Our Channel Management feature is extremely powerful and can greatly simplify your channel advertising. Learn how it works by reading our Channel Management overview article. The most powerful part of our Channel Management is the API Integrations we have with certain channel partners like TripAdvisor.
This article provides a step by step walk-through of connecting your OwnerRez to the TripAdvisor API. If you want to learn about the TripAdvisor API, first read our TripAdvisor API overview article which will explain the intended audience, functional abilities, and pros and cons of the TripAdvisor API.
- Connecting and authorizing
- Configuring rules and settings
- Mapping properties
- Activating and deactivating
- iCal calendar URLs
It's important to understand what the TripAdvisor API will and will not do for you. Every API channel integration is different. Make sure to read our TripAdvisor API overview article so that your expectations and assumptions are correct.
The next article you should read is our general Preparing to go API article which explains how to fill out your properties, rates and rules and the tools you can (and should) use to test your account. We cannot stress enough how important it is to test your settings. How well you test will directly relate to how easy the API integration is.
Remember that all channel API Integrations in OwnerRez, such as this TripAdvisor one, are part of the Channel Management "premium" feature. In order to connect and use the API Integrations, the Channel Management premium feature must be added to your account. If you've already connected other API integrations, the premium feature should already be turned on, so you won't need to do it again.
TripAdvisor requires activation and permission from TripAdvisor support. You must get their permission, and they must activate your account for an API connection, before it is possible for you to connect.
Go to the Settings menu and click on the API Integrations option under the Channel section. You'll see a list of the channels that we have API partnerships with. Click on Connect TripAdvisor to get started.
This will take you across to TripAdvisor's website where you will be presented with a message asking you to connect TripAdvisor to OwnerRez.
If you are not logged into TripAdvisor, it will first ask you to do that.
- Make sure that you login to the account that you want to connect to OwnerRez!
- If you need to connect multiple TripAdvisor accounts, you can do that, but make sure you know which account you are working on as you login and connect.
- If you are already logged in and need to switch accounts, do that first before moving on.
A list of permissions and functions will be shown to you. These permissions are needed by OwnerRez to manage your TripAdvisor account on your behalf.
Select the "I agree to the...." checkbox at the bottom and then click Allow. TripAdvisor will spin for a minute and then redirect you back to OwnerRez.
When you get back to OwnerRez, you'll see a "TripAdvisor Channel" page with some settings at the top and some property mappings at the bottom. There is now an authorized connection in place between TripAdvisor and OwnerRez that the system will use to make updates.
This is the dashboard in OwnerRez for your TripAdvisor API integration. This page will show you the status of your properties, the TripAdvisor listings connected to them and when OwnerRez and TripAdvisor last communicated. You will come back to this page on a regular basis to see what's going on and change global settings for your TripAdvisor API integration.
Please note that you are not done at this point! You still need to configure your settings and map your properties, so that OwnerRez is pushing the right information to TripAdvisor.
Even though you are connected and authorized, you still need to configure some settings so that OwnerRez knows what to push to TripAdvisor for your account.
On the TripAdvisor API dashboard page, showing in the picture above, click the Change button at the top. This will load a page full of settings that pertain only to the TripAdvisor API integration.
You'll notice that these rules and settings are similar to what you find on the TripAdvisor website, but only for general things like cancellation policy and house rules. OwnerRez supports all rules and settings that TripAdvisor does - you do not need to access the TripAdvisor website in order to set anything after the API integration is running. However, some of the rules and settings are at the property level in OwnerRez, so in order to set them, you need to find a specific property (under the Properties menu) and make changes there.
In some cases, there are rules and settings in both places - globally on this API dashboard, and on each property as well - because we allow properties to override what is set globally. This makes it possible to set House Rules, for instance, globally and then have specific properties override that with their own House Rules that are different for that property.
