Does anyone use Owner Rez or other software sites (besides the big ones) that allow direct bookings?
Is there any way to hint/direct guests to these sites on Airbnb/VRBO?
I’m considering using this software and wonder if anyone likes it.
I’m tired of the crap customer service from Airbnb and VRBO that I get pressured from guests to compensate for.
I’d like to get any business I can off these sites.
So you want to cherry pick the sites for potential guests to book direct with you?
Quick way to get suspended from the OTA’s.
I get the guests from the sites and if the stay is successful I offer that they can book direct next time. This has been succesfull for me as I am 90% booked - 80% direct.
I was going to mention one but it appears to be blacklisted on this site. I don’t know if it even still exists, and I wasn’t recommending it as I don’t know of any hosts that claimed to be successful with it. I suspect the same will be true for most direct booking sites, but it will likely depend on how touristy your area. Airbnb and VRBO have marketing machines that bring in bookings and that’s why they charge their high fees and keep doing things hosts (and guests) don’t like.
Don’t do it. Just pay them for their service. However, nothing prevents you from direct booking repeat guests, and those guests are going to be the ones you want anyway. Several hosts here direct-book repeat guests and I’m sure they will be happy to help. If you don’t get any responses, you may need to start a new thread to ask the right question.
A trick - I coded the Airbnb phone number with the name AIRBNB do not answer. When the phone rings, that’s what I hear and know to let it go to VM. (I almost never correspond with Airbnb reps on the phone). If you don’t answer the phone (and they will call even if you ask them not to.) they will send you a message. I respond to the message.
I ignore all requests for refunds, compensation. It’s alway written so it’s easy to just ignore. They are always going to ask. In the rare event I give a partial refund it’s because something happened that I feel the guest is justified for asking.
For example - 2 weeks ago, I lost power in the evening for 6 hours in 95 weather in the evening. The guest were checking out the next morning so it didn’t really make sense to try to find a new place. I refunded the one night before they asked. Got a 5 star review although that wasn’t my motivation. I barely slept that night and doubt they did too.
I also blocked Airbnb so they have to respond in writing. Otherwise they close the case if I don’t pick up the phone and I have to start over.
I offer refunds in excess of my cancellation policy whenever I can. But now guests are getting mad because Airbnb keeps their whole fee and tell the guests to get me to issue full refund. I can’t always issue a full refund. I am tired being held accountable for Airbnbs strict policies when im personally more generous.
So one time I was looking to rent a condo. I found on VRBO. I did a bit of digging and booked direct with the property manager site. I found their property manager site by looking up host name on Google. I saved thousands of $$$. As a host I’m trying to set this up.
I used to not mind paying or asking guests to pay service fees. I was happy with VRBO and Airbnb. I’m not anymore and don’t feel a need to protect their business anymore.
I’m not trying to break terms of service and get kicked off though. I can’t avoid using them as a marketing tool for my property at this point.
It’s not an effort to be cheap. I just am really unhappy with their service to guests and hosts alike.
I totally understand your attitude. If a company wants customers to be loyal, they need to instill confidence in their users that they will be suitably responsive when there are issues. The more they show how little they care, the less guilty their users feel about coming up with workarounds.
You reap what you sow, karma, whatever you want to call it.
Love OwnerRez. Love the added autonomy and control.
you dont hint them over to OwnerRez. OwnerRez is a channel mgr. You could hint them to your property website and then process your bookings direct and track them and take the money through owner rez.
There are many ways to hint. And only a few travelers pick up on it. I have my actual address right in the listing. I have my actual name as host. It takes nothing to find me online. Occassionally someone does find me. But when they message through the site I am firm that once they come through the site, then they pay that service fee…I cant advise them any other way.
Ok thanks. This is helpful and what I am looking to do. Its what I did as a guest described above. I didn’t contact them through any site but direct site but was on VRBO when I first saw the property.
It’s a bummer that people don’t find your direct site often. Do you still find the price of owner rez worth it? Do you find managing the various sites easier using owner rez vs logging into each hosting platform separately?
I wish there was a bit more hosting platforms competition out there as I think they’d all try harder…
OwnerRez makes it all easier and gives more control to the owner. I always thought TripAdvisor / Flipkey would get in the game, but they are failing miserably. I had high hopes for Craigslist jumping on the opportunity but they turned their backs. I think OwnerRez is the channel mgr that will eventually dominate the others. It is a good product with good customer service. They are growing.
Google travel seems to be picking up among younger travelers. No fees. (Replaced Google trips in 2019)
If I must contact Airbnb customer service, I like using a private message on Twitter @airbnbhelp. It keeps everything in writing.