Cancel or modify OTA reservations

Canceling or modifying reservations made through an OTA (Online Travel Agency) requires special attention. When Canceled/modified, the reservation must be updated on both sides, the PMS and the OTA to ensure availability is always synced.

This article shows you how to cancel or modify OTA reservations correctly.

Overview

Some OTAs allow you to cancel the reservation directly on Cloudbeds PMS, which will automatically cancel the reservation on the channel. Other OTAs require you to cancel the reservations through their channel’s extranet.

Channels that support cancelation within Cloudbeds PMS:

  • Hostelworld/Hostelbookers
  • Tripadvisor Instant Booking
  • Coliving.com
  • VRBO
  • Expedia (for Expedia, click here to learn more)  

Meanwhile, reservations must be modified through the channel’s extranet no matter what OTA. Modifying a reservation includes changing the reservation's check-in/check-out date, updating guest's information, room upgrade/downgrade, and changing the reservation status to no-show.

Cancel OTA reservations

From Hostelworld, Tripadvisor, Coliving.com and VRBO

All reservations received through the supported channels listed above can be canceled inside Cloudbeds PMS regardless of the rate plan. The cancelation will be sent to the channel, and the reservation will be updated accordingly.

  1. Access Cloudbeds PMS and search for the reservation(s) that you wish to cancel.
  2. Switch the reservation status from Confirmed to Canceled
  3. A pop-up message will be displayed to specify what action you should take depending on the channel in question
  4. Select how to proceed with the cancelation (whether or not you want to email the guest).

If it's a reservation from channels that support cancelation from within Cloudbeds PMS, the following warning will be displayed.

The pop-up message will only be shown for the reservation received from the above-mentioned channels. If you cancel the reservation and this pop-up does not appear, the channel doesn't support this feature, and you must go to the channel's extranet to cancel the reservation. 

  1. The following warning message will be displayed. Click Yes to cancel the reservation.
  • To un-cancel a booking, you must visit the OTA's extranet. Changing the status from Canceled to Confirmed on Cloudbeds PMS, will not change the reservation status on the OTA.
  • Each OTA has a specific policy on reconfirming the booking once it's canceled, check with the corresponding OTA for each specific case.
From other OTAs
  • Only Hostelworld/Hostelbookers, Airbnb, Tripadvisor Instant Booking, Coliving.com and Vrbo support cancelation from within Cloudbeds PMS.
  • For other OTAs, canceling a reservation inside the Cloudbeds PMS will NOT cancel the reservation on the channel's side.
  • This excludes third-party reservations you entered manually without entering their third-party ID. Those should be canceled directly on Cloudbeds PMS.

Remember to cancel the reservation on both sides: In Cloudbeds PMS and in the Channel Extranet too to make sure your reservations are consistently updated across both platforms.

See the common mistake scenario below as an example:

  • You have only 1 room left for the room type Standard Room
  • A guest named Tom then booked this room on Booking.com
  • Later, Tom called directly to your property to cancel the booking
  • Tom's reservation is canceled on Cloudbeds PMS, the system understands that the availability of this room has reopened. The availability of this room has returned to 1 Standard Room available and this information is sent to all the channels.
  • However, Tom's booking was not actually canceled on Booking.com extranet, which could turn to be an overbooking if someone else books the Standard Room and Tom decides to keep his booking.
Cancelation fee received from an OTA via API

Depending on the cancelation policies that you have set on a particular channel, a guest may face a cancelation fee (for example: canceling within 72 hours of check-in).

For instance, when the cancelation is made on Booking.com, they may send us the updated booking with a Cancelation fee attached to the reservation. This fee will be displayed on the cancelation e-mails and also when printing the Folio and Exporting the reservation to XML/PDF:

  • Currently, only Booking.com and Jalan support sending the cancelation fee via API. This fee is not used for calculation purposes anywhere on the application, this is only for informational purposes.
  • To add the charge, you would need to add to it manually by following the procedure on how to add a charge for cancelation in this article: How to cancel direct reservations on Cloudbeds PMS

Zero cancelation fee

If the reservation is canceled and there is zero (0,00) cancelation fee in the reservation, it could mean two things:  

  1. The reservation was canceled, but per your policy on that channel, no cancelation fee was issued to the guest.
  2. The channel doesn't support sending the cancelation fee via API. You may double-check with your channels to confirm if they support this feature.

Modify OTA reservations

Modify reservations from a distribution channel (applicable for all channels)
  • Any changes to your guest reservation, such as dates, upgrade/downgrade room type, number of guests, guest's info, and changing reservation status to no-show must be done through the OTA's extranet or the guest's portal by your guest.
  • This way, both bookings will be updated on the OTA and Cloudbeds PMS, as long as the channel supports sending modifications to Cloudbeds PMS.

