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Cleaning, Laundry & Check-Ins Made Easy For Your Vacation Rentals With Doinn

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June isn’t over yet and we’re already introducing you to our 4th partnership of 2018: Doinn, a specialised cleaning, laundry & check-in/out service for your vacation rentals.

What’s Doinn?

As Doinn defines itself, it is a “technology bridge between short-term rental properties and hotel services vendors”. Their mission is to bring the hotel cleaning professional companies one click away from the vacation rental managers, automating the cleaning and laundry services with the booking reservations and offering a unified customer support, independently of the number of vendors you work with or in how many cities.

  • Cleaning with Doinn: By bringing professional housekeeping hotel providers to the vacation rental industry, they bring their experience in hospitality, and more important, their legal, insured and trained employees able to follow the well defined Standard Operating Procedures (SOP)

  • Laundry with Doinn: Doinn launders your own linen or allows you to rent, launder & sanitize hotel-quality linen, at no extra cost.

  • Check-ins/outs with Doinn: Doinn works with well-trusted and trained welcomers, providing your guests with helpful tips about your property and its surroundings.

Their platform is tailor-made done for managing and booking the services needed for vacation rentals, from API synchronization, uploading of group of properties in bulk, to online payments for the services. The software they have for the service providers helps them to optimize their operations and team of cleaners.

Already a BookingSync client?

Create a user profile at https://Doinn.co/ and activate the Bookingsync integration at the Integrations tab. Sync all your listings and bookings, which will then be imported in Doinn. You can now seamlessly schedule the cleaning and laundry services you need, according to your reservations, and get access to the best local cleaning providers.

For now, Doinn is available in several countries: France (Paris), Portugal (Lisbon, Porto, Almada, Ericeira, Setùbal, Sintra, Albufeira, Aljezur, Almada, Castro Marim, Faro, Lagoa, Lagos, Loulé, Olhão, Portimão, Silves, Sintra, Tavira, Vila do Bispo, Vila Real de Santo António and Spain (Madrid, Barcelona). If you are willing to grow nationally or internationally, Doinn will save you plenty of time to get established in a new city.

Getting started with Doinn

Read our manual to know how to install and use the app.
Already a BookingSync client? Install the Doinn app in our App Center right now and watch our live webinar on June, 14th at 4pm CEST!

5 Tips For A Family-Friendly Vacation Rental

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Families are generally accepted in vacation rentals, but are yours really prepared for young children?

Let’s review together a few tips on how you can improve your rental offer and adapt it to most travelers.

Targeting families: 35% of total travelers in the US

If you’re still wondering if there’s anything more to earn when targeting families, these statistics should speak for themselves: 35% of US tourists travel as families, and 44% of people aged 18-35 travel with their children.

Our client Ovo Network understood that well, and even decided to create their very own label: “Cool for kids, which ensures families will find everything they need in the selected rentals.

So, let’s get to work and see what you can do to try to attract these potential guests!

  • Secure the property: parents like to know they’ll find the same security and comfort as they do in their own home. You can, for example, add children’s safety gates to the stairs. If there’s a swimming pool available in the house, buy a solid safety pool cover or a pool alarm for a better peace of mind.

  • Equip the rentals with some basic gear: high chair, booster seat, plastic cutlery and plates, potty, baby monitor, crib, night-light… You can also prefer to install a bathtub instead of a shower, which is more convenient for young children and babies.

  • Save at least one room for children: make it colorful, add a playground with board games, DVDs, books… You can also choose to add bunk beds to the room, to save some space (and most children LOVE bunk beds!).

  • Make it fun: holidays aren’t just about museums and restaurants. It’s also about quality family time! Show families they’ll have fun not only in your city or region, but also in your property. You can also list all the family-friendly outdoor activities that are available around your house or apartment: amusement parks, beaches, playgrounds, basic hiking trails, family-friendly restaurants, etc. Which takes us to the last point…

  • Adapt your listings to families: take pictures of the family-friendly features you offer and show how your property has been secured. For example, if there’s a road near one of your rentals, specify if the garden door can be locked.

Your BookingSync listings can also be adapted, depending on the features available in the properties (open the image in a new tab for a better overview):

Of course, these are just examples of all what you can do to attract families and make them feel safe in your vacation rentals.

