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Just an update: "luck" is what I need. It has happened again. I have exactly one "room to sell" and once again a date range that was already booked (this time via Homeaway, with the calendar correctly synced) has been booked by booking.com
Partner services inform me that booking.com are "having technical problems importing calendars", but in this case the calendar was correct a few days ago, showing the dates as blocked.
That does not, of course, explain with the other two cases occurred where both the original booking, and the duplicate ones, came from booking.com.
This has now taken many hours of my time, and given the number of other bugs and problems I've had with booking.com I'm really not sure it is worth continuing. The competition does a vastly better job!
Thank you for answering, but I don't think you read what I said at all.
First off, note that I have been in the holiday rental market for 16 years, and all major platforms offer an "instant confirmation" system. I don't need to have it explained!
Note that what follows is all system-generated. At no time did I try and manually change the calendar except the one instance at the end - and I did that on advice of the Partner Services agent.
I have one "room to sell" (it's a single apartment). The period Dec 30 2019 to Jan 4 2020 was booked on Jan 12 2019.
All well and good: Rooms to sell 1, Net Booked 1
On June 10 2019 the system confirmed a booking from a guest in Russia for Dec 29 to Jan 6.
Now showing Rooms to sell 1, Net Booked 2. This is of course impossible.
I spent several days chasing this matter, and many emails and some hours on the phone. After I made this post I spoke to Partner Services, who agreed with a previous agent that this was a booking.com error and that I would not be responsible for costs or guest relocation. I received an email to this effect on 14 June.
At 7.36 on Jun 16 I received a guest cancellation, but I assumed that this was internally generated.
At 9.46 on Jun 16 I received another booking, from a differently named Russian guest, for the same dates - Dec 29 to Jan 6.
I once again spoke to Partner Services, who were very apologetic. However, as of today (18 Jun) this second error is still present, and I have received no response to my request for an overall explanation.
During my call with Partner Services on Jun 14 I noted that another period (Dec 21 to 27) showed:
Rooms to sell: 1, Net Booked 1, Room status Available. Again, this should not be possible.
We corrected this manually, but it shows that there is a persistent underlying error.
In my 16 years dealing with the various major online booking platforms I have never had so many problems as I've had in the first 6 months with booking.com. If it wasn't for the extra business generated, I'd have given up on booking.com some while ago.
Yes, thanks, that was the backstop, but it does create some problems if used routinely by many owners.
Our property is in France, and booking.com is required to submit accurate revenue statements to the French tax authorities, and also is required to collect tourist tax and remit that to the local authority.
If people go "under the wire" there is a possibility that questions will be asked: France at least is becoming VERY tight about this sort of thing.
The facility for an owner to adjust dates is only available once the guest has checked in - not sure why!
I do find booking.com very inflexible compared to the competition, who all permit this sort of thing freely. But they do generate business-.