How Specials Work with OTAs
Specials do not work the same on Airbnb, Vrbo, and Booking.com as they do on your own website or internally. If you list your properties on any of these channels, BrightSide makes it easy to offer discounts. However, since OTAs apply specials differently than your website, or in BrightSide, we recommend creating specials that only apply to OTAs.
Although we recommend that you create unique specials for OTA channels, it is not a hard and fast rule. You may create a special that feeds to both your website and OTAs, and is used internally as well. Having said that, keep in mind the following when creating specials for Airbnb, Vrbo, and Booking.com.
- OTAs consider the conditions you set for a special and automatically apply the discount to every reservation when the conditions are met. In other words, if you have a “10% OFF June Stays” special, with the following two conditions, 1) a three night minimum, and, 2) a June stay date, OTAs automatically apply it to the reservation when those conditions are met.
- If you have a separate special of “15% OFF Summer Stays,” with the condition of a June or July stay date, OTAs will apply this discount instead of the “10% OFF June Stays,” because it provides a larger discount. They always offer the largest discount available and automatically apply it.
- BrightSide also allows you to combine offers. When you set two separate specials to “Allow combination with other specials,” OTAs will apply BOTH discounts, if the reservation meets both sets of conditions. In the examples given above, the guest would receive a 25% discount if they stay at least three nights in June.
- OTAs do not require a promo or discount code, even if you set it up with one. If the conditions are met for a special, they will always offer the largest discount available, automatically. They disregard your promo code and give the guest the discount.
NOTE: One of the reasons we recommend creating unique specials for OTAs, is that OTAs do not filter who gets the discount. For example, if you want to offer a “10% Military Discount,” OTAs have no way of offering it to military personnel only. They give it to anyone, if it is the best discount available at the time the reservation is made. Since this is the case, reserve the military discount, or one like it, for direct bookings on your website or over the phone, utilizing a promo code.