Booking Rewards System: What Are the Benefits for Hosts?

booking rewards

By  The Hospitable Team

With 100 million monthly active users, Booking.com is one of the world’s leading OTA platforms, so listing your vacation rental property on this channel gives you a chance to reach its huge audience. The platform also has the Genius Loyalty Program, from which guests and property owners can benefit.

Booking.com rewards frequent travelers who sign up for the program with exclusive discounts, free extras, and additional services. Property owners who join the Genius Program can benefit from extra visibility, increased occupancy, and guaranteed revenue.

Let’s look at the Booking.com Rewards system to find out how it works for guests and how hosts can use it to improve their ranking on the platform and generate more bookings.

You may also want to check out our blog article to learn more about Booking.com’s pros and cons for hosts and determine whether it’s a good distribution channel for you.

Booking Rewards and Benefits for Loyal Guests

Genius is a loyalty program where regular or loyal users enjoy special benefits. Guests who join the program are granted exclusive discounts and other Booking.com travel rewards based on how frequently they use the platform to book a place to stay. The more they book, the more travel rewards they unlock.

The Booking.com Rewards program is based on a tier system where guests can ascend through various genius levels depending on how frequently they book stays on the platform. Each level comes with new rewards and bigger discounts.

  • Guests can sign up for the program by creating a free Booking.com account, which immediately gives them access to the 10% genius discount—Level 1.
  • Travelers who complete 5 or more bookings in 2 years reach Level 2 and can enjoy 10-15% discounts on stays along with free extras.
  • Travelers who complete 15 bookings in 2 years reach Level 3 and are granted 10-20% discounts on stays, free extras, and additional services.

Each booking counts towards the traveler’s progress in the program. Once guests have unlocked a level, they’ll enjoy the benefits for life, and discounts and rewards are automatically applied to a guest’s account when they book the Genius properties.

How Does the Program Work for Hosts?

All Booking rewards are available for guests only on the properties participating in the Genius Program by offering different discounts and varying value-adds. Thus, the program encourages more travelers to book Genius partners. Participating properties can benefit from increased visibility on the platform, which will lead to more bookings and revenue.

Joining the Booking.com Genius Program can be a good way to boost your exposure, attract more guests, and build a thriving STR business. You’ll be able to grow your business faster if you use vacation rental software like Hospitable to automate routine management tasks and run everything on autopilot.

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If you join the program, your properties will be highlighted with the blue Genius logo in search results and on your property page. Search filters also allow travelers to see only properties that participate in the Genius program. You’ll also benefit from ranking boosts and marketing initiatives exclusive to program members. 

According to Booking.com, partners who join Genius receive 70% more search result views from travelers. They also increase their booking rate by 45% and revenue by 40%.

Hosts who participate in the Booking.com Genius Program also get access to a premium customer base. Genius members are travelers with higher value who spend more money when they book. They also typically book their stays further in advance and love to write reviews to share their experiences with others.

How do you join booking.com rewards and make the most of the program?

If you list your vacation rental on Booking.com, you can join Genius if your property meets three eligibility criteria:

  • It must be open and bookable
  • It has received at least 3 guest reviews
  • Your review score must be at least 7.5/10. com may make an exception if the average review score in your area is lower than 7.5 and your property’s review score is above that average.

If you meet these criteria, you can sign up to Genius for free—click on the Opportunities tab in the Extranet and then select Genius partner program. You can block out Genius discounts for up to 30 days per year and opt-out at any time via the Extranet.

You should use the program smartly to boost your listing’s appeal and attract more guests who love to travel. Here are some of the best practices.

  • Ensure your vacation rental property is clean and comfortable and has all the necessary amenities and supplies for a pleasant stay to ensure a great guest experience.
  • Update your listing’s photos and description to highlight the best features and ensure that your availability is up to date.
  • Price your vacation rental competitively and use a dynamic pricing strategy with flexible nightly rates that adapt to the season’s demand.
  • Maintain effective communication with your Booking.com guests via messages to make them feel welcome and cared for. Then, they will be more likely to leave you positive reviews.

When you get many bookings, communication with guests can be very time-consuming. Although Booking.com offers messaging tools that can help reduce your workload, unfortunately, these tools have some limitations. However, you can easily ensure personalized communication with your guests using vacation rental software like Hospitable, which has an AI-powered messaging system.

Have conversations with your guests even when you sleep.

We will detect questions and answer on your behalf; send fully custom messages triggered by events, and much more!

What Else Can You Do to Maximize Your Opportunities?

Joining Booking.com Rewards is an excellent opportunity for hosts to improve their listings’ visibility on the platform and convert more guests. If you are new to Booking.com, Genius can be particularly useful for helping you perform better in search rankings and start taking bookings on the platform quickly.

However, once you get enough positive reviews and establish a good reputation, you may find that losing an extra 10% of your revenue per booking outweighs the visibility boost. All hosts who list their properties on OTAs pay hefty commission fees, and giving an extra 10% in addition to the Booking.com host fee means you are losing a minimum of 25% off your nightly rate.

Guests think they get discounts not from the Genius property owners but from the third-party platform, so their loyalty is to Booking.com. So, if you want to secure repeat guests and higher profits, you should have a direct booking website that you can use to foster good relationships with your guests and build customer loyalty.

The good news is that Hospitable users can take advantage of our dedicated service, Hospitable Direct, and easily create a fully functional vacation rental website with a direct booking engine. With Hospitable, you can start to welcome direct bookings and become more independent from OTAs without having to become a coding expert or spend hours on setup. Moreover, your direct booking website will get listed on Google Vacation Rentals.

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