Managing Business Disruptions

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Managing business disruptions: Covid-19 Knowledge Base
This page lists BookingAutomation tools and functions and links to resources helping during exceptional circumstances.

Adjust to changed demand

Block days between bookings

The setting "Block Dates after Check-out" in {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) PROPERTIES > ROOMS > SETUP allow to block days between departure and the next arrival to allow for cleaning.

{{#fas:exclamation-triangle}} This option is only suitable for rooms with a quantity of one, the logic will not work correctly with room types with a quantity greater than one.

Accept requests only instead of confirmed direct bookings

In {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) PROPERTIES > BOOKING RULES you can change your „Booking Type“ to „Request“. This means that guests enquire and you confirm or decline each booking manually.

{{#fas:exclamation-triangle}} This setting will apply only to direct online bookings.

Offer cancellable bookings

If your bookings are normally not cancellable you could add an additional offer with a cancellable price. This help page explains how to set up additional offers.

Offer guests refund protection for non-refundable bookings

f you activate Refund Protect in {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) BOOKING ENGINE >UPSELL ITEMS your guests will be able to buy an optional refund protection which will cover them if they need to cancel a non-refundable booking.

For more information please see here.

Attract last-minute and long-term bookers

If you suffer from a lack of tourist demand consider:

  • removing or reducing minimum days until check-in rules set in your daily prices and rates and same day booking cut off in {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) PROPERTIES > BOOKING RULES to allow last minute bookings.
  • Attracting long-term stays with long-stay discounts.

Make sure guests can book for next year

While cancelling their next trips many guests are already booking ahead even for next year. Open up for sale by adding prices for more than a year ahead by adding prices and increasing the "Max Days in Advance" setting when using rates. If you set "Export data" = 2 years in {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) CHANNEL MANAGER we will send data as far ahead to the channel as they allow.

Update your website, booking page and listings

Update headlines and descriptions on your booking page and OTAs so guests know which measures you take and what you offer at the moment.

{{#fas:lightbulb}} Airbnb,, Expedia, Tripadvisor, VRBO and many other platforms have created special features you can add and programs you can join. Participating in these initiatives can significantly increase bookings.

Offer self check-in

You can set up Auto Action Emails in {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS)) GUEST MANAGEMENT > AUTO ACTIONS to give instructions how guests can retrieve keys or entry codes.

We also integrate with several partners who offer self check-in solutions.

Take advantage of Google Hotel Ads free booking links and lowered limits on bids

BookingAutomation has partnered with Google for an experiment with free booking links.We are happy to announce that Google has now officially launched free booking links as a permanent option.

As official Google Hotel Ads partner BookingAutomation can distribute your direct rates and inventory on Hotel Search by Google.

  • You get a direct connection to Google with the best rate coverage and real time prices

  • Display your hotels’ direct rates and availability on Google Search and Maps

Go to {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) CHANNEL MANAGER > GOOGLE HOTEL ADS and set „Notify“ = Notify for your most economic double room to benefit from Googles free booking links. If you want to go one step further and increase your visibility you can add a commission bid.

Google has lowered the limit on commission bids. If you do not have many OTAs bidding against you you can get bookings for a 4% bid.

Contact previous guests

Use our integration with Mailchimp {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) APPS & INTEGRATIONS > MAILCHIMP to automatically update your mailing list. Alternatively you can download bookings as a .csv file to use in another system.

Automatically adjust prices

If you do not use dynamic pricing via Pricelabs or RoomPriceGenie you can use the yield optimizer in PRICES > YIELD OPTIMIZER to automatically adjust prices based on availability.

Evaluate alternative rental options

In many areas there is still a demand for accommodation which under normal circumstances might not be considered lucrative but can now help to cover costs.

  • Attract guests who need longer term temporary accommodation by extending maximum stays and offering discounts for longer stays.
  • Offer day use with limited service as "homeoffice" for people need a place to work.
  • Offer accommodation to guests who want to isolate themselves.
  • Offer accommodation to people who normally live together but need alternative accommodation at the moment.

Manage cancellations and existing bookings

Incentivize re-bookings with vouchers

If cancellations are inevitable you can issue gift/deposit vouchers which allow guests who cancelled or whom you had to cancel to future dates with a discount. This tutorial explains how to set up gift vouchers.

Keep guests informed

Use Auto Actions to keep guests informed on developments regarding their booking or to assure them about the measures you have taken.

Create reports on cancelled bookings

We have added a new column "Cancel Date" in REPORTS >CUSTOM REPORTS which allows you to create reports on cancelled bookings.

Use Automation to reduce contact

Automated messaging and self-check-in can make processes contact-less. See this page for more information on what you can automate.

Adjust Channel Manager

Close or reduce availability at channels

If you accept direct bookings or requests but do not want to sell all rooms or any rooms at OTAs at the moment you can reduce or close availability at the channels via SETTINGS->CHANNEL MANAGER->CHANNEL INVENTORY. Check on the channels web sites that the inventory is actually closed.

Completely disconnect channels

If you want to close the availability at the channels close the availability in BookingAutomation first. Check at the channels that the rooms are closed. You can then disconnect in the channel.

You find information on how to do this on the channel help pages for example for when you go to {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) CHANNEL MANAGER > BOOKING.COM and then click on HELP in the top right.

{{#fas:exclamation-triangle}} Disconnecting a channel in BookingAutomation first will not close the property/rooms at the channels.

What you can do if you are forced to close

Close your property for new bookings

You can set a "Blackout" in the CALENDAR to close your property for new bookings for a certain period.

For other methods to close a property please see here.

Cancel existing bookings

Direct bookings

Best is to deal with every guest individually. If you can not handle the process individually you can set up an Auto Action which changes the status of the booking to "Cancelled" and sends an Email to the guest. Click here for instructions.

OTA bookings

For most OTAs cancellations have to be made in the OTAs. Check which each OTA what their conditions are right now.

Reduce BookingAutomation fees when you are closed

You can lower the number of rooms and if you have remove sub accounts and disconnect channels. If you use optional extras like integrations, SMS booking notifications, private label booking pages you can deactivate these as well.

If you keep the channels open after disconnecting them you will need to manage your bookings and your availability manually.

Changes in the rate of value added tax

You change the VAT rate in {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) PROPERTIES > BOOKING RULES. Also check the VAT for your upsells in {{#fas:cog}} (SETTINGS) BOOKING ENGINE > UPSELL ITEMS .

VAT can also be changed via the API (JSON propertyContent).

{{#fas:exclamation-triangle}} Changes take effect immediately on all bookings made after the tax rate has been changed.


Our partner Pricelabs provides data on booking trends at

Many OTAs have launched specific programmes and provide help and advice.

Airbnb Corona Virus Resource Center Recovery

[ information regarding the Coronavirus

VRBO/Homeaway Rise and Shine Webinar

VRBO/Homeaway FAQ

VRBO/Homeaway Health and Safety Guidelines

Stripe dispute guideline