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May bookings
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Jenster



Joined: 08 Mar 2016
Posts: 397
Location: Cornwall

PostPosted: Wed May 10, 2017 12:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe its all just random! Glad to hear you filled another week Giraffe Smile
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russellt



Joined: 09 Dec 2014
Posts: 328
Location: Ivybridge, Devon, UK

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 8:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jenster wrote:
but I'm not too hopeful as it's so close now.


Very good thread.

Is there a consensus on the optimum number of days before the booking commences for an owner to move away from the published rate and start offering price reductions?

Or is the decision unique to the season/property/owner's situation, etc?

My gut feeling is that many(probably including myself) are loathe to discount, and so leave it too late to have a realistic chance of attracting a booking. Then at the last minute, we discount, but almost half-heartedly - more in hope than expectation.
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Cymraes



Joined: 07 Jul 2015
Posts: 301
Location: North Wales

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't discount publicly. My opinion is that you just encourage people to hang on until the very last minute to make a booking. I'd rather have the place empty than provide a cheap holiday for some stranger that barely covers my overheads.

Maybe that's what we're seeing now for May - hang on and wait for the owners to blink first?
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russellt



Joined: 09 Dec 2014
Posts: 328
Location: Ivybridge, Devon, UK

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 11:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cymraes wrote:
you just encourage people to hang on until the very last minute



Agree, however........

Some of the large OTAs are making a very good living out of persuading travellers to do exactly that, and doing it on an industrial scale.

Not sure we can buck that trend now, even though, absurdly, we owners are paying the OTAs to create that environment.

But, putting all that big-picture stuff to one side for the moment, my question is a pragmatic one. If you accept that discounting is an inevitability for some owners, how much leadtime should the owner give the market to react to his/her offer? Opinions?
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marsh frog



Joined: 11 May 2011
Posts: 324
Location: England

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 11:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

May was definitely harder to fill this year. Until just over a week ago I still had 3 midweek short breaks left. I discounted them a bit and promoted that fact on Facebook. All 3 remaining breaks were booked in just over 24 hours! Have to say though, I have never had to discount them before
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russellt



Joined: 09 Dec 2014
Posts: 328
Location: Ivybridge, Devon, UK

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's brilliant!

So, maybe 10 days - 20 days prior notice?

I see deals coming on which have maybe 2 or 3 days to go. How realistic is that?
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mmg



Joined: 04 May 2016
Posts: 59
Location: Co Donegal, Ireland

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 1:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had availability for this week, 5 nights, and tweeted on the off chance that someone might want to make use of the lovely weather we are having - no discount offered. At 11am on Monday morning I had a phone call from a previous guest who was at a ferry port on his way here. He checked in at 4pm, paid cash on arrival and leaves tomorrow.

I used to work in travel agencies and on more than one occasion clients arrived in the office with cases packed, looking for deals leaving within 24/48 hours.

It's always worth advertising late availability, no matter how close - someone might just be looking for it.
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russellt



Joined: 09 Dec 2014
Posts: 328
Location: Ivybridge, Devon, UK

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 7:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mmg wrote:
looking for deals leaving within 24/48 hours.



That explains why I saw that bloke skiing in his budgie smugglers! Very Happy
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COYS



Joined: 06 Jun 2015
Posts: 658
Location: Greek Islands

PostPosted: Fri May 12, 2017 8:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the first time I can remember we are/were completely devoid of May bookings.

FB ad, no takers.
MailChimp, no takers.
Twitterings, no takers.
OTA listing, tumbleweed & deafening silence for months.

Wednesday evening, completely out of the blue a request via our own website for a week starting this Monday. A polite email reply, a further follow up call from prospective guest & a few options discussed resulted in my other half & I leaving for home a day earlier to accommodate their flights etc. We often stay overnight in the city centre, & travel light so this isn't a major upheaval.

Happy faces all round.
Mr guest & family were happy with their choice of property, never asked for a 'last minute' discount & paid full price via BACS last night.
For us, one week in May is better than none & saves all our recent preparatory work fading for the weeks unoccupied. An overnight stay in the old quarter is a bonus rather than a bind.

We've never taken a booking so late or so smoothly despite the original dates being incompatible. I wonder what the algorithm for that is?
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Jenster



Joined: 08 Mar 2016
Posts: 397
Location: Cornwall

PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well bizarrely having struggled this May I am already fully booked for May 2018! I was lucky with a two week repeat booking from a couple who stayed this May and the other two were the result of a couple of Facebook ads.

I noticed this pattern last year - that bookings for a particular month the following year started coming in just after that month in the current year, with June and July 2017 filling up in July and Aug 2016, and the summer hols a bit later. I guess people come home from this year's hol and start thinking about next year, or even plan it while they're away. Hope it continues!
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Giraffe



Joined: 26 Jun 2016
Posts: 322
Location: Cornwall, England

PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well done Jenster - brilliant. I have just had half term week booked for May next year from a previous guest.
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