to want to wash dishes by hand pretty frequently. I think some airbnb hosts feel like the cleaning supplies have to be locked away because that's not something guests want to see, but I personally like having a sponge and some dish soap handy to make both of our lives easier.
5. Top Sheet
I encounter a top sheet in airbnb apartments so infrequently that I'm starting to wonder if maybe it's just an American thing that we always have them. I'm not a germaphobe, but as someone renting someone else's bed, of course I think about who else recently slept there. I know comforters and quilts don't get washed nearly as frequently as sheets, so I like knowing that I can sandwich myself in between a top and bottom sheet and feel relatively sure that I'm not sleeping in someone else's germs.
6. Trash cans
I'm constantly rigging up a used plastic shopping bag in the bathroom because airbnb hosts so commonly don't provide trash cans there. Having a little bin in the bathroom and bedroom (hosts always remember the kitchen) make a big difference. If you're concerned about the extra work taking out the trash, provide guests with simple instructions on taking the trash out. I know I usually do for a stay lasting longer than a couple of nights, and most guests won't mind if it means the apartment is better equipped.
Also totally not a requirement, but leaving a city map behind is so helpful for guests. I even had an airbnb host in Barcelona provide us with a full notebook with laminated pages outlining her favorite restaurants, cafes and bars in the neighborhood, options for hikes around the city and plenty of maps. You don't have to go to this extreme, but having a few basic recommendations and a good city map in the apartment is always a bonus!