[Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

Online Community Manager in
Galashiels, United Kingdom
Online Community Manager
1,040 Views

Jenny_0-1662981125343.png

 

Hi everyone,

 

Deciding how far in advance to open your calendar is no easy task. A booking could fall on a date you didn't know you wouldn't be available on, prices might need adjusting as seasons, events and circumstances change, or you might have a more in-depth strategy to maximise bookings. 

 

There is a myriad of reasons that could lead you to manage your calendar in different ways, and we'd love to hear more about how you approach this!

 

So tell us, how long do you usually open your calendar for? 

 

Tell us more about your answer and why that is in the comments below 💡

 

Thanks, 

 

Jenny

 

 


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22 Replies

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

in
Santa Margherita Ligure, Italy
Level 10

mainly because I get guests asking to book a year in avance ,and they say the bookings are not opened ,so I just correct prices and open them , if there is a request its best to open in advance . ciaoo ciaoo

Bridget

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

Level 10

@Jenny I hope it can have 15 months option. Now it is only have 3/6/9/12 months and then "all future booking". I have some return guests want to booking little more than one year. For example, this June, a guest want to booking for next Sep. I am OK, but the date not open. Then I let them wait. Until end of Aug, I found out I can manually open the blocked days. Then I opened it manually and they booked. But for the real good return guests, I sometimes give them some discount by modify the booking. I couldn't modify the reservation after they booked until the start of Sep. Make the things more confusing. 

So if there is 15 months option, it will be better. Also if we can send the special offer to the return guests, that's be good. Now we can't. We have to explain to the guest how it works using booking modification.

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

in
Greenville, SC
Level 10

I’ve always done 1 year in advance. In Maui, that is the minimum, because many guests start planning their Maui vacations around that time.

 

I’ve sometimes wished I had it set shorter, because of what you mentioned about prices, @Jenny  Inflation is running rampant currently. My guests who booked a year ago are getting a fantastic rate! Great for them…for me, not so much, although from everything I’m reading here, I am grateful to have any bookings at all.

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

in
London, United Kingdom
Level 10

@Jenny 

 

When I still hosted short term guests, I had my window set at six months in advance. Now that I focus on long term stays, it's 12 months. It's very rare for a guest to book more than a few months in advance, but for longer stays, they might need a longer booking window to encompass the whole stay.

 

One has to just keep on top of pricing, adjusting it as necessary, and also blocking dates on the calendar nor adding rule sets RE no check in on certain dates, as and when other commitments come up.

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

Online Community Manager in
Galashiels, United Kingdom
Online Community Manager

It's great that you're able to offer a longer booking window @Huma0 , potential guests will find that helpful!

How often do you adjust your pricing and block out dates?  Do you have a schedule or is it just sort of "as and when" required?

 

Jenny


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Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

in
London, United Kingdom
Level 10

@Jenny 

 

I don't adjust prices very often anymore as it's less seasonal with long term guests. I don't see much point raising the price for peak holiday times for example, as demand neither increases nor decreases for those, but I certainly did when I hosted short stays. 

 

I adjust prices according to the 'bigger picture' if you like and demand, but I wouldn't go too low even in slow times as there's no point in me hosting if it doesn't cover my expenses and time.

 

There's also no schedule for blocking out dates. Some dates in between long stays will automatically be blocked due to my minimum stay and, in the past, I would then go in and reduce the minimum stay for those particular nights, but I only do this now if it's a significant gap. For example, my minimum stay is 28 nights, so if there are 27 nights in between two stays, those would get blocked and that is too long for the room to be empty! Also, I block the calendar when I get direct bookings.

 

If I am going to be travelling, I don't normally need to block the date as I don't mind long term guests being here while I am away, but I do use rule sets to ensure there are no check ins on those dates as I don't have a co-host or someone else to manage it. I'd rather be here when a new guest arrives. By using the rule sets for this, I don't lose out on long bookings where the guest is arriving before I go away.

