What Does “Book Direct” Really Mean?

Golden Key in lock on wooden door

When people are asked what booking direct means the number of people who aren’t really sure is astounding.  Let’s break it down.

All online booking is not the same. Online travel agencies (OTA’s) like Expedia, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Airbnb, and even BedandBreakfast.com just to name a few are making a lot of money off small innkeepers. You will certainly notice that when you search for a bed and breakfast or other lodging that you are bombarded with ads from all of the big OTA’s.  Seems tempting and they all claim to give you the best deal but this is not usually the case.

When you book direct through the Bed and Breakfast’s website or by phone it comes with some major pluses.

  • Booking direct will always give you the best rate guaranteed. Save on average 10% when compared to booking the same room through an OTA.
  • Special offers and discounts are only offered through the website of the Bed and Breakfast.
  • You get the best information through more pictures and detailed descriptions of the accommodations, amenities and the area. OTA’s often have limited pictures and often outdated or incorrect information.
  • There are no hidden fees, costs that are added when booking directly.  At first glance an OTA’s price might seem like it is cheaper but not so after a variety of fees are added.  These might include a cleaning fee, booking fee, early check in fee.
  • Modification or canceling a reservation is easy when booking directly.  You are often dealing with the owner of the bed and breakfast directly.  They make the rules. No corporate red tape to deal with.
  • The best reason to book directly is supporting a local small business and the community.  Most bed and breakfasts are small and run by the owners themselves.  The fees that an OTA will charge a bed and breakfast usually run between 15 and 18%.  OUCH!

So, booking directly through a bed and breakfast’s website is a win, win for both the guest and the innkeeper.  Book Directly Today!

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