Gift certificates from Bed&Breakfast.com - are they worth it? Do you like them? Do you accept them?

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Basil Fawlty

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We recently had a guest who booked saying they had a gift card from Bed and Breakfast.com. When they arrived we were all puzzled to discover that it was a Costco/B&B.com gift card and not only had we never heard of such a thing, we couldn't process it. Maybe we were behind the 8 ball as it were, but it was an uncomfortable moment.
I'd appreciate any feedback on B&B.com website in general and their main gift card program (which we do accept, but I'm not sure I like the idea!) in particular
Thanks,
Green Cat Guest House, Poulsbo WA
 

EmptyNest

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Do a search here and you will find lots of info on these cards. None of it good :-(
 

Alibi Ike

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Surprised you couldn't process it. Did you try calling B&B.com?
We don't take them, it's too much of a commission because everyone wants to use them in season or piled on with other discounts. I've directly lost, as in the guest called, made a rez, was told they couldn't pay with that GC and immediately cancelled, about 3-4 reservations. All of them in season, all with guests who tried negotiating lower rates or add ons. How many have just passed me by I don't know.
 

egoodell

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We don't take B&B.com gift cards. They charge a commission. I would also not want to be associated with Costco as far as my marketing.
RIki
 

muirford

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The ones they sell at Costco require that the guest use bandb.com to make the reservation online, so only B&Bs who have online booking through bandb.com take those. No, they don't make that very clear to the people who buy them - just like all the other restrictions, they print them on the paper that people throw away when they stick the gift card in a cute envelope for giving. And yes, it will be YOUR uncomfortable moment, not anyone at bandb.com, because that is how it works and bandb.com has no incentive to change it.
Before the lecture starts - I'm not telling them how to run their business (bandb.com) but I vote with my feet. I don't think their gift cards are worth the 20% fee (more if you use their online booking), I don't like them, and I don't accept them. I'm running a money-making B&B without them.
 

Alibi Ike

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The ones they sell at Costco require that the guest use bandb.com to make the reservation online, so only B&Bs who have online booking through bandb.com take those. No, they don't make that very clear to the people who buy them - just like all the other restrictions, they print them on the paper that people throw away when they stick the gift card in a cute envelope for giving. And yes, it will be YOUR uncomfortable moment, not anyone at bandb.com, because that is how it works and bandb.com has no incentive to change it.
Before the lecture starts - I'm not telling them how to run their business (bandb.com) but I vote with my feet. I don't think their gift cards are worth the 20% fee (more if you use their online booking), I don't like them, and I don't accept them. I'm running a money-making B&B without them..
Thanks for pointing out the difference with the Costco cards.
 

egoodell

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The ones they sell at Costco require that the guest use bandb.com to make the reservation online, so only B&Bs who have online booking through bandb.com take those. No, they don't make that very clear to the people who buy them - just like all the other restrictions, they print them on the paper that people throw away when they stick the gift card in a cute envelope for giving. And yes, it will be YOUR uncomfortable moment, not anyone at bandb.com, because that is how it works and bandb.com has no incentive to change it.
Before the lecture starts - I'm not telling them how to run their business (bandb.com) but I vote with my feet. I don't think their gift cards are worth the 20% fee (more if you use their online booking), I don't like them, and I don't accept them. I'm running a money-making B&B without them..
Thanks for pointing out the difference with the Costco cards.
.
Thanks Jeannie, I had no clue that was how the Costco ones work. I've seen them here hanging on a wire in the tacky corner at CVS drug store with the University of Virginia stuff. Was not impressed. Just hanging on a wire with nothing to really let you know what they were...
Riki
 

agoodman

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Actually you had to sign up to accept them, I know I received an email asking if I wanted to
Actually I believe there were 2 programs, the regular bandb.com GC which works like all the others, ON SALE AT Costco, and then the "discounted" one which was also on sale at Costco which had different regs
I accept them and I sell them.(few, on both counts) I don't like the comm but that's the cost of business. I still believe they are one of the best bandb marketers out there, period. Each to his own.
There will ALWAYS be customers out there that don't read the "rules", in stores, airlines, hotels, magazines, online purchases, we can't always blame bedandbreakfast.com for these consumer errors. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
 

