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As a host why would you list your property on booking.com?

Can anyone explain the advantages of listing on booking.com compared to airbnb?

Apart from claiiming a damage deposit directly from the guest, I struggle to see any benefit to using booking.com

My friend recently listed on bdc.

Guest used the property for the purpose of prostitution, they broke all the house rules, caused damage and they didn’t follow any of the check out instructions.

After seeing the violations on cctv, bdc told my friend that she couldn’t kick out the guest until their stay had ended. They also stated that bdc would not offer any support in terms of damage by the guest.

The only action bdc take is to put a note on the guests record for ‘misconduct’ (lol), however the guest is free to go book another property.

So in theory a guest could trash your property, steal your 4K tv, break all of the house rules and bdc will do nothing.

On bdc, hosts cannot review the guest and they cannot decline a guests reservation.

So what exactly is the benefit of using bdc?

I have no idea. A friend of mine tried them out for the small hostel she has been running for 20 years. She mainly advertises on hostelling sites.

She said the BDC guests she got were the worst quality of guests she’s ever had. That is, the ones who showed up- lots were no shows.

To add insult to injury, she never got paid for any of the bookings.

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The payment set up can be difficult.
I accept the B.com virtual card, guest credit card. My policies are set to strictest possible.
I pay the invoices from them on the due date.
I really dislike the discounts they do
3% credit card fee
10% genius discount
15% commission.

28% off the top and then you are supposed the cheapest price on B.com.
I get about 20% booked through them.
Had a great guest who booked, rang me once she had the number… offered to cancel and book direct! Which is what she did.

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I agree with you. I too do not see a benefit with using BDC. I imagine some hosts use it because they’re not getting enough traffic on Airbnb.

There doesn’t seem to be much benefit of using booking in my part of U.S. as it doesn’t seem to be as popular. Airbnb and Vrbo (in this order) seem to be the top two.

That’s pretty a decent %. Assuming I get 20%, would you recommend booking overall from your experience with guests and the service?

We will open our new stay soon. As before, it will be listed on All major OTAs, as well as our own site for direct bookings.
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Booking has more or less foothold, depending on ones area. Here, it is minor. We will certainly list it at a premium to compensate for the extra fees and hopefully people will figure out how to see it there and book direct :slight_smile:
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As to “not being able to decline a reservation” - bs - it is Our Place. We have the right to refuse any guest and do not need to justify it to some call center worker.

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I have my property listed on both Airbnb and BDC. For the past few months pretty much all my bookings are on BDC. To me the main downsides are not being able to review a guest and their higher commission fees. I’ve been able to refuse guests by saying sorry due to a system malfunctioning the room has been double booked with Airbnb. And BDC have normally been able to find the guest another place. And this is at no cost to me.

But I’ve only find this twice because i ended up with two bookings straight after each other and I could not prepare the room in time.

My apartment is an inner city one so I tend to get more business travellers so for the past year I’ve been lucky and not just a bad stay.

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This in itself is huge, I collect and hold the deposit.

It is not a one or the other thing, I have Air, booking and vrbo

Heads in beds

RR

Booking is instant book. So there is no way to decline a reservation, You can cancel, but it can cost you.

RR

I barely get any BDC bookings, but I need to be prepared should AirBnb shut me down someday. It happens.
Diversify.

RR

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Personally I find their platform light years ahead of Airbnb in terms of flexibility of different min length of stay for different periods, and pricing and specials. I have also found the customer support so much more prompt and knowledgeable than Airbnb. All my problem guests are Airbnb none BDC. For me the fees are cheaper. Airbnb charges me 3.5% to process the payment with BDC my bank charges me 1.5% . I get charged 12% + tax booking fee which I load into the pricing same as Airbnb which charges the guest. The genius loyalty discount is optional. There is no way I would ever give a discount for being loyal to someone else marketing Chanel. I only give a loyalty discount to my direct booking repeat customers. With BDC I hold onto the deposit and advance payment and have complete control, with Airbnb they hold onto the money sometimes for up to 9 months and I have to wait up to a week after the guests arrive to get paid. My bookings through BDC are growing and falling through Airbnb. The downsides are that it is instant book only. The syncing takes care of double booking for all other platforms except my own. I have to be quick to remove the dates on BDC when someone books on my site. I do get more cancellations through BDC but I have more control to do a deal to get the guest to except a partial or full credit against a future booking.

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I get maybe 30% bookings from bdc. I detest their website. So cumbersome and difficult to use, and their messaging service is terrible. For over a year there have been major issues, with messages not showing up, or showing up in the Pulse app but not online, or the message counter not clearing once you read a message. The Airbnb app allows you to do anything, where bdc app Pulse is a message service that doesn’t work so well. Also, bdc you can’t review guests and have it mean anything, where Airbnb is much better in this regard. I also struggled with bdc support.