The fields shown on this API settings page should be fairly intuitive based on their name and help text. However, if you need help understanding what you're seeing, please read our TripAdvisor API rules and settings article which will guide you through the settings, at both the global and property levels, in more detail.
If you're wondering how you set listing content - photos, amenities, rates - that's taken care of at the property level as well. Whatever you have set on the OwnerRez property will be pushed to TripAdvisor. Our Preparing to go API article covers this and gives you tools you can use to test your content.
You can change these settings at any time, so don't be worried about what to set upfront. If your rules change in the future, come back and change the settings and, right after you hit save, we'll push the updates over to TripAdvisor.
After you are connected to TripAdvisor and have configured basic rules and settings, you still need to map your properties so that OwnerRez knows which OwnerRez property corresponds with which TripAdvisor property.
On the TripAdvisor API dashboard page, click the Change Property Mappings button under the Properties tab.
This will load a page showing all of your OwnerRez properties and some drop-down settings next to each one.
There are two settings for each property:
- What is the corresponding listing on TripAdvisor?
- What do you want to sync with OwnerRez - everything or limited?
The first drop-down will show all of your listings on TripAdvisor. Select the correct listing that goes with that OwnerRez property.
The listing name may be different than the property name on OwnerRez. We show whatever TripAdvisor has on file for your listings.
If there is no listing on TripAdvisor for a particular property, select the "Create New Listing" option at the top. This will tell OwnerRez to create a new listing on the fly when the mapping operation completes.
The second drop-down shows the type of sync options available for the property. There are three options:
- Disabled - this turns off the sync between TripAdvisor and OwnerRez for this property.
- Limited - only rates, rules (a few rules, not all) and availability will sync between TripAdvisor and OwnerRez for this property. Property content, bookings, special offers and other things will not be synced.
- Everything - all property content, rates, rules, availability, quotes, bookings and reviews (and anything else that can be synced) will be synced between TripAdvisor and OwnerRez for this property. This is the recommended option.
When you've configured all your property mappings, click the Save button at the bottom. The system will store your mappings and then begin syncing with TripAdvisor under the covers. If you selected to create a new listing, that will happen as well.
You'll notice some Activate and Deactivate buttons above the property mappings on the TripAdvisor API dashboard.
You'll also notice a Listing Status column showing next to the Sync Status with "active" or "inactive" labels in it.
This column shows you the real-time status of the listing on TripAdvisor's side, and the Activate and Deactivate buttons allow you to change that status. This is a high level on/off toggle for your listing's visibility on the public side of TripAdvisor.
Please note that Sync Status and Listing Status are two separate things. Sync Status says whether OwnerRez and TripAdvisor are communicating with each other for a particular property. Listing Status says whether the listing is showing publicly to TripAdvisor guests.
Either status can be turned on or off independently from each other. The below table shows the combination of statuses that can exist and what happens under the covers.
|Sync Status||Listing Status||What actually happens under the covers...|
|ON||OFF||OwnerRez and TripAdvisor are communicating updates with each other, but the listing is hidden on TripAdvisor|
|OFF||ON||OwnerRez and TripAdvisor are not communicating updates with each other, but the listing can be seen and booked by guests on TripAdvisor. This is a dangerous state and should rarely, if ever, be used.|
|OFF||OFF||OwnerRez and TripAdvisor are not communicating updates with each other, and the listing is hidden on TripAdvisor|
|ON||ON||OwnerRez and TripAdvisor are communicating updates with each other, and the listing can be seen and booked by guests on TripAdvisor. This is the recommended state and what you should expect most of the time|
There is also a Delete Listings button you can use to remove erroneous or old listings that you no longer need. This will only delete the listing in TripAdvisor, not the property from OwnerRez.
When a property is configured to use the TripAdvisor API, you do not need to have any iCal calendar feeds imported or exported between OwnerRez and TripAdvisor. In fact, they'll cause problems, so you should remove any iCal calendar imports from TripAdvisor that you may already have configured in OwnerRez for that property.