muirford

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Actually you had to sign up to accept them, I know I received an email asking if I wanted to
Actually I believe there were 2 programs, the regular bandb.com GC which works like all the others, ON SALE AT Costco, and then the "discounted" one which was also on sale at Costco which had different regs
I accept them and I sell them.(few, on both counts) I don't like the comm but that's the cost of business. I still believe they are one of the best bandb marketers out there, period. Each to his own.
There will ALWAYS be customers out there that don't read the "rules", in stores, airlines, hotels, magazines, online purchases, we can't always blame bedandbreakfast.com for these consumer errors. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time .....
agoodman said:
. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
Been there, done that...ad nauseam via email, in person, and on this forum. Maybe you should quit blaming an innkeeper for having a negative opinion of them.
right back at'cha.
 

egoodell

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Actually you had to sign up to accept them, I know I received an email asking if I wanted to
Actually I believe there were 2 programs, the regular bandb.com GC which works like all the others, ON SALE AT Costco, and then the "discounted" one which was also on sale at Costco which had different regs
I accept them and I sell them.(few, on both counts) I don't like the comm but that's the cost of business. I still believe they are one of the best bandb marketers out there, period. Each to his own.
There will ALWAYS be customers out there that don't read the "rules", in stores, airlines, hotels, magazines, online purchases, we can't always blame bedandbreakfast.com for these consumer errors. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time .....
agoodman said:
. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
Been there, done that...ad nauseam via email, in person, and on this forum. Maybe you should quit blaming an innkeeper for having a negative opinion of them.
right back at'cha.
.
Yes, B&B.com have heard all that we are discussing here for YEARS. Many of us have told them these problems. They don't care. They are only in it for the money, which is fine until they try and say that they are here for the innkeepers and the guests.
Just like those nauseating ads on tv for health insurance companies. How they try and say that they are here for the insured. Sure. Until someone gets cancer and needs their bills paid. I have experience with that one for sure.
B&B is probably good for inns that don't have a good location. But many have dropped them with no regrets and no problems filling their rooms. I will probably drop them as well, unless my stat study shows different numbers than I see of very few bookings. My tour website brings more business than they do
RIki
 

Alibi Ike

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Actually you had to sign up to accept them, I know I received an email asking if I wanted to
Actually I believe there were 2 programs, the regular bandb.com GC which works like all the others, ON SALE AT Costco, and then the "discounted" one which was also on sale at Costco which had different regs
I accept them and I sell them.(few, on both counts) I don't like the comm but that's the cost of business. I still believe they are one of the best bandb marketers out there, period. Each to his own.
There will ALWAYS be customers out there that don't read the "rules", in stores, airlines, hotels, magazines, online purchases, we can't always blame bedandbreakfast.com for these consumer errors. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time .....
Back before B&B.com got bought by Home Away there were rather long and heated discussions on here with Eric & John both. Some issues were resolved in that they made it easier for guests to figure out which inns took the GC's vs which ones didn't. It still took reading on the part of the guests.
We have been proactive on here, as a group, and as individuals. And you'll know from being on here back then what the basic reponse was every time we brought up an issue- Eric came around and said we should do what we wanted. He didn't need to change the model, there were thousands more B&B's out there than this little group and they were all praising him to the heavens for the wonders he was creating.
So, a lot of us did what he told us to do- we dropped his programs that cost us too much money. We lowered the level of participation on his website from platinum to silver or bronze. We dropped the GC program.And we avoided the diamond level like the plague.
It had no impact on his selling his very lucrative biz now did it?
Now, the B&B side of things is small potatoes as a subsidiary of a company that could afford Super Bowl airtime. Ask anyone who is not renewing their membership if anyone cares at B&B.com and you will hear 'not a bit'. What most of us have come to realize is that our dollars are simply that- dollars. If I dropped my membership tomorrow would the loss of that $300 impact them in the least? Nope. If 10 of us dropped out? Not a whit. It would take thousands dropping out before anyone noticed.
We have no leverage. So, we try to tell folks our experience because, lo and behold, she asked. She may be in a location where the GC's are like printing money. It's not the case in a lot of places. She may decide to give them a try, I think most of us did.
So, because she asked, how well do you do taking them? 10% of your business? 20% 50%? What kind of skin do you have in it?
 

