Offering flexible booking policies can help increase bookings, but can also lead to more cancellations. To guarantee you get paid—and to spare you the hassle of looking for replacement guests—we’ve developed Risk-Free Reservations. With Risk-Free Reservations, you’ll be guaranteed a payout – even if your guests cancel.Check your program status
What are Risk-Free Reservations?
Our customers love flexibility. Many like having the option to cancel a room for free, and it can often convince them to book with you.
Most guests who book free-cancellation reservations don’t actually end up using it – it’s just nice for them to have the option if they need it. All in all, about 70% complete their stays.
Regardless, we understand that offering this flexibility can lead to more cancellations, which can mean extra hassle and loss of revenue for you.
That's why we've developed Risk-Free Reservations – a new way for you to offer flexible policies with the assurance that you're guaranteed to get paid.
If a guest cancels a booking with this policy, we'll do the extra work of finding you a replacement guest. If we can't find one, we'll fully reimburse you for that booking.
How do Risk-Free Reservations work?
To make your property more appealing to potential bookers, you can offer guests an upgraded (more flexible) cancellation policy.
If a guest books this flexible option but later decides to cancel, we’ll try to find a new guest to replace them. If we can’t find one, we’ll cover the full cost of the reservation ourselves.
So—no matter what happens—you get your money.
Furthermore, the Risk-Free Reservations program is completely free. There aren't any extra charges or commission involved. No need to worry about extra work – we’ll take care of it.
What other criteria are there for Risk-Free Reservations?
- To join the Risk-Free Reservations program, your property needs to be part of Payments by Booking.com, our payment solution for partners. Check out our article on Payments by Booking.com to see if it would be a good fit for your property.
- Risk-Free Reservations only apply to a select group of semi-flexible and non-refundable rooms and rates. We'll show them to guests who are likely to book, which will help increase your conversion.
- We guarantee you’ll get paid. However, the payment may take longer to arrive in your account than normal non-refundable rates.
What happens when a guest cancels/doesn’t cancel?
- If the guest doesn't cancel, you can charge the credit card after the upgraded policy expires.
- If the guest cancels and we find a replacement guest, you can charge the new guest’s credit card as normal.
- If the guest cancels and we can’t find a new guest, we’ll pay you the price of the reservation through your preferred payment method (virtual credit card or bank transfer).
- To give you the best possible chance of welcoming a guest, we’ll use price incentives when looking for a replacement. However, this won’t affect the money you earn, because any discounts will be deducted from our own commission. If we can't find you a new guest, we'll always pay you the full, original amount you set for that room night.
*If you close availability while we’re looking for a replacement guest, Booking.com will no longer be liable to pay for these canceled reservations since there might not be any availability to offer a potential replacement guest.
How do I join the Risk-Free Reservations program?
Currently, Risk-Free Reservations are only available for select regions and partners. If you qualify, you’ll be automatically enrolled once your property receives official communication about the program.
What if I don’t want to join the Risk-Free Reservations program?
We understand that some partners won't think this program is the right fit. If you don't want to offer Risk-Free Reservations, just go to the Property menu on the Extranet, then click Policies. Then scroll down to Risk-Free Reservations and opt out. If you want to rejoin the program in the future, use the same steps to opt back in.
Risk-Free Reservations is designed to benefit both partners and guests. If we detect improper use of the program, we reserve the right to disable Risk-Free Reservations for properties not complying with our terms of service.
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