Taking payments securely
The safest way to take payments from your guests is to sign up for our Booking Manager service.
Booking Manager is a free tool that lets you view and manage all your enquiries and bookings in one place. Guests have piece of mind from paying you by card or PayPal and you can still accept other payment methods if you wish.
To use Booking Manager, you need a verified business PayPal account. We chose PayPal as the payment provider for Booking Manager as it’s an extremely secure and efficient way of transferring payments online. It’s trusted by thousands of many well known online brands, and used by millions of consumers every single day. We’ve also negotiated the lowest possible PayPal transaction fee that’s available in your country. Once you have a PayPal account linked to Holiday Lettings, Booking Manager can take payments on your behalf and transfer them to you making your transactions with guests fast and secure.
To get started using Booking Manager, watch our video guides or contact us for more information.
Other payment method options
Debit/credit cards by merchant account
This is similar to a retailer allowing you to pay via card in store. If you have a merchant account already set up with your bank you can accept debit/credit cards that way. When paying by credit card, people are protected under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974. Those paying by debit card can raise a chargeback if needed.
If you and your guests both use internet banking you can give them your sort code and account number to enable them to pay you. Depending upon your bank it can take a few hours to a couple of days to appear in your account.
If your guests are paying from an overseas bank account they will need to visit or call their bank to transfer the money to your account. To do this they will need your full name, sort code, account number and bank address as well as your IBAN and SWIFT codes, which should be on your statement or available from your bank.
Make sure your guests know that they will have to cover any bank charges incurred for a foreign transfer.
Make sure a cheque has cleared in your account before sending keys to guests. This can take up to five working days. It's also important to make sure the cheque is only for the amount that you have requested. Scammers may overpay on purpose and ask you to refund the difference before the cheque has cleared. If the cheque is fake, the funds will not clear and you may end up out of pocket. The best course of action is to destroy the cheque and ask that they send you a new cheque with the correct amount. Remember, when paying in a cheque it may appear that your account is in credit before the funds have actually cleared, so be sure to check your bank account to make sure funds have cleared before accepting the booking.
Your guests will also need a payment schedule from you - the easiest place to put this is in your booking contract. This should cover the terms, timelines and available payment methods for the booking deposit, the security/damages deposit and the final payment.
If you do not receive payments on time, contact guests with a reminder of the costs and payment methods accepted. Let them know for how long you are able to hold the booking before you readvertise the dates.
If you're using Booking Manager, this can all be done automatically through the 'settings' section of Booking Manager.