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This being our first year of operation we only had one guest show up early. Our check-in time is from 3 PM to 10 PM unless arranged otherwise ahead of time. They arrived at 11:30 AM. Thankfully the room was ready as we had just finished it. Guests, if they book the room on BDC themselves the check-in time is clearly stated. After they have booked their room we email them our Guest Policies which states the check-in time. The day they are due to arrive I typically send a text message re-iterating the check-in time but stating the room is ready and they can check in any time. Another guest really appreciated it is they had flown into town really early and had not had much sleep. So they checked in and were able to catch a few hours of sleep before starting their vacation. They mentioned it in their 10/10 review.
When we recommend restaurants we ask our guests to say we recommended them just to get our name out there. We have not yet set up any formal agreements with any other businesses.
I am not sure our set up will work for you as you mention that you have multiple properties. We operate a small bed and breakfast in Canada. We have a Channel Manager and Property Management System (PMS) that integrates with a payment processing gateway (stripe.com). The guest books through Booking.com *BDC), the reservation is forwarded to our PMS (cloudbeds.com) which captures the credit card information and, updates our calendar as well as updating our other OTA calendars. We then process the charge through the PMS software for each booking. We need on to enter the total amount to charge the credit card, the credit card details are automatically submitted to the payment processing gateway. So unless you enter the incorrect amount there is little chance for error.
We are using Cloudbeds (MyAllocator) for a channel manager. From my understanding, it depends on the connectivity between the OTA and Channel Manager. Some channels have full connectivity to all activities and some only have limited connectivity. Here is a screenshot of the connectivity features between Cloudbeds and BDC:
This month Cloudbeds (MyAllocator) has begun implementing full, real-time connectivity with AirBnB.
There are a lot of channel managers to choose. Here is a link to an existing discussion on Channel Managers in general:
Hi Magnolia Beach
You will need to contact BDC (booking.com) support for this type of correction as I do not see any way to edit using the extranet (admin.booking.com).
Using the extranet (admin.booking.com). Select the "InBox" icon --> then "Booking.com Messages". From there on the lower right side of the screen, you will see "Compose a new message" icon you can click on to email support. Alternately below the is "Other Questions" with a local support phone number.
Thanks for providing the link to Hotel vs B&B post!
The grouping of "Hotels, B&B's and more" does not always show up when doing searches but it just started showing up randomly in the last few days. Sometimes all Property type individual filters are initially available then when I click on an something like "Private Bathroom" filter then when it is applied the next screen shows the property type grouping "Hotels, B&B's and more". Having said all that I just tried again and this time the property type filter never grouped but stayed individual. So I tried again and after entering my location, dates and number of guests the following appeared:
And when I scroll down the filters to the page to the Property Filters I see this:
When this happens as you can see the prospective guest cannot filter to see only B&B's. I guess I should report my concerns to BDC support?
Could not find the previous post on "What is a B&B" so let me digress a bit. Traditionally in Canada, a B&B indicated a Bed and Breakfast. Basically, you stayed in the hosts home, had a bedroom to sleep in and breakfast was served to you. I believe that AirBnB has created some confusion, even though the founders model was a bed and breakfast model using a air matress in their livingroom, hence the name AIrBnB. I believe most of the listings on AIrBnB now are for whole homes, condo's, or suites with kitchens.
I know when I talk to our guests the common theme is that that generally speaking hotel guests are different than B&B guests. Hotel guests typically pick Hotel's first and B&B guests pick B&B's first when searching. Therefore, lumping the Property Type's together is a disservice to the person performing the search and it also buries us in the filtered, yet expanded, search results that are presented to the potential guest. Now they have to visually sort through the property types to identify only B&B's.
Our guests often ask us for recommendations. We only recommend where we have been and enjoyed whether it be a restaurant or a local attraction. After a guest returns, I always ask them how they liked it to get the feedback that I need to continue recommending a place or activity. You cannot guarantee that everyone will have a great experience. However, I think it is better to recommend what you know rather than to not be helpful when they ask.
I agree that good photos are important. They don't say a picture is worth a thousand words for nothing. Accurate representation is also important as I have read some reviews on other properties stating the photos looked good but when they arrived at the property the photo's must have been taken years ago and they place was not what the photos showed. Photography is a hobby of mine so I am able to produce our photo's using Lightroom & Photoshop. Some of our guests said that the photos helped them to decide to stay at our Bed and Breakfast other B&B's in our area.