Vrbo Guest Messaging Follow
Vrbo Guest Messaging
Setting your Vrbo guest messaging up
When you connected your Vrbo account with Hostaway by API you will be asked to add your Hostaway Proxy email address (Vrbo Inquiry Email) as a secondary email in the 'Email 2 (Optional)' field available in contact profiles added/created in your Vrbo dashboard. However, in Vrbo the account-level emails are required for admin purposes and they are not used for guest messaging. Therefore you will be required to select the contact profile which contains the 'Vrbo inquiry email' in each property's contact information. You can do this by navigating to Property-->Edit Property-->Contact Information within the Vrbo dashboard:
If the 'Vrbo inquiry email' is available in the existing contact profile as the Email 2 (optional) email address, you can select the first option 'Use my member email':
If it is not available in the existing contact profiles, please click on 'Add new contact' to create another profile with the 'Vrbo inquiry email' as the Email 2 (optional) email address and then select the option 'Use my member email'. You can refer to this guide from Vrbo for detailed steps on updating contact information.
The Hostaway Proxy email address (Vrbo Inquiry Email) can be acquired from your Hostaway dashboard under Channel Manager > Vrbo > Configure > Settings:
Understanding your VRBO messaging reservation details page
After you have fully connected any new Vrbo confirmed reservation will come in and contain the guest's direct email address that they provided during the checkout process while placing the Booking in Vrbo:
Any communication sent from Hostaway for this reservation will go to the guest's email address (and will not show up in the guest's VRBO dashboard) up till the point when the guest replies for the first time from the VRBO dashboard.
When the guest replies from the VRBO dashboard, the Hostaway reservation details will be updated and the guest's email address will be changed to the VRBO proxy email. After that, all communication sent from Hostaway will be updated in the VRBO dashboard (and guests will also receive them in his/her direct email). The messages should sync and be available in the host's Vrbo dashboard as well. You can refer to the VRBO Messaging Flow to understand how the messaging system works.
Important to know
- Your Hostaway VRBO proxy email address should be the main contact email address for all messages on the VRBO side under your connected listings.
- The VRBO proxy email system is the best there currently is but can from time to time have missing messages, we advise still to keep your VRBO host app as a backup to answer any message that might not have been sent over correctly. These messages will not be seen in the Hostaway inbox.
- VRBO is working on a new Messaging system and we hope this will be available during 2023. Once available we will implement it in the Hostaway inbox at the earliest possible.
Good to know
- After an inquiry is confirmed by the guest in Vrbo it may take a couple of minutes to update the email addresses.
- For message automation with the trigger event 'At reservation creation,' it is best to delay the automation by 10 minutes before automatically sending the messages out.
- Reservations made before connection with Hostaway will not be able to receive the 'Vrbo Inquiry Email' even if the guest responds via the Vrbo dashboard. For these reservations, you can communicate by the guest's direct email address instead.
Reasons why you don't have the second email address
- You haven't set up the Vrbo inquiry email as a secondary email in the Vrbo dashboard.
- The guest hasn't sent any messages or responses in the Vrbo dashboard or Vrbo App since the booking was confirmed.
- The guest was sent an automated or manual message to their direct email address and they replied in that email thread/inbox itself (which then doesn't sync to the Vrbo Dashboard or App).
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