Today I made the move to sync my Airbnb, VRBO and TripAdvisor calendars in hopes of avoiding double bookings. Maintaining three individual calendars was proving difficult.
The import and export worked well, and everything was aligned nicely, but then I realized the calendars don't sync with new reservations. What is the point of merging calendars if they don't sync automatically? Data points for the different platforms?
Having to go into the platform and manually sync isn't any easier than maintaing three calendars. Am I missing something?
Hi @Lori No you aren't missing anything. Unfortuneately the don't all sync/update at same time. Some can be minutes and others hours, so you would either have to manually sync, which if you aren't quick enough it could end up with a double booking or what I have had to resort to is on another site I made it so guests have to "request to book". Not ideal at all. I left Airbnb as an instant book as you can't cancel without being "punished". Even doing it that way, by the time the "other" sites guest accepts and pays for their booking there could've been an instant book on Airbnb! I dont know any other way around it.
Thanks Donna & Tim, glad to know I wasn't missing a step, but disappointed that there isn't an auto sync. I sent "feedback" to Airbnb, maybe it will help? I had really hoped that this would solve the occasional double booking problem, but it just seems to be a way to help.
Also, VRBO does penalize you when you initiate a cancellation, you lose ranking, but they don't charge you like Airbnb. I recently had to call them and make sure I didn't lose ranking after cancelling a couple of reservations due to a natural disaster in the area.
@Lori @Donna And Tim the way syncing works: each site has to "pull" reservation data from the other sites. So when you get a booking on Airbnb, Airbnb has no way to force other sites to immediately update, and they have no way to know they need to. And vice versa. Most sites seem to sync about once per hour, and have a manual option to "sync now." I've been booking three listings on multiple platforms using ical synchronization for 18 months and have never had a double-booking. If it happens I'll deal with it, but I don't worry about it.