Have any other tips to share? Write them in the comments!

Stay In Contact With Your Guests Thanks To Wishbox

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We’re integrating today a new guest relationship management software to our App Center: Wishbox, the leading solution for vacation rental agencies and hosts.

What’s Wishbox?

Wishbox is a software that lets you automate all your guest communication, generate more revenue and drastically improve your guest experience, with no effort.

Wishbox lets you:

  • Communicate in the guests’ language

  • Send fully-customisable confirmation emails

  • Use an automatic pre check-in/check-out wizard

  • Chat with your guests thanks to an optional, unified chat tool

  • Scan passports and credit cards

  • Send property codes & apartment notes

  • Set pre-scheduled automated messages & SMSs

  • Share a guest web-app to give your guests an amazing experience

  • Create a unique guidebook for each property

  • Manage reviews thanks to an intelligent review system, pushing excellent reviews on outside websites and retaining bad reviews

Using Wishbox lets you save up to 2 hours of work per day, thanks to the automation & your own branded guest-app.

Getting started with Wishbox

Read our manual to know how to install and use the app.
Already a BookingSync client? Install the Wishbox app in our App Center right now and watch our live webinar on May, 24th at 3pm CEST!

BookingSync clients can try Wishbox for free during 21 days.

Didn't get the chance to watch our live webinar? Worry no more, we've got you covered with this recorded video below.

CanadaStays, A New Channel For Your Canadian Properties

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Aaaaand one more channel for 2018!
Discover a new channel for your Canadian properties on CanadaStays, Canada’s largest vacation rental marketplace.

What’s CanadaStays?

CanadaStays is Canada's #1 choice in vacation rentals, with over 140,000 vacation rental properties, including cottages, cabins, chalets and condos in 11,000 destinations across Canada, the US, the Caribbean and South America. CanadaStays sees 4 to 5.5 million page visits a year, providing a new opportunity to drive more Canadian travellers to your listings.

Why list with CanadaStays?

  • Increased Exposure: Access Canada’s largest vacation rental audience as well as a growing list of distribution partners, including HomeAway, VRBO, Tripping and Cottage Life, at no extra charge

  • Flexible Pricing: find your best ROI with pay-per-booking or subscription models

  • Flexible Booking Options: choose between instant booking or a 24-hour confirmation period

  • Dedicated Account Managers: maximize booking opportunities with the help of an in-house optimization team

  • Secure Payments: you and your traveller are protected by a secure payment platform

Getting started with CanadaStays

Read our manual to know how to install and use the app.
Already a BookingSync client? Download the CanadaStays app in our App Center right now and watch our live webinar on May, 17th at 5pm CEST! Meet the CanadaStays team and discover how you can sync your listings with Canada's biggest channel.

BookingSync clients will receive an exceptional discount of $100 off CanadaStays owner/manager fees + $50 off if you register before May, 28th!
Didn't get the chance to watch our live webinar? Worry no more, we've got you covered with this recorded video below.

This Simple Trick Will Change The Way You See Accounting

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Tired of filling in calculation sheets? Lost in numbers and transactions?

Like most vacation rental owners and managers, we bet you didn’t get into that business to deal with numbers… As the VR industry is facing a huge expansion, many side-businesses are being created, helping owners and managers to save time and money everyday:

Changeover management with Properly, vacation rental softwares such as ours, team management and stats with Rental Ninja, for example.

One of them decided it was high time someone jumps into the accounting case and starts developing a solution that could be beneficial to every vacation rental host: welcome to the Rental Ninja Accounting Solution!

Accounting made easy, from one single place

Imagine a tool where all of your vacation rental accounting can be made, from one place.

Following this simple idea, the Rental Ninja team worked very hard to create Accounting, the latest addition to their offer.

Here’s what you can do with Accounting:

  1. Create Accounting Statements per group of Rentals and any dates:

    1. Account for all your incomes from your bookings

    2. Payments: calculate how much you have to pay to your recipients: rental owners, cleaning/check-in agents...

    3. Know what is your net income (how much you earn, as a company).

  2. Once the recipients strategy is set, create all your Accounting Statements in the blink of an eye.

  3. Track your payments: mark a payment as paid once you transfer the money to a recipient.

  4. Send the recipient the required information: report, transfer receipt and any other attachment.

Coming soon: accounting statistics.