 

 

 

 

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

in
Gros Islet, Saint Lucia
Level 10

@Jenny,

 

For our apartments which are long-term only, the booking window is 90 days, because guests rarely book more than a few weeks in advance due to the long-term cancellation policy. 

 

The cancellation policy at our guest house is Firm and non-refundable, and the booking window is usually 6 months.  Unlike Booking, Airbnb doesn't allow hosts to set a certain amount of dates as only non-refundable (BDC allows 30 days to be actively blocked during a 12 month period).  As a result, I am considering to block the dates of Christmas week in December through mid-January on ABB.  Last minute replacement bookings are not easy to get on a small island destination.  Especially during that time period, I don't want the hassle of being contacted by CS asking me or they unilaterally decide to breach my chosen cancellation policy just because a guest hadn't appropriately prepared to protect their travel investment against unplanned events and doesn't want to accept the consequences of that risk.

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

Online Community Manager in
Galashiels, United Kingdom
Online Community Manager

It's good that you're protecting yourself, @Debra300. Have you put this process in place after a challenging experience in the past, or are you just keen to be one step ahead of anything like that happening?

Jenny


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Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

in
Gros Islet, Saint Lucia
Level 10

@Jenny,

 

@Jenny 

 

I inquired about the lack of non-refundable only dates when the new cancellation policy was introduced last year.  It is a feature that is available on Booking and Expedia, and we have utilized it during peak periods, Carnival, December/January holiday period, and when there are special events (e.g., concerts, cricket, festivals, etc.).

 

Last year a guest booked a discounted non-refundable two night stay to arrive on Christmas day.  We had gotten host rust after having been closed for 16 months, and this booking caught me off guard, because I hadn't yet updated the minimum stay requirement to 7 nights for the holiday period, or blocked off Christmas day for arrivals.  Two days before arrival the guest claimed that they had caught COVID the week before, and wanted to cancel and get a full refund.  Thankfully, ABB sided with us on refusing the refund, because the guest should have contacted us when they were diagnosed (but we had to wait a day before this decision was made).  The guest's late notification prevented an opportunity to book another reservation for that Christmas to New Year week. 

 

Guests are relying upon ABB to make decisions in their favor when it contradicts the host's chosen cancellation policy.  As a result, the quality of the booking in terms of intent to fulfill the contract has drastically degraded.   In fact, this past year we had seven ABB bookings at the guesthouse between August 2021 and March 2022, and three of them cancelled last minute (one didn't request a refund).  We don't need the games that some guests are playing nowadays to work ABB's policies into giving them unwarranted refunds.  On other platforms, we make the final decision if we're willing to make an exception to our cancellation policy.

 

 

 

 

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

in
Placencia, Belize
Level 10

2 years, used to be 3 years but that wasn't doing us any favors.

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

Online Community Manager in
Galashiels, United Kingdom
Online Community Manager

What makes 2 years better than 3 years, @Fred13?

Jenny


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Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

in
Placencia, Belize
Level 10

   We markedly improve every 2 years (by $30k usd) with new additions and increasing the price to pay for those improvements comes across well when the guests see great corresponding new changes and additions.In example a new solar system or a water purification system.

    Every other year we focus on smaller things that influences our personal lives; in example the one being this year is to keep the guests busier and give them less reason to calls us during their entire stays. Why we added high-quality Paddle Boards, a new whisper-quiet generator that automatically comes on during cloudy days if need be (we are on solar power), ice freezer, etc. (Small expenditures totaling $15k usd).

  

 

 

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

Level 10

@Fred13

How can you do 2 years advance. I couldn't see such options. Thanks!

Re: [Poll] How far in advance do you open your calendar?

in
Redmond, WA
Level 1

We only do 6 months in advance because we don't know how much longer we will be staying in the area.  I don't want to have to cancel bookings if we decide to sell the house due to the never ending property tax increases.   There is a likely chance that a developer would buy the property and the Airbnb would no longer exist.

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