So given they seem to have enough guests booking, it seems worth it to use them, but Airbnb is just so much easier to use as a booking platform. So I am grudgingly continuing to use them, while hoping dear God please have them wake up and redesign their site and app to be user friendly, such as a messaging system that actually works. For such a large company, you think they would have the 101 basics sorted.

Really, the only benefit of bdc is they DO provide a lot of bookings, not as many as Airbnb I find, but overall it means it’s worth putting up with all the other issues. Incidentally, I price bdc above Airbnb using discounts to favour Airbnb (which is another thing bdc doesn’t support like Airbnb does), even if rack rates are the same. Because the Airbnb platform is so much better, and I feel much safer in protection for issues than bdc… so I intentionally want to favour guests coming from the better platform.

Also I find bdc guests are more expecting hotel service, where Airbnb guests seem to connect with you more as a friend coming to stay. The quality of guest and interactions is noticeable. I don’t want to run a faceless hotel. This is my home. BDC seems like a hotel service that adds a small home booking department, where Airbnb is a dedicated home sharing platform. So different!

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Understood. And we would not hesitate to cancel a booking after “IB” regardless of platform, if we had legit cause over the Guest.
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We’ll see how things have changed since Covid. Perhaps now, BDC will provide bookings.
Previously, we got one total through them in 6 months.

As guests, my wife and I have booked twice through BDC instead of AirBnB simply because it was less expensive. We are definitely good guests and we very thoroughly understand short-term-rentals and hosting, but when we see the same property on Airbnb, VRBO, and BDC, we, like many other guests, choose the lowest price when the difference is significant.

So, that brings the question: Why were the two bookings we made on BDC less expensive than the exact same booking through AirBnB or VRBO? Unfortunately, we never hosted on BDC. We did create a listing on VRBO, but we never actually published it, so we don’t have any real reference outside of AirBnB. Still, we’ve only been STR guests 3 times since we started hosting and every time, the properties re rented were listed on AirBnB and either VRBO or BDC, but were cheaper to rent the through VRBO or BDC. There must be a reason, and I’m interested to know myself.

Because of the Airbnb fees. My last guests paid an extra $170 on a $1000 booking. My fee was $30.
That makes the Airbnb cut 20% of the booking!
B.con also has in the T & C’s that their listing has to be the cheapest on line.
It will be interesting when Airbnb goes to the universal 15% fee paid for by the host.

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I reckon we’ve only had a couple of non Genius bookings in the past couple of years and now if you sign up to BDC as a guest, you get the Genius discount even on your first stay. All you do is adjust your BDC pricing, adding 10%, and that way your net remains the same. @ocker if you haven’t opted in to Genius then I’d suggest you consider what I’ve mentioned, it’s a no lose situation.

Totally agree, and others I know who are on multiple platforms also agree.

This appears to be a trend in certain areas/countries. BDC overtook Airbnb during 2019 with us, and they are now our main provider. In our little corner of Spain the market is saturated with Airbnb listings, almost three times that of BDC. Lots of new listings, and lots of empty calendars.

Even long established Airbnb hosts appear to have an awful lot of availability on many listings, and a lot of folks who I considered to be part of our competitive set have nada for this July and August.

It’s only " difficult to use" if you haven’t taken the time to learn how to use it, and once you do it’s a far better, and more importantly, far more stable platform than Airbnb.

We’ve never had an issue with either the messaging system or sending/receiving with Pulse.

Seriously? I can do almost all routine tasks on Pulse if I want to, from checking payments to adding promotions, maybe you should actually take the time to get to know the tools BDC provide you with.

Well, funny you should mention that :rofl: I’ll post about our first experience with that later.

BDC is different to Airbnb and, as I’ve said before, it’s not for everyone. Yes, there is a learning curve with the site and app, but it’s not brain surgery or rocket science! Though, if I had a home share listing, then personally I’d never consider BDC, it’s just not the correct platform right now.

Yes, it’s IB only but it always has been in recent years, so I don’t know why some hosts complain about it, when they knew fine well that was the scenario from the off. You want to pick and choose your guests, then stick with Airbnb. For those that consider it “heads in beds” (© @RiverRock ), then dependent on your location, it’s a good platform.

We don’t have any guest filters set with Airbnb ad IB is active. I could count on the fingers of one hand the number of enquiry/RTB/IB’s we’ve refused since 2017. We do have an edge on many other hosts though, we are online with the Comisaria de Policia and at check in a valid national ID card or a passport must be shown. No ID, or refusal, no bed.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying BDC is perfect, far from it, but then again neither is Airbnb. When it comes to the “race to the bottom”, they are just as guilty as Airbnb for pushing hosts to reduce prices. One big difference is that when it comes to support issues, BDC are definitely less guest centric, especially over cancellation issues. Non refundable means non refundable with BDC, unlike Airbnb’s wishy washy policy!

