Key Exchange & Key Drop Box for Vacation Rentals

At Rentals United we know from our clients that running from check-in to check-out can be a major stress factor. One way to deal with this pain point or (at least as a backup) is to use specialised companies in key exchange and key drop box for vacation rentals. We researched such services in Europe, UK and the States and found these 4 companies that have slightly different ways of doing things and different pricing! Looking for more peace of mind with your check-ins? Dive into the world of vacation rental key exchange!

1. iKeyBnb – in Barcelona

Key Dop Box Vacation Rentals Ikeybnb
iKeyBnb is a Barcelona Key Drop-Box company, available 24/7/365! This convenient box in the centre of Barcelona allows you to check-in and -out your guests remotely (or let in your cleaning or maintenance service), whenever or wherever you are. Even if you’re in town, you can keep a backup key in case the actual key gets lost or damaged.

*Process

    Using a QR code, the system is very simple;

  • Step 1; Register online, and get your account setup
  • Step 2; Drop off your key at an iKeyBnb machine (the 1st is on Plaza de Cataluña)
  • Step 3; Share the unlock code (QR scan) with your guests
  • Step 4; Your guests can pick up the key!

Simple, eh?

*Pricing

iKeyBnb offers 3 different pricing choices; Single Stop (4€/day), Unlimited (25€ per month, billed annually), and Face To Face on Demand (iKeyBnb delivers the key to the guest on an agreed time and place. Collection is also possible. The price varies per situation). Also, iKeyBnb offers a free trial and a referrals program with 20% discount. Find out more on their website!

*Safety

The data which is transferred from iKeyBnb server to the machines (and vice versa) are encrypted, the machines are manually and electronically locked, and to access the machine you must have the QR code or a 6-digit code. The machines are located in safe spots (inside stores) and are monitored by CCTV, and you will get notified by email whenever your key is dropped off, picked up, or returned. Lastly, there is no connection between your key and the address of your apartment, so they are completely anonymous.

2. Hoard – in Major European Cities


Hoard is a key exchange platform, which allows you to store your keys in trusted local shops, a.k.a Hoard Spots. This way, you can have your guests checking in while you’re at the beach in the Bahamas (**we’re also allowed a holiday from time to time yes?!**). Hoard operates in many major European cities. The system is adequately simple, you just have to choose one the trusted partner shops in your near vicinity, and book it!

*Process

  • Step 1; Book a Hoard spot, get the Hoard code and share it with your guest
  • Step 2; Drop-off your key at the spot you’ve booked
  • Step 3; Your guest can pick up your key with the code you shared with them

*Pricing

Per storage of one key set, you will pay 3€. You can store one keyset for 14 days, afterward each additional week will cost 1€. You either pay for Hoard online with credit card or via PayPal.

*Safety

The staff is trained for handovers and the keys are securely stored anonymously. Find out more about Hoard here!

3. KeyCafe – many US cities + Amsterdam, London, and Paris


Keycafe is a safe key exchange service which offers a simple way for vacation rental owners to manage the key exchange with their guests. It’s located in multiple cities in the US, and in Europe in Amsterdam, London, and Paris. The key storage locations are nearby cafeterias, and your guests can pick up the keys to your vacation rental anytime during the cafe’s opening hours.

*Process

  • Step 1; Store your keys at nearby location to your vacation rental
  • Step 2; You can assign access remotely by your phone
  • Step 3; You’re notified by a text message when your keys are picked up and dropped off.

*Pricing

You get billed 4.95€ Monthly (billed annually), and you pay 1.95€ per key pick-up. This will offer you unlimited guests and storage, plus 24/7 support.

*Safety

To assure you of security matters, the keys are anonymous, and there is no personal information (ID, address etc) at the location or the actual key. KeyCafe uses RFID (radio frequency identification) technology to encode a fob that only KeyCafe can trace back to your account. Also, the keys are trackable! The KeyCafe fob tracks your keys from the moment of check-in to check-out. And as already mentioned, you’ll receive a text message and email when your guest has accessed the keys. They have user authorization, software intrusion detection systems, and many more qualities to ensure safety.

Ps. Keycafe offers a free trial with 2 key pick ups. If you want to learn more, visit their website.

4. KeyNest – in the UK


KeyNest is a UK based key exchange company which very much works like the other key exchange companies above: key storage locations are nearby cafeterias, and your guests can pick up the keys to your vacation rental anytime during the cafe’s opening hours.

*Process

  • Step 1; Dropping off your keys the first time – Register your key online, you’ll receive a code which you can
    then use to deposit your key at your chosen location.
  • Step 2; Key Collection – Select your closest keyNest, provide your guests with the collection code, and get
    notified when the keys are picked up.
  • Step 3; The regular key drop off (after first time) – You only have to hand in the keys over the counter, and
    you’ll get notified when your keys have been dropped off.

*Pricing

KeyNest offers two pricing methods;
1. Pay as you go – 5.95£ per key collection
2. Unlimited plan – 14.95£ per month, per key-set (billed annually)
The drop-off is always free!

*Safety

You’ll never have to provide an exact address for KeyNest, the staff is trained to handle and store your keys safely and securely, the collection codes cannot be re-used, and you will always get a notification when they keys are collected and dropped off.
More information about KeyNest can be found here!


Do you have experience of one of these VR services? Tell us about it in the comment section below!

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