Payments
Payment Recipients
Booking Breakdown
Accounting Statement
Payment Details

The story behind this new tool

As you may already know, managing accounting can be difficult and painful, especially when it comes to vacation rental management. Rental Ninja, with an experience of 10 years in the industry thanks to their Easy Flat Barcelona business, knew they could bring a great solution to hosts and property owners.

Rental Ninja was born with the idea of helping people like us, with a high workload due to many repetitive tasks that, in fact, can be done in a more automatic way” says Didac Alvarado from Rental Ninja.

What is useful for us must be useful for others. We’re in a constantly growing industry, and automating tasks is the fastest way to grow. Saving time in what has a poor added value has a huge importance.

So we were obsessed with the idea of developing an accounting tool specially designed for the Vacation Rental Business. We, as many people might do, used to run with spreadsheets. However, you have to manually add all the information, and many times you just miss something. And on top of that, if a booking changes, you have to start over again... Sometimes it’s tricky to calculate how much you have to pay to each of your rental owners, check-in/cleaning agents,...

So we decided to go for it and create a solution for it all: From automation to commission calculation and owner payments. What took us two days every month, we can now achieve in about 2 hours.

Here’s a video introducing you to the Accounting tool:

Ready to save time and make your vacation rental life easier? Become a Rental Ninja and start you 30-day free trial!

Taking Over The Vacation Rental Market In Cannes: The Immogroom Case

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How Immogroom is revolutionizing the Cannes vacation rental market with the help of Properly and BookingSync
Just like we did last month, we're showcasing today another vacation rental professional: Immogroom, working since 2015 on the French Riviera.

How did they succeed to manage from 0 to 90 properties in such little time?

What tools did they use to enhance their service quality and business processes?

Have a look at this presentation to know all about this incredible expansion:

You can read the full case study directly on Properly's blog.

What If We Sent Our Software To Space, With Orion Span?

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You’ve certainly seen the latest April Fool’s articles that we posted this year and in 2017.

MarsEscapes: When Traveling To Mars Becomes Touristic

LunarBnB & BookingSync: Ready To Fly To The Moon?
Even though these articles were written for fun, traveling to space is still a dream for us all!

What if we could help space travel grow? What about turning our “Save Time, Book More” into “Save Time, Host Further”?

Space Tourism: Our dream come true

No more jokes, this time!

When we read the news announcing the first tourist space travels by 2021 by Orion Span, we just couldn’t believe it: the American start-up specialised in the aerospace industry has created the “Aurora Space Station”, a dream that now comes true.

Of course, we couldn’t just stand there waiting for it to happen.

Taking up challenges, offering innovative features, participating in the booming industry of tourism, wherever it is situated, is in our DNA. This is why we can offer today the ideal space housing tool to Orion Span.

The BookingSync tool, THE solution on the ground or in orbit

Can you really manage a space tourist housing the same way you manage a room on Earth?

That’s a good question! What we know is that some points remain essential:

  • Property Management System: easily and efficiently manage the Aurora Space Station!

The BookingSync tool allows you to manage calendars, housings, clients and pricings from a unified interface.

  • Notifications: “Only 3 months left before departure, time for your training!”

Our app allows you to automatically send messages to your teams and clients, depending on predefined parameters: payment confirmations, contracts, welcome books, customers satisfaction, email and intervention alerts, departures...

  • Payments: Tracked and secured payments, for all.

Our software is compatible with some of the most popular payment gateways: Stripe, Braintree, Paypal.

  • Website Builder: Give the Aurora Space Station the attention she deserves.

Our teams create fully customisable websites that you can adapt to your needs and desires and are: responsive, multilingual, offer an SSL certificate and can let travelers book directly or after an initial contact. A real tailored-design creation made for a nonstandard project.

  • Access to our API: Do you need to create your own training app, or simulation software? Give free rein to your imagination!

Each BookingSync client or partner can create its own program, connected to our platform, depending on their special needs and desires.

As a famous astronaut once said, together we can go “To Infinity And Beyond”.

