You can’t avoid OTAs if you are a hotelier and would like to maximize the potential of your property, and as you probably figured some of them do not provide you with the real email of the guest. This is not a big deal anymore, Booking.com changed to masked emails in 2015.
However, a lot of hoteliers are still confused about whether these emails function properly and whether they can target customers with personalized offers if the customer has a masked email.
What is a masked email and why is it masked?
A masked email is a combination of the Guest’s first and last name, ending with @guest.booking.com.
It is masked for a variety of reasons, the first one being security. Masked emails are safer, they do not allow third-party misconduct or spam and viruses to reach the guest. Booking.com stores all guest communication and hotels can access it in very serious (legal) situations, but only if it is really unavoidable.
Can GuestJoy communicate with these email addresses?
Yes! While they do not allow you to see the guest’s real email, they are totally functioning. You will be able to contact your guests for up to 2 months via their masked email.
Why is it important that you use masked emails?
OTA’s are a significant part of your reservations, some hotels get up to 60% of their guests from them. Given that we can reach your guests via masked emails there is no need to exclude Booking.com or Expedia guests from the upselling and rating of your property.
Of course, we would rather have guests book directly, but it is not always possible. Make sure you reach the OTA customers too and target them with specific offers and services to increase your revenue. Furthermore, with a discount code in your post-stay email, you can encourage them to return to your hotel and have them book directly on your website or join your loyalty programme!
What to do if you are a small property and you ONLY have Booking.com emails?
For properties that have fewer than 20-30 rooms, we have an app in BookingSuite with a 30-day free trial. Given that we are fully integrated with BookingSuite the setup is quick and easy and you can launch yourself within 30 minutes.
Don’t worry, if you get stuck we provide free online support in 10 different languages.
What to do when you would like to have the real email address of a guest?
The only thing you can do here is to ask the guest either personally at the reception, or via an email (remember, booking.com ones are valid for 2 months) to provide you with their real email. You can ask them to sign up for your newsletter or offer a direct booking discount. If they do not consent personally to this, unfortunately, there is nothing much you can do about it.