As the vacation home rental world is expanding rapidly; it is becoming more and more of an exhausting, time-consuming process to list a vacation property and to book one. The need to alleviate the hassle and effort has led to creating a more convenient and faster way to book a vacation home rental: instant/automatic booking.
Instant/automatic booking is a great way for homeowners to list their properties directly and for guests to book properties instantly too, just like they book hotel rooms. This method is becoming more common and demanded as it saves both guests and hosts a lot of time. It also eases the booking process as it makes booking a vacation home a breezy process that can be as simple as booking a room at a hotel.
This feature enables guests to receive a confirmation of their booking immediately without the need to wait for a confirmation from the host, which might in many cases extend to 24 hours or more. It also enables guests to move on with their plans as they get the confirmation of the vacation home rental right on the spot, without having to worry about being accepted or not, or whether the price negotiation is going to lead to a good deal or not.
As for hosts, it definitely eases things for them. Most hosts have everything set up in its place and the property is in a rent-ready condition. So it simplifies the booking process and accelerates it.
One of the drawbacks of the instant/ automatic booking process is that it would be hard to apply when the booking window is not a small one. A host can have the property ready for rent easily and rapidly if the guests don’t stay for a long time at the property. But, when they do stay at the property for relatively longer periods, getting everything back clean and in place is going to require more time and effort, which might be hard to accomplish when you have the property instantly booked.
Another drawback of this process is that it does not enable hosts to screen guests before accepting them in their houses, which could have some safety implications. However; a guest verification service has been launched recently to verify would-be guests are of a sound disposition. Guest-verification takes seconds to complete and it connects to national and international crime and fraud databases to assure the guest is eligible for acceptance.
Also, instantly-booked listings commonly lack the existence of, or are limited in supply of essentials such as shampoo, soap, coffee, tea, sugar, salt, pepper, etc…. This drawback means that the guest will need to run to the closest grocery store to buy the essentials needed right away. In this case, the guest may not have been aware of such emerging situation and, therefore, he/she will, most likely, not want to re-rent this property in the future. So, guests’ expectations of instantly-booked listings (especially serviced apartments) should be similar to those of serviced hotels in most cases.