So Orion Span, what are you waiting for? Join us! ;-)

BNBKEYS: Betting On The Province

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BNBKEYS, a management and concierge services startup, was created a year ago in Cannes, France. Now celebrating their first anniversary, we wanted to discuss with their team about their engagement towards local companies and their vision of the vacation rental industry. Here’s their testimony.

Focusing on the province: reaching different assets than in the capital

Paris gathered almost 87,000 declared Airbnb housings in September 2017, which made it owning 22% of the French vacation rental market. Yet, not all short term rentals are situated inside the capital city: BNBKEYS’s success story proves there’s still a lot to do with the rest of the country, as it has now become the first vacation rental platform on the Côte d’Azur, in just a few months.

BNBKEYS chose to develop in priority on the Côte d’Azur, then spreading to other provincial cities, choosing in priority seaside resorts such as the Basque Coast, or the Normandy Coast.

Let’s take for example the city of Cannes, where BNBKEYS was created: the town wasn’t chosen by accident. The MIPIM, LIONS and Festival de Cannes are just a few examples of the attractiveness of the city, not only for tourists but also professional travelers who can enjoy specific partnerships such as hybrid driver services, personalised advice and much more.

Creating and promoting the local fabric

Today’s travelers have evolved. As we’ve entered a time of internet and social networks, travelers now want to be able to discuss, exchange, share with the locals.

Faced with these new demands, BNBKEYS decided to develop its very own concept: to create exclusive partnerships with players in the local economy, whether they offer personal sports coaching services, hybrid driving or tourist attractions visits.

Guiding their clients during their whole stay, and connecting them to local professionals, BNBKEYS is part of the long-term vision of vacation rental and global tourism: to be home anywhere, while enjoying custom, quality services just like in the traditional hotel industry.

Open Properties (caretaking solution), FÜSO (breakfast delivery), Timenjoy (selection of cultural events) or WeProov (electronic inventory solution) are as many key-partnerships selected by BNBKEYS, for owners and travelers.

It’s important for us [...] to federate young startups, that bring innovative ideas and can create a game-changer offer to BNBKEYS, in quite a competitive industry where margins are relatively low.

We’re convinced unity makes strength. These different innovative collaborations contribute to the local and regional economic drive and strengthen the attractiveness of young companies such as ours, which were not necessarily created in Paris at first.

Conclusion

Added to a complete management offer (listings creation/management, publication, price optimisation…), BNBKEYS made the difference thanks to a simple, yet essential idea: to create an added value for travelers and cities in which they’re available, offering a tailored service that can adapt to the clients’ desires and needs, whether they own vacation rentals or they travel.


MarsEscapes: When Traveling To Mars Becomes Touristic

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Who’s never dreamt of exploring new horizons?

At BookingSync, we’ve always been fascinated by space exploration. What greatest frontier than the infinitely big, infinitely far away? We’ve been focusing our efforts for 6 years now to bring you the future of space travel, and more generally tourism: MarsEscapes, the solution of space shuttle private housing.

Mars: Getting prepared for 2024

Collaborating with great space travel companies such as SpaceY, we’re developing private cabins that will be made available inside space shuttles, for people traveling to Mars starting in 2024.

Once the first colonies will be set up and the first travels made, we’ll launch our first tourist journeys equipped with the MarsEscapes cabins.

The travel, that will last about 30 days, will be entirely designed for travelers to live the journey as being an integral part of their travel.

All the amenities will be made available for everyone to enjoy these few weeks in space.

A high-quality, intimate travel

Our cabins, that we’re developing since 2012, allow space travelers to benefit from the terrestrial standard of living, mixed with the cutting-edge technology necessary to such a trip:

  • Each cabin is decorated and set up with care, and can welcome up to 2 travelers. Standard furniture in each cabin: a 160x200cm / 63”x79” bed, a desk, 2 chairs, a large 50cm/20” private window with a view on space, toilets and a small shower.

  • Cabins come equipped with a terrestrial gravity simulator, helping protect travelers from space sickness.

  • As there’s no gravity in the communal areas of the shuttle, a sports room is at disposal with: treadmills, balls, muscle work appliances to compensate for muscle loss due to weightlessness.

  • In order to protect travelers from the stress of such a trip, yoga & meditation classes and massage sessions are dispensed each day.

