Ten Good Reasons for Booking Direct
Overall, both for guest and owner, it is easier, quicker and cheaper to book direct, however this is often overlooked when using websites of convenience, such as third-party portals. In keeping with this ethos and in support of Clonakilty’s drive for sustainable tourism, Ballynoe House has its’ own dedicated booking engine.
- Live calendar of availability.
- Online acceptance of owner’s Booking Terms & Conditions. No additional third-party portals terms & conditions to agree to.
- Direct communication with the owners by email. No cumbersome third-party portal messaging systems. You can also pick up the phone, call Ballynoe House for a friendly chat, and have all your pre-booking questions answered in as much detail as you require. Get to know your hosts and the amenities ahead of time.
- Personal service and flexibility to ensure your booked accommodation is configured ahead of your arrival. Ballynoe House tailors the accommodation to suit and can advise you which bedroom configuration best meets the needs of your party.
- Should you need to make a change to your booking, it is much easier if no third party is involved.
- There is no need to sign up to third party portals and share more personal information than you need.
- Secure payment by credit card. Ballynoe House also pays any credit card charges, so you book for free.
- By contacting the owners directly, you can also pay by bank transfer (SEPA), if you prefer.
- Special offers are not be available through third-party portals. Ballynoe House’s 10% discount offer for bona fide artists, for example, can only be obtained by contacting us directly.
- More detailed and accurate information about the accommodation and amenities on offer, which cannot always be included in formulaic set-ups on third-party portals.
It is worth considering the main reasons why booking direct is more sustainable
Did You Know:
Some booking portals take up to 15% of the booking price in fees?
This means that less of your money goes to the owners and less money is reinvested in the region you are visiting. The more bookings an owner receives through third-party portals the more likely the cost of staying with them will increase over time to compensate for this “business cost”. Some owners will provide additional help and services for a direct booking, for example making their Wi-Fi free. Ballynoe House can provide addition assistance to direct bookers ahead of their arrival.
If Ballynoe House receives a higher proportion of direct bookings, it will allow us to keep our costs and pricing down. Our hope is to reach a critical mass of bookings and reputation so that clients booking directly with us is the norm and not the exception. It is a more sustainable way for tourism and reflects Clonakilty’s sustainability award. Remember that Ballynoe House’s rates are all-inclusive, so there are no additional charges for booking, electricity, gas, Wi-Fi or other services.
2. When you pay direct, your payments go directly the owners?
Third party portals hold on to your money and only release it to the owners up to a month after your stay has ended. So, for example, if you pay a year in advance through a third-party portal, the owners may not see your payment for 13 or 14 months. This only benefits the owners and shareholders of the booking portal companies. Also, booking direct means you have an opportunity to discuss a different rate for longer-term rental or, for example, if booking out the entire complex at Ballynoe House.
3. Not all third-party portals are fully integrated?
This means that pricing may be artificially high on some non-integrated portals where owners are including the portals fees in the overall price.
4. If guests aren’t satisfied with their experience, the owner has more power to resolve any issues if that guest booked directly?
5. Most third-party portals engage in heavy Search Engine marketing so that they always appear in the top results, which often lures travellers to book through them and generate their high commissions?
It is worth remembering that most hotels will match a best offer price if you contact them directly. They much prefer you paying them at slightly below advertised rate, than paying a significant commission to a third-party portal owner. This is why more and more people are supporting smaller and medium-sized tourism and accommodation businesses by using third-party portals for research purposes and then looking to contact the owners directly where they can. Most business in the tourism sector have a business website, Facebook page, or a Google Maps entry. It only takes a few moments to look below the top-listed ads and you find who and what you are looking for with the owner’s independent site. It is a win-win-win for the guest, the property owner and your holiday destination.
Thank you for choosing to book direct with Ballynoe House.
Mark & Felicity Grace, Business Owners, Ballynoe House
Mark Grace is a Director of the Clonakilty Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber is the advocate of Clonakilty District’s business and tourism community. It is a non-profit body managed by a volunteer Board of Directors and established with the sole aim to promote business in Clonakilty and to promote Clonakilty both as a location for business and as a tourist destination.