February 6th is National #bookdirect Day!
Today, February 6th, vacation rental managers, homeowners and vacation industry leaders unite as we raise a collective voice to educate the public as to why booking direct is a fantastic option for just about everyone. We are joining forces in a one day #BookDirect campaign where we project a singular message. Our mission is to let all travelers know that there are many great advantages to bypassing those third-party channels/on-line travel agents (OTA’s) such as Booking.com, Expedia, TripAdvisor, HomeAway and Airbnb. We want to encourage guests to book directly with us owners/property managers.We believe that vacation rental homes are the best value for your vacation dollar and there are many benefits of booking directly with an owner and not third party on-line-travel agents.
Did you know you can save money and get even better service by booking directly with an owner or property manager? The biggest reason we recommend booking directly with an owner/property manager is that you will always get the lowest rate. There are no service fees when you book directly from an owner or property manager, and in fact, you can save hundreds by booking directly with the own.
Travellers know Airbnb, VRBO, vacationrentals.com, HomeAway, and TripAdvisor charge fees to consumers. In some cases, these “service” fees are not easily recognizable to a guest who has chosen to book through a third-party.
-HomeAway, VRBO, vacationrentals.com, all charge the guests a booking fee
-TripAdvisor charges both the guest and supplier a booking fee
-Booking.com and Expedia charge the property owner/manager a 15-18 % fee per booking. From a guest standpoint, be aware that this fee is built into the price you pay for your rental. Therefore, booking fees means increased vacation rental costs to you, the guest.
OTA charges are not insignificant, whether these surcharges/guest service fees are added to or “included” in the rental rate. Bottom line is, these fees translate to travellers paying hundreds of dollars more just to use these big OTA websites.
Here are some other reasons to #bookdirect rather than through an OTA:
1. It’s easier — When you go directly to annamariaislandcondorentals.com you cut out the middle man. There’s no hassle of trying to find available dates from the OTA’s array of homes, there’s no pressure to try to book sooner, and you can find exactly the home you want directly from the source. By going straight to us you can cut out any other hassle and start relaxing before your vacation even begins.
2. Communication between the guest and owner/property manager — Traditionally, sites like HomeAway and VRBO and others were a way to connect owners with travelers who wanted to rent. It was an advertising platform — nothing more. Today, on virtually all of the OTA’s sites, all phone numbers, emails, websites and all identifying information is masked and direct communication between owners and guests is impossible. Unfortunately, the OTA system blocks out any and all contact information and all communication goes through the OTA until after the booking is made. You might want to know if there is a grill, a kayak, what check-in time is, or if there is a grocery store close by. When you book direct, you can ask these important questions and get the answers before you commit to a booking.
3. Book direct with knowledgeable owners — Who knows your destination area better than the owner/property manager? Whether you are looking for restaurants, activities, equipment rentals or tours we will always give you the best and most up-to-date advice. We can tell you about all the fabulous things to do and what not to miss during your stay. With the local knowledge the owner or property manager has, we know all the best places to eat or drink, the best things to do and will give you all the information you need to make sure you have the best possible vacation experience. It’s our pleasure to suggest activities in the area that are beyond the obvious as well as special deals only locals know about. Ask away, we owners are always happy to help and offer suggestions.
4. #bookdirect and receive special offers — Different periods throughout the year property managers and owners have special rates and special offers available. With direct communication with us you get the best offers. These are specials that we use to reward our loyal guests.
5. Special discounts to local activities, tours, fishing charters, rental equipment and more! — Another benefit from booking direct with Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals is the partnerships we have with local businesses. We partner with companies in exchange for a nice discount for all our guests. We do not receive a commission from this partnership, we do it strictly to benefit our guests. These are discounts that the OTAs won’t offer you and you won’t find them in local coupon books. Once your direct booking with us has been confirmed , you can take a look on our website at some of the great deals offered.
How do you book direct?
When you are searching for a property and you’ve found a property (or properties) you’re interested in, it’s easy enough to click “Book Now” and complete your reservation. But, savvy travelers are learning to save money and take an extra step. In the property listing, look for a property name or company logo. Then a quick Google location search will help you find the property by matching their name or logo. Once you have that, visit their website, contact the owner/property manager through Facebook, or, even better, pick up the phone and call them.
Next time you are looking to book your dream vacation, skip the OTA’s and go directly to our website — annamariaislandcondorentals.com — #bookdirect and save!
Not only do we offer you a dream vacation, we will make the booking process easy while offering you the best prices with no hidden or additional fees.
Note: Anna Maria Island Condo Rentals offers the above company names and affiliated links as suggestions only. We are not receiving commissions from the above and are listing only to assist our guests. We recommend services that we or close friends and family have experienced.
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