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Is it worth getting a Tourist Board rating?

 
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Mazey



Joined: 08 Dec 2018
Posts: 6
Location: Cornwall

PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2018 12:41 pm    Post subject: Is it worth getting a Tourist Board rating? Reply with quote

We have been letting our cottage through an agent for seven years but they were taken over by one of the big firms in 2017. We now have our own website and are listed on a couple of independent listing sites. Is it worth getting an official star rating from the English Tourist board?
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apexblue



Joined: 10 Sep 2008
Posts: 2177
Location: UK

PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2018 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We were 5 star rated years ago with Visit Wales which resulted in one booking.
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It is better to remain quiet and have one think you are stupid, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt....
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zebedee



Joined: 12 Sep 2014
Posts: 978
Location: yorkshire dales

PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2018 5:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You wont get many bookings from being on the
Visit England site itself, (or Wales) but what you will get is the very well recognised logo that you can attach to all your adverts and include in any advertising text.

It should help you stand out if your competitors are not star rated, and if they are, then it will bring you up to par with them. For people who will book direct from your website, it will make a huge difference to bookings as it offers a standard of assurance.
Its only worth getting if you can achieve 4 or 5 stars, 3 may not make much impression.

We have always been 4 star and get around 50% booking from a search engine search. Not listed on any big listing or commission sites and it is hard work, but works well for us.

Weve had several guests check out we are not a scam property using the VE website, which was down for about 2 years but has now been resurrected.

A lot may depend upon who your target market is.
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kendalcottages



Joined: 27 Nov 2009
Posts: 2475
Location: Kendal, between the Lake District and the Dales

PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

zebedee wrote:
For people who will book direct from your website, it will make a huge difference to bookings as it offers a standard of assurance.


Will it though? There are other ways you can offer that assurance such as embedding reviews from another site...

Just my opinion, but I would seriously question whether it's worth it.
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Kendal Cottages, Kendal, Cumbria - between the Lake District & the Yorkshire Dales
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Cymraes



Joined: 07 Jul 2015
Posts: 401
Location: North Wales

PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the 110 it costs me for Visit Wales registration it is well worth it.

I can use the logo, emphasise that MY star rating is from a Govt agency and it does make a difference for those who care about such things. Certainly the older demographic seem to be reassured by it
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Joanna



Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 913
Location: Chester, North West England & Sidmouth, East Devon

PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We had the same dilemma and eventually tried out AA grading for our Devon cottage last year. We got 4 stars and then I changed all our listing titles to 'Chandler's Cottage 4 star holiday let in Sidmouth'. I added the AA 4 star banner to our photos on Facebook, TA, etc and quoted from the AA inspectors comments on our web site home page.

We didn't get any enquiries via the AA website but our general enquiries did go up and overall bookings were up last year. It might have been a coincidence, we'll never know for sure.

My theory is that 'expert' reviews carry more weight. The AA inspector has seen hundreds of holiday lets so he really does know what he's talking about. We're going to get the other house graded too but may use the Visit Britain scheme for that one.

BTW we went with the AA because, at that time, Visit Britain weren't showing graded properties online so enquirers couldn't verify our grading.
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Jo

Joint owner of Baker's Cottage in Chester & Chandler's Cottage in Sidmouth
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