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AirBnB API - Instant Booking Options

Lydia B
Nov 24, 2019 3:51 PM
Joined May, 2019 159 posts

1) With the new AirBnB API integration I have a "Channel Rules" question. Currently I do not allow an ABB guest to instant book. On the new OR page to "Edit Airbnb Channel" the 2nd field has to do with "Instant Booking." There is no choice for "inquiries only." What do I do if I do not want any instant bookings?

2) Also, one of the reasons I turned off instant bookings on ABB is because of the delay in passing bookings from one OTA to OR to another OTA. I had an incident where I received instant bookings from both ABB and VRBO and it caused a problem because they came in within minutes of each other. I know that's highly unusual, but I want to avoid the possibility. Does the API with ABB change that? Eliminate that as a potential problem?

Ken T
Nov 25, 2019 10:21 AM
OR Team Member Joined Aug, 2019 750 posts

1. At the moment, you can't: Airbnb's API does not support request-to-book, only instant booking. If request-to-book is a hard requirement, you cannot use the Airbnb API.

2. It is impossible to *absolutely prevent* double-bookings, as it is not possible to update all calendars literally instantly. There will always be a window of time in which the calendars are not fully updated no matter what method you are using, and it would be possible for a double-booking to slide in.

However, the API connections are much faster than the iCal calendar syncs, and so they make that window of time much smaller. If you are using the APIs with both VRBO and Airbnb, it is still not *technically* impossible to get a double-booking, but as a practical matter, it would be so wildly unlikely that it can be generally ignored.

All things considered, we recommend usage of the APIs wherever possible, as they minimize the likelihood of a double-booking.

Rich S
Nov 25, 2019 11:38 AM
Joined Dec, 2018 299 posts

What happens in OR if there is a double booking? I imagine it's not something that could possibly be overlooked... will emails be sent to owner? Is it visible from an OR screen without having to run a report?

Lydia B
Nov 26, 2019 1:28 PM
Joined May, 2019 159 posts

OK. So understanding "inquiry" is not an option with the ABB API, would be interested to hear from other ABB users about what booking option they've picked with the OR API and if they've had long enough to understand the results.

I'm trying to avoid a double booking between ABB & VRBO. Had one earlier this year and it was not fun to clean up.

I am currently using IB on VRBO. I'm wondering if anyone has picked the OR option for "only guests with verified government-issued ID and who have traveled on AirBnB, are recommended by other hosts, and have no negative reviews...." Seems like that would eliminate most instant bookings. Wondering if that would also make me appear as accepting IB in AirBnB's eyes, which would help my placement in results.

BlueMtnCabins
Nov 26, 2019 4:54 PM
Joined Jun, 2016 993 posts

Lydia B said:

I'm wondering if anyone has picked the OR option for "only guests with verified government-issued ID and who have traveled on AirBnB, are recommended by other hosts, and have no negative reviews...." Seems like that would eliminate most instant bookings. Wondering if that would also make me appear as accepting IB in AirBnB's eyes, which would help my placement in results.

This is actually Airbnb's setting, not OR's. I have that setting in Airbnb. It does not eliminate instant bookings... only ones who can instant book are people that have prior good reviews etc.