The golden rule of buying things for your Airbnb is to buy something “easy to use, hard to break.” But there are times when it’s OK to break this rule.
We bought another home and listed it on Airbnb just two months ago, and we ended up buying real glass, stemless wine glasses. Even though we know from experience that some of them will likely break in the coming years, we feel that the wine drinking experience is much improved with real glass.
So today I’ll just talk through some of the experiences we’ve had and things we consider when buying wine glasses for our Airbnbs. Then I’ll share 3 different brands that we actually put in one or more of our listings.
All The Ways Wine Glasses Can Break
Anyone who has had a drink out of a wine glass before knows that they can often feel fragile. Because they (usually) are made out of glass, one mistake can result in shattering.
But keep in mind that a wine glass with a stem is even more breakable.
The reality is that you can’t exactly run an Airbnb without putting a few breakable things in them. Our picture frames have glass coverings, we use real coffee mugs, have breakable dishes/dinnerware, and some of our interior art pieces are made of clay or porcelain.
Here are a few ways that guests have broken our things:
- Parties – before Covid restrictions gave us more leverage to ban parties in our listings, we had several things broken (one of the more surprising was a granite cutting board)
- Kids – We do our best to make our listings kid friendly, but sometimes they just find things, run into things or are just completely unaware of their bodies.
- Accidents – Sometimes people just mess up and accidentally break something. It happens.
Fortunately we’ve never had anyone break anything on purpose (to our knowledge), but the risk is there for wine glasses to break. So it’s best to do your best to avoid this.
The three types of wine glasses we stock
Now when buying items for your Airbnb, there are some things that you should take great care in purchasing because they can have a meaningful impact on your bottom line (like mattresses for example). Wine glasses are not one of these items.
So with that in mind…depending on how luxury our listing is we stock one of three kinds of wine glasses:
- Free – We’ve collected a handful of wine glasses from when we do the occasional wine tasting. Might as well put them to good use in an Airbnb. And if they break, no big deal.
- Stemless – For our more luxury/expensive listings we go ahead and put actual glass, stemless wine glasses in. We want them to be nicer, but going stemless makes them a bit heartier and harder to break.
- Plastic – For our more affordable listings we just buy plastic wine glasses. It would take a freak accident to break one of these and they still mostly feel like a wine glass.
We just don’t bother with real glass, stemmed wine glasses. We’ve had too many accidents and had to replace them too many times, so we just don’t bother any more.
Wine glasses we currently have in our Airbnbs
I try to only recommend products that have actually been used in at least one of our listings for more than 2 years. Fortunately, I am able to do that.
MICHLEY Unbreakable Stemmed Wine Glass
- Used in our Airbnbs for more than 3 years
- Made of 100% Tritan plastic
- Dishwasher safe
- Elegant look
- Not going to break
We actually keep these in our low and middle priced listings. They have a faint seam that runs up the side of the glass, but in my opinion it doesn’t detract from the look of the glass. They are of course lighter than real glass, but that’s the main different you notice.
I prefer the look of stemmed glasses. So I think these look really good, but they just don’t feel quite as good since they’re much lighter.
They haven’t stained at all in the years we’ve kept them in our listings, and of course haven’t broken either. In terms of durability, this is about as good as you can hope for in a wine glass.
Overall, we’ve been very happy with these. Being plastic, they don’t have the same luxurious feel/weight of real glass, but they get the job done, don’t stain and you shouldn’t have to replace them for a long time.
JoyJolt Stemless Wine Glasses
- Used in our Airbnb for more than 2 years
- Made of glass
- Shatter resistant
- Dishwasher safe
- Affordable set of 4
These JoyJolt stemless wine glasses are what we have in our nicest listing. They are made of glass and have the weight and feel of wine glass. They’re a bit wider than some other stemless glasses, which I think looks a bit better, but of course that’s just my preference.
They’re great to drink from and the lack of stem in my experience makes them harder to break. But we have had one break in the 2 years they’ve been in our listing. We started with 8 and now we’re down to 7.
We don’t have huge numbers to use (only 4 airbnbs over 5 years), but based on the experience we’ve had, the glass stemless will break one every couple years and the glass stemmed will break 1-2 every year.
Overall, we’ve been very happy with these. Except for the one that broke, the others don’t have any stains, cracks or chips in them. Plus, they come in cheaper than the plastic set.
Amazon Basics Stemless Wine Glasses
We bought this set of stemless Amazon Basics wine glasses for our newest listing. I’ll be honest, we bought because they were cheap and because we’ve had good luck with Amazon Basics products in the past.
I like to put new items we’ve bought on the list because, even though we can’t speak to the longevity of the product, it shows what factors we’re currently looking at.
For this new listing, price was a factor (this set is very affordable) and we just really think the real glass creates a more luxurious experience for anyone who breaks out the wine glasses.
We’re accepting that a glass or two will likely break in the coming years, but it a tradeoff we’re happy to accept since the price is low.
All in all, your choice in wine glasses isn’t going to make or break your Airbnb business. In our experience, fewer than 20% of our guests actually use them.
However, if you buy something that’s too easy to break, then you may end up having to replace them far too often. This is why we only by stemless or plastic. And I recommend you do the same.