JF

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Here’s the portal showing I have one unread message for example.
But it’s also saying there are no unread messages.

I select all messages, and it shows me one guest message that it thinks is unanswered, yet there is no ‘Mark as done’ option here anyway. Which I find a bit cumbersome as a feature, but if the message is believed by the system to be unread or responded to, there should be a way to clear this, but I can’t. I reported it to support twice, and they have said sorry and that they have a lot of issues with messaging. I last called them as I could see messages coming on email, but they were not showing at all in Pulse or the web portal which is a worry. Anyway, that seems to have been finally fixed at least.

But here are two messaging issues I can see just today as an example.

I went to Pulse, and the first thing I tried is to change rates. I quickly found the page saying rates, but then discovered it’s only the rates for children. Airbnb doesn’t have this and I think it’s a bit odd and cumbersome. I’d say one bed, one person, as children don’t reduce washing, or in fact probably add more mess as it is! So reduced child rates may be what, to give a family a discount because kids are expensive?

Anyway, Airbnb’s app is super easy to change rates. Am I not looking in the right place, or is changing rates something you can’t do with BDC via Pulse?

SO I hate to be critical, and any IT system is damn hard to get right I know. But if they are so big, then why do I still have messaging issues I reported months ago, and they seem to only have fixed the missing messages issue, not the bad count of unread messages. I wasn’t notified of the fix either, it just seems to work now. I assumed they would say your ticket has been resolved, it’s working now, thanks for reporting. But it’s a black hole.

I DO like BDC ability to set global per day pricing, such as Thursday or Sunday. This used to be supported on Airbnb, but sadly they simplified their system and made it weekend pricing only, and weekend being Fri+Sat only. So can’t set shoulder rates for the days either side. A minor annoyance, but I give BDC credit here at least.

Anyway, I still use BDC, but just keep hoping their site usability and app functionality (with e.g. setting rates) will improve. I prefer VRBO to them hands down, but Airbnb seems to have the easiest calendar for sure. For example, I can super easily scroll to any date, where seems BDC you have to select the dates from a calendar, and then only these are shown. You can’t just keep scrolling to the next month if you want like Airbnb… you have to go enter the settings to THEN see the calendar. Why the extra hassle? Small, but I see it as too many of these friction points.

Anyway, thanks for responding. I did check Pulse and it has a bit more functionality than I had first thought, but rates is probably one I would use very frequently, and yet seems a feature it’s missing. Unless I got it wrong?

I Charge about 10% more to offset what BDC charges me, I still make less.

Air charges me 3%
BDC 15% plus I run the CC for 3% so it cost me 5% more with BDC

I do not get many BDC’s anyway so IDC

Diversify and protect against losing access to any of the platforms is rerason enough to keep them.

RR

With Pulse, got to Availability then select either a single day or multiple days. Then click on Rates and Restrictions where you can edit prices and min length of stay. It allows you to edit as many Rate Plans, for the selected days, as you have active.

Suggests that you may not have your property’s Policies set up correctly.

We do not have a child rate, all that shows is our active Rate Plans.

JF

Goodness, you are helpful.

I had seen that tab, but didn’t notice if you scroll, you see rates at the bottom section. So I found it. Yay!

Then I went to change the min nights, or the min advance reservation days.
Both controls were not responsive. Sigh.

After quite some mental gymnastics, I discovered that to set the ‘Standard rate’ values for min stay and min advance, you can’t have the calendar ‘focussed’ on a day that is booked or in the past. And of course the calendar screen opens for me with this day as the first one selected. So my controls are inactive. And trying to use them doesn’t give any help.

It is mind bogglingly bad UI, and while I figured it out, I wonder how many others would bother trying, or how often they pay support staff to answer this question.

I am grateful to you for helping me discover this section… but it almost seems to prove my point. I struggle to find it, then when I do it doesn’t work, but also doesn’t say why. Goodness, just adding some help window ‘Set to a date that is open to allow this control to work’ would do wonders.

But I can’t see how the standard rate settings don’t apply to any date, regardless. Are they not ‘standard’? And if there is some way to set min night for SOME dates and not others, then this raises the question of why these controls are under the standard rate setting… though it would surely be simpler to use the Airbnb style setting of min nights for the listing than ‘per date’?

I guess my main gripe is there is just so many small issues that seem badly designed or not working. But your help has raised my awareness of the Pulse app at least. Now I know more of the ‘quirks’ to workaround. I just never seem to find quirks in Airbnb though.

BTW There are several ways to give BDC feedback, and I found bugs with two of them. I’d click Give feedback, enter a short note of what was not working, and click Submit… and the system would say ‘System error’. Ironic that you can’t even bug report as the bug report has a bug, in two DIFFERENT sections of their site.

But thank you for your reply. It’s appreciated and I now give BDC more points for functionality. But it’s still behind others in my view!

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