BiteSize: Partner Email notifications for cancellations with OPTIONS to choose to approve
As of last Night I got my first email of this type.
What is it?
Essentially its partly what we have been asking for, a way to veto cancellation requests with multiple options presented to choose from.
Booking.com Partner Veto options Example email
Thank you for working with Booking.com.
We’re reaching out to you about reservation [Reservation Number] for [Guest Name].
The guest has already cancelled this reservation. We’re aware that there is a penalty associated with the cancellation but request that you exceptionally waive the fees.
Booking.com will not charge commission if you decide to waive the cancellation charge.
My country is under lockdown due to Covid-19. It is no longer safe to travel and my family is currently undergoing self-isolation. This is not an ideal situation hence all travel plans is being cancelled. Many apologies for everything.
Please consider the guest’s request and let us know of your decision by clicking one of the options below. Note these options below are all clickable links to then start the action
- [PARTNER] will waive the entire cancellation fee 85.50 EUR.
- [PARTNER]will charge a reduced fee. (You can specify the fee before you confirm this).
- [PARTNER]will charge or has already charged the cancellation penalty 85.50 EUR as stated in the booking conditions.
- [PARTNER]has already charged the cancellation fee. The guest can, however, use the charged amount as a non-refundable deposit towards a future reservation.
Thank you in advance for your understanding and cooperation.
booking.com Option 4 Voucher Issued It does not actually state when a voucher is paid out to the Partner. I.e. does the partner get the ordinal booking paid out from when the cancellation is confirmed ; or paid out when the original checkout date occurs and then in the next pay roll for that period.
I would say this as this is quite an important. distinction.
Other OTA and options example
I found out this morning some other OTA like Expedia where a voucher is issued to the guest for up to 12 months.
The conditions for the voucher imply you as a partner will never get paid the original booking on or after check-in /checkout date. But instead only paid when the guest rebooks, and only rebooks your property.
That to me is a red flag and not something I would like to see Booking.com do either.
Dear partner, We are pleased to confirm that we’ve honored your request, or the request of your headquarters, to opt your property out of the Global Cancellation Waiver program for non-refundable bookings made prior to March 19, for stays between March 20th and April 30, 2020. The program was implemented under force majeure circumstances when global governments restricted travel to contain the spread of COVID-19. The information below will help you understand the 1-year voucher program, which was created to help you recoup income from cancellations made under the force majeure cancellation policy. Here are the key elements of the program:
1. Most bookings are eligible for vouchers, but not all
- The vast majority of bookings made through the Expedia Group websites are eligible for vouchers.
- The voucher process doesn’t work some bookings like Hotel Collect bookings, Hotwire and Egencia bookings, and bookings from affiliate partners. For these bookings, cancellation fees will be waived and customers will be refunded in cash.
2. For each canceled booking, voucher-eligible or not, you will receive a cancellation message, as well as tracking information on issued vouchers
- If a traveler cancels, you will receive a standard cancellation notification from our system.
- For each canceled booking eligible for a voucher, you will receive additional information allowing you to keep track of those travelers.
3. For voucher-eligible cancellations, we will issue a 1-year voucher to travelers
- Instead of a cash refund, Expedia will offer a voucher for the amount of the canceled booking.
- The voucher will be good for 1-year from the date that it is issued (the voucher expiration will extend beyond 1-year in some countries where required by law).
- The voucher is specifically valid to rebook your property on our websites.
4. You will receive payment for the voucher bookings when the customer redeems or after voucher expires if the customer hasn’t rebooked at your property
- When a traveler uses a voucher to rebook their stay, hence creating a new reservation, you will be paid for the booking per our usual process.
- If the traveler doesn't use the voucher within the one-year period (or any longer period required by local law), we intend to pay you the amount you would have received for the original booking (unless the value has to be returned to the traveler, a government or other entity).
In addition to this information, and to help you navigate the current situation and prepare for recovery, we suggest you use the following support tools available on a self-serve basis:
- Help and Support article for information partners are finding most valuable on COVID-19
- Review how you can initiate a cancellation in Partner Central
Please know the financial hardship faced by our partners is at the forefront of minds and is considered in every decision we make. We are committed to evaluating all options that will help our partners, revive our industry and give travelers the confidence to rebook holidays and new adventures.