Scenario:

  • The guest booked Room A on the channel. The guest then decides to stay in Room B, instead of modifying the booking directly on the channel account, they contacted the property and the property changed the room assignment on Cloudbeds PMS.
  • Later, the guest makes a modification to their booking on the channel (e.g. adding a breakfast), the channel sends Cloudbeds PMS an update, moving the guest back to his original room, Room A.

Anytime a reservation is modified on the channel, the room assignment will be reverted back to the original room booked.

Solution:

  • Make sure to modify your third-party reservations that come in through Cloudbeds PMS in that channel's extranet or ask the guest to modify their reservation.
  • This way both the channel and Cloudbeds PMS will be updated (only if the channel supports sending modifications to Cloudbeds PMS).
  • The bookings which are marked as In House on Cloudbeds PMS will not be automatically modified if there is a modification from the channel.
  • This is designed to guarantee that the guest who has already checked-in won't be moved to another unit.  
    In this case, the property will receive an email about the modification. Once received, the modification should be handled manually (email also can be found in Email Delivery Log).

For specific reservation modification OTA guides, reach out to the corresponding OTA directly.

Making changes to OTA reservations imported to Cloudbeds PMS manually

There might be reservations which were originally made on an OTA but were imported into Cloudbeds PMS manually for different reasons. For example: the reservation was made prior to setting up Cloudbeds PMS system or the reservation was made prior to connecting the channel to Cloudbeds PMS.

Changes to these reservations should be done on the channel extranet, they will be automatically applied on Cloudbeds PMS, but only if:

  • The reservation's third party ID (order ID) in Cloudbeds PMS matches the booking ID on the channel
  • The change (sending modification, cancelation to Cloudbeds PMS) is supported by the channel
  • Specifically for modifications: It will be applied if the booking is not In-House (guest has not checked-in yet)
Manual Quick Import tool

Manual Quick Import tool allows to import reservations made prior to connecting the channel to Cloudbeds PMS. If you want the changes made to reservation on the channel extranet to be applied to the same booking in Cloudbeds PMS, enter the valid Source Reservation ID

Make sure to select the Source first, from the drop-down menu. This will enable the field for the Source Reservation ID.

Frequently asked questions

Does canceling a reservation in an OTA also cancel it on Cloudbeds PMS? 
  • Some channels (such as Booking.com, Agoda, and Expedia) support sending updates about cancelations to the Cloudbeds channel manager. This allows Cloudbeds PMS to display the booking as Canceled (usually within 5 minutes) inside of our system once it has been changed inside the OTA's extranet.
  • If the channel does not support sending cancelations to Cloudbeds PMS, you must cancel the reservation on the extranet and then mark the reservation as Canceled on Cloudbeds PMS to open the availability.

Check this article to see which channels support sending cancelations to Cloudbeds PMS: Channel Features

Does modifying a reservation in an OTA also modify it in Cloudbeds PMS? 
  • Some channels (such as Booking.com, Agoda, and Expedia) support sending updates to Cloudbeds PMS. This allows Cloudbeds PMS to update the reservation automatically.
  • For the channels which do not support sending modifications to Cloudbeds PMS, you need to modify the reservation on the Extranet and then make the modifications in Cloudbeds PMS manually.

Check the Channel Features to check which channels support sending modifications (look for automatic adjustments) to Cloudbeds PMS.

What happens if a modification is received for a manually imported booking that does not have a (valid) source reservation ID?

In this case, the system will create a duplicate of the booking with the modification applied. For example,

  1. A guest has booked Room A before you connected the channel to Cloudbeds PMS
  2. Then you connected the channel to Cloudbeds PMS and imported the reservation with Room A manually
  3. The guest decides to modify the booking on the extranet to stay in Room B.

Scenario:

  • If you had not entered the valid source reservation ID for this booking in Cloudbeds PMS, then the system will create a duplicate booking for the same guest with Room B booked. The manually imported booking (Room A) will be also left in the  system.
  • The booking  must have a valid source reservation ID for it to be modified automatically.
  • Cloudbeds PMS will send an email to inform you that we couldn't recognize the reservation that was modified, and therefore, created a new reservation.
  • You should then delete the manually imported reservation (Room A) following the steps in the article: How to delete a reservation
What happens if a cancelation is made to a manually imported booking but it has no (valid) source reservation ID?
  • If a cancelation comes through for a mapped room: The system will create a duplicate for the canceled reservation and the original booking will not be modified. We'll also send an email explaining why a new canceled reservation was created (because we couldn't match the cancelation imported from the channel to any existing reservation in the system).
  • If a cancelation comes through for an unmapped room: Nothing will happen. There will be no duplicate for the canceled reservation and the existing reservation will not be modified.
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