How to synchronise your Travelnest calendar with iCal

Modified on Fri, 24 May 2024 at 12:51 PM

In this guide, you'll learn how to synchronise calendars with Travelnest. If you take direct bookings from your own website or have a separate listing outside of Travelnest (e.g., on Airbnb or Booking.com), these must be connected to your Travelnest calendar. 


Before we explain how to synchronise calendars with Travelnest, let's first get to know some basic details.

 


What is an iCal synchronisation?


iCal synchronisation helps you to keep your calendars aligned across different devices and platforms, making sure that events are displayed uniformly. This is especially useful for property owners who use multiple booking platforms such as Airbnb or Booking.com, as it prevents double bookings. Whenever a booking is made on one platform, all synced calendars will automatically block off those dates. 



Understanding our iCal synchronisation tool 


  • Our calendar sync tool imports external calendars, such as those from Airbnb or Booking.com, into Travelnest. 

  • It's also important to export your Travelnest calendar to any other external calendars you use. To ensure correct synchronisation, both the import and export steps must be completed. 

  • This not only simplifies managing your availability but also reduces the risk of double bookings. Plus, with iCal, your calendars are updated every hour.




How to find your calendar if you haven't published your property with us


If you've just created an account with us and wish to synchronise calendars before publishing your property, you can find your calendar in the 'Pricing and availability' section. Look for the 'Availability' subsection, as shown in the screen below: 


Once you've found your calendar, refer to question number 3 to learn how to sync your Travelnest calendar with external calendars. 




How to Import/Export using the Travelnest calendar


Your Travelnest calendar imports iCal links as well as exports its own link. Remember to complete both steps to a calendar sync for each individual property in your Travelnest account.


1. Log in to your Travelnest account and, from your Home page, click 'Calendar'. If you have multiple properties, you’ll see a drop-down box above the calendar where you can choose the calendar for each specific property.




2. After choosing the property for which you would like to synchronise the calendar, look under the calendar and click the drop-down menu labelled 'Additional calendar features.' 





3.  Once you find the ‘Additional calendar features’ option click 'Export Calendar'. To export your Travelnest calendar to a calendar outside Travelnest (e.g. Booking.com, Airbnb, Google).




4. Click 'Copy link' and paste the link into other outside listings you use (e.g. Airbnb, Booking.com, Google) then 'Continue' and 'Finish'.


 



5. Next, go back to your Travelnest calendar and click 'Import Calendar' to import a calendar from outside Travelnest (e.g. Booking.com, Airbnb, Google). 




6. Under 'Import Calendar,' paste other calendar links (e.g., Airbnb link), name your calendar then click 'Continue,' and then click 'Finish'. 





Travelnest tip: To properly sync your calendars, you must complete both the Import and Export steps. 


We recommend initiating the Export step first. Once you've completed the synchronisation process, you'll notice the status change to 'Awaiting first sync attempt'. This indicates that the synchronisation is in its final stages and your bookings from listings outside of Travelnest should soon be reflected on your calendar. But bear in mind that the first sync might take a couple of hours to finish. 



How to remove any synced calendars


Should you need to remove any synced calendar, it's easy. Simply navigate to 'Additional calendar features' and under import and export calendar options, click on the drop-down icon, then click ‘Remove calendar’ to remove your chosen sync. 




Frequently asked questions


1. How does Travelnest handle blocked dates from an external calendar?


The synchronisation process of the Travelnest iCal primarily focuses on detecting bookings, rather than manually blocked dates. This is because sometimes, other calendars fail to communicate information about these manually blocked dates to us. 


This means that if you block your dates manually on your direct Airbnb listing, this will not affect the Travelnest calendar and those dates will remain open with us. The same scenario applies if you have linked another calendar with Airbnb but not us. 


We strongly recommend manually blocking dates in your Travelnest calendar if you're not using iCal to synchronise your calendars, or if you've manually blocked dates in your direct listings. 



2. Do I need to synchronise calendars if I'm listing my property with Travelnest on all websites?


If you're listing your property on all websites with Travelnest, you don't need to synchronise calendars with them. Our calendar will ensure to keep your Travelnest calendar up to date with all the websites you've chosen to advertise your property with us.


To check the websites you're advertising your property with us, refer to your 'Marketing' or 'Channels' section. There, you'll be able to see the booking sites you've selected with a blue tick next to them.





3. Do I need to synchronise calendars if I'm NOT listing my property with Travelnest on all websites? 


If you decide to list your property on a few websites outside of Travelnest e.g. Airbnb or Booking.com make sure to sync those calendars with Travelnest and deselect the website from your 'Marketing' or 'Channels' section to avoid duplicate listings. 






4. I'm NOT listing my property with Travelnest on TripAdvisor, Vrbo, and Expedia. Where can I find guides to learn how to synchronise my Travelnest calendar with these booking sites?


If you're listing your property outside of Travelnest on those websites, please remember to sync your Travelnest calendar with them and deselect those websites from your 'Marketing' or 'Fees and Channels' section to avoid duplicate listings. 





5. I don't know how to synchronise calendars. Can your customer support do it for me? 


Unfortunately, if you're listing your property outside of Travelnest on platforms such as Airbnb or Booking.com directly, we don't have access to your personal login details to do the synchronisation for you. You must log in to your Airbnb or Booking.com account and follow the steps in this guide to complete the synchronisation process.


If you would like some assistance setting up calendar sync for your property, you can contact our Customer Support team. For information on how to contact us, please see here.




6. What happens if I need to cancel a booking?


As outlined in our Terms and Conditions, we reserve the right to charge you a £50 admin fee, per cancelled booking, where a double booking has arisen as a result of a failure to use iCal or block externally booked or unavailable dates manually. To avoid this fee, connect your calendars with iCal and block any unavailable dates manually.


If you need assistance to cancel a booking, please read our guide here for instructions. 




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