  • A complete medical centre (general medicine, surgery etc.) is at disposal for any medical emergency.

2024 may seem far away, but don’t forget we’re already in 2018: 6 more years before Humans can step foot on the Red Planet… And we’ll be there.

We created the MarsEscapes concept because, at BookingSync, our priority is to share, and to stretch our limits: to help you make the most of such a travel and make it accessible to the greatest number.

See you soon on Mars!

5 Tips To Manage Vacation Rental Security Deposits

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Security deposits are paid by your guests, and allow you to protect your properties from any kind of deterioration or additional cleaning fees.

Almost all bookings being made online, you can choose from several options when managing your security deposits.

How can you define the amount of a security deposit? Which option should you choose? We tell you all you need to know in this article.

Security deposit: under which conditions?

No matter how long the stay lasts and the cost per night: you should always require a security deposit!

Then, how can you receive the payment in due form?

As you can imagine, asking for a payment in cash -which cannot be tracked or counterfeit- or by check -facing risks of unfunded accounts and being geographically limited, as creditors and debtors must be domiciled in the same country- aren’t the best options.

The amount of the security deposit isn’t set by law. In practice though, the amount doesn’t exceed 20 to 25% of the rental cost. This amount must be written in the rental contract. Cashing is then made during the check-in inventory, which must be followed by a check-out inventory when the guests leave the property. This allows you to take stock of your rental situation and handle contentions, if there are any.

If no damage or degradation is observed, guests should be refunded within a timely manner. This period often lasts between 7 to 10 days depending on the rental managers and must be written in the rental agreement.

However, if works or excessive refurbishment are needed in the property, provide the related bills and subtract the amount charged to the security deposit.

Handling security deposits: 5 possible solutions

There are 5 common solutions allowing you to handle security deposit payments and refunds:

  • Online credit card payment terminal: simple and effective online payment solution, using the guest’s credit card. Stripe, Paypal, Verifone or Ingenico (in addition to an online payment contract with your bank) can be used for such payments. Fees and commissions vary depending on the solution used.

  • Card imprint: with this solution, travelers are not debited when paying the security deposit. The imprint is valid for 7 days and is renewable. You can also directly make an imprint on the day the guests arrive, which will then be valid during the whole stay. This service is also offered by Stripe, you just need to untick a box when cashing:

  • Bank transfers: in general, no commissions are taken on bank transfers but transfer fees can be applied, depending on banking establishments. A period going from 1 to 3 days can be necessary before to receive the payment. Also, note that adding bank account details, especially internationally, can be limited by some banks.

  • Paying security deposits through vacation rental marketplaces:

Let’s take, for instance, the 5 rental marketplaces with which we’re connected. Here’s how you can manage security deposits:

  • Airbnb: the easiest one! Airbnb keeps a credit card imprint et gives you a 48-hour period after the guests have gone to report any incident and use the deposit.

  • HomeAway: as a BookingSync client connected to HomeAway through the API, the payment gateway which has been set up in your BookingSync account is used for the HomeAway bookings cashing. It’s up to you to then decide on whether you want to cash the deposit during the booking payment -generally, along with the balance- or if you prefer to handle this during the check-in.

  • Booking.com doesn’t handle security deposits. Usually, managers receive the travelers’ credit card details and can manually debit them, or they proceed to a credit card imprint through their payment gateway. They can also choose to handle this during the check-in. We'll soon offer the same payment integration as with HomeAway, it will then be possible de debit both the security deposit and the booking when paying.

  • TripAdvisor cashes the travelers’ security deposit and gives you a 7-day period after they have left to report any incident and use the deposit. If no incident is being reported, TripAdvisor refunds the travelers.

  • misterb&b doesn’t handle security deposits.

Concerning HomeAway, Booking.com (soon), TripAdvisor and misterb&b, if you decide not to cash a deposit at the same time as the rental payment, and not to collect it through these marketplaces, you can ask for the security deposit payment by sending a BookingSync notification. This will send a secured payment link and collect the money through your payment gateway, for example.

Handling security deposits can be tricky, but it’s an essential point to your vacation rentals management and your peace of mind. Take the time to compare the existing solutions to find the one that best suits you, depending on your priorities: time gain, money saving or user-friendliness.