Airbnb has announced that they are retiring the ability for hosts to send emails through Airbnb to guests, effective in early August. This means that Airbnb is going to take away this essential tool for communication even though those were only forwarding email addresses that usually end in “@guest.airbnb.com”. What remains of communication on the platform is basically sending messages through Airbnb and being able to call the guests.
|What you need to know:|
* You will still be able to connect with your guests, either via direct Airbnb messaging or using their phone numbers.
* You will also have other ways to share information with guests. For example, you can still include info like house rules and check-in instructions directly on your listing. This means guests can get these important details without needing you to send documents every time.
* Airbnb is working on supporting attachments in Airbnb messaging. When this is launched, you’ll be able to streamline your communications by attaching documents directly to your messages on Airbnb.
* Airbnb knows some hosts previously used Airbnb guest email feature to send documents to guests to comply with local laws or HOA agreements. If you need to share these types of documents, you can send links inside Airbnb messaging. You can also fill out our attestation form to continue using the guest email feature, but we recommend that you use links in messaging whenever possible.
Can I Send an Email to My Guest Outside of the Airbnb Platform?
According to Airbnb’s Off-Platform Policy, Airbnb may suspend or permanently deactivate a person’s account because of asking guests to call or email in order to discuss a reservation prior to booking.
Airbnb is going to retire the ability for hosts to send emails through Airbnb in mid-August. Meanwhile, you are not allowed to find other ways to facilitate your communication. It is because the following behaviours are prohibited:
- Asking guests for feedback off of Airbnb
- Asking guests for contact information prior to booking
- Asking guests for contact information after booking or misusing contact information provided by Airbnb. However, there are some circumstances under which this is allowed. These exceptions are mentioned by Airbnb, such as if it is legally required, which in many countries it is.
- Asking guests to create a separate account or install a third-party app in order to access their listing
Is it Wise to Switch to Direct Bookings?
Airbnb tends to put barriers in the way of direct bookings by setting new policies and hiding the contact details of your guests. It used to cover their real identity in the form of forwarding an email address that usually ends in “@guest.airbnb.com”. Airbnb is now going to remove the option of sending emails through its platform and using off-platform tools altogether. Using off-platform tools might result in the suspension of your Airbnb account according to the new policies. The reason for all these masks might be the power of data which is inherent in direct bookings or connecting guests with hosts. Direct booking stops OTAs and property listing sites such as Airbnb and Booking.com from running as they used to, and Airbnb is counteracting any effort which may help direct booking endeavours.
How to Build up your Marketing List for Direct Booking
The day you decide to stop using Airbnb with all its constraints you need to accumulate a marketing list and provide the toolbox of direct booking. Zeevou Book‘s unique 5-Step Booking Confirmation Process will help hosts still capture real email addresses, fully automating the collection of guests’ email addresses.
Unlike Airbnb’s approach, Zeevou aims to equip you with real email addresses. To separate hidden email addresses of guests in OTAs websites from real email addresses, Zeevou has embedded some specific aspects in its software. During the processing of bookings that flow into Zeevou, guests are asked to provide you with their real email address. Zeevou also collects consent from guests so that you are able to use their email addresses for marketing purposes. The guests can unsubscribe from the marketing emails anytime they like.
How Can Zeevou Collect Real Email Addresses in the Context of Airbnb Bookings?
Voila! Zeevou will still be able to do that.
We will send a message with a link to guests through the Airbnb messaging API asking them to confirm their booking, as part of which they have to provide their email address, and after that hosts can communicate directly with guests if they please.
But now where should I show my listings to a broader range of potential guests if it is not Airbnb?
What is the Alternative OTA?
Zeevou has developed a commission-free booking platform, Zeevou Direct. It is a completely free OTA where guests and hosts will be able to communicate and arrange bookings without paying commissions. This is a tool provided by the team behind Zeevou to allow hosts to help each other to obtain more direct bookings.
Zeevou: The Catalyst for Direct Booking!
Zeevou is disrupting the vacation rental industry and seeking to bring about The Direct Booking Revolution! Zeevou has a handful of features and functionalities that will help you to not only stop thinking of direct bookings as a far-fetched dream but also be able to realise this dream for your own business. Learn how Zeevou is stimulating direct bookings by clicking here. Interested in knowing more about Zeevou? Request a Free Demo now!