Dear Airby: Streamlining & the Booking Process

This edition of Dear Airby is based on Clear Communication, one of the 10 Steps found in
Master of Vacation Rentals.


“Dear Airby,

I recently had guest inquiry around doing a ‘site visit’ at my property prior to booking. Of course, the booking apps won’t allow exchange of contact or address info until a booking is made so that aspect of the request had me confused itself. I replied that the prospective guest would need to book first and has 48 hours to cancel per my strict cancellation policy.

Frankly, I did not want to go through the effort and feel as though since I have a 5.0 star average with over 100 reviews at that property – why should I jump through these hoops PLUS I have 30 accurate pics. Luckily I happened to be at lunch with a friend when this was going down (yes, I let my friends know that I self manage and this is my job so I’ll have to interrupt the meal and offer to pay most of the time because dining with me is probably a nightmare). But anyway, he said, “what is it that she wants to know? What is her specific question”?

So I replied to the guest inquiry with my friends advice and also related the difficulty arranging a ‘site visit’ and stressed that this was the first time we had that request and pointed to our stellar reviews. The guest didn’t have actually have any specific questions and booked the next day. Is there another way to handle this situation? Should I have allowed the site visit?

Eager for your reply, “

– Samantha in Spokane

Dear Samantha,

Who is your friend? Eat with him often! Between the two of you, you nailed it!

You reasoned with the guest inquiry and turned the inquiry into a booking. I know that when these complicated situations come up, a normal first reaction is to just say no (in one way or another). In this case you took a measured tone with factual information (like the impractically of timing a site visit with your star rating). Well done!

The bigger lesion here is these “interesting” scenarios come up all the time – so approach the next one and one after that and after that with the same measured manner without hint of confrontation.





Dear Airby: Streamlining & the Booking Process

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