gillumhouse

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Actually you had to sign up to accept them, I know I received an email asking if I wanted to
Actually I believe there were 2 programs, the regular bandb.com GC which works like all the others, ON SALE AT Costco, and then the "discounted" one which was also on sale at Costco which had different regs
I accept them and I sell them.(few, on both counts) I don't like the comm but that's the cost of business. I still believe they are one of the best bandb marketers out there, period. Each to his own.
There will ALWAYS be customers out there that don't read the "rules", in stores, airlines, hotels, magazines, online purchases, we can't always blame bedandbreakfast.com for these consumer errors. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time .....
agoodman said:
. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
Been there, done that...ad nauseam via email, in person, and on this forum. Maybe you should quit blaming an innkeeper for having a negative opinion of them.
right back at'cha.
.
Yes, B&B.com have heard all that we are discussing here for YEARS. Many of us have told them these problems. They don't care. They are only in it for the money, which is fine until they try and say that they are here for the innkeepers and the guests.
Just like those nauseating ads on tv for health insurance companies. How they try and say that they are here for the insured. Sure. Until someone gets cancer and needs their bills paid. I have experience with that one for sure.
B&B is probably good for inns that don't have a good location. But many have dropped them with no regrets and no problems filling their rooms. I will probably drop them as well, unless my stat study shows different numbers than I see of very few bookings. My tour website brings more business than they do
RIki
.
B&B is probably good for inns that don't have a good location.
Actually they are worse - In my not very humble opinion - for inns that do not have a good location. It is hard enough to try to make a go of it and have to see that much of your hard work leave. We price to what we have to - for our location, our expenses, etc - and then to take the hit from those cards? Volume does not make up for it - profit margins are not that great to start with. people already expect to get a B & B in an off the beaten path location dirt cheap, no matter what your amenities are.
 

agoodman

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Actually you had to sign up to accept them, I know I received an email asking if I wanted to
Actually I believe there were 2 programs, the regular bandb.com GC which works like all the others, ON SALE AT Costco, and then the "discounted" one which was also on sale at Costco which had different regs
I accept them and I sell them.(few, on both counts) I don't like the comm but that's the cost of business. I still believe they are one of the best bandb marketers out there, period. Each to his own.
There will ALWAYS be customers out there that don't read the "rules", in stores, airlines, hotels, magazines, online purchases, we can't always blame bedandbreakfast.com for these consumer errors. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time .....
agoodman said:
. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
Been there, done that...ad nauseam via email, in person, and on this forum. Maybe you should quit blaming an innkeeper for having a negative opinion of them.
right back at'cha.
.
muirford said:
agoodman said:
. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
Been there, done that...ad nauseam via email, in person, and on this forum. Maybe you should quit blaming an innkeeper for having a negative opinion of them.
right back at'cha.
Hey no need to get nasty this was not directed at anyone personally (unless anyone took it as such), if you have done it then fine, I never blamed an Innkeeper for having a negative attitude I just said we need to look at the CUSTOMER
 

agoodman

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As I have mentioned several times they are a VERY small part of my business however I know how strong their "feed" is to other sites and search engines, I have also said I think their comm fees are horrendous and that their fees should be based on number of rooms, so again this was not against anyone personally
 

muirford

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Actually you had to sign up to accept them, I know I received an email asking if I wanted to
Actually I believe there were 2 programs, the regular bandb.com GC which works like all the others, ON SALE AT Costco, and then the "discounted" one which was also on sale at Costco which had different regs
I accept them and I sell them.(few, on both counts) I don't like the comm but that's the cost of business. I still believe they are one of the best bandb marketers out there, period. Each to his own.
There will ALWAYS be customers out there that don't read the "rules", in stores, airlines, hotels, magazines, online purchases, we can't always blame bedandbreakfast.com for these consumer errors. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time .....
agoodman said:
. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
Been there, done that...ad nauseam via email, in person, and on this forum. Maybe you should quit blaming an innkeeper for having a negative opinion of them.
right back at'cha.
.
muirford said:
agoodman said:
. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
Been there, done that...ad nauseam via email, in person, and on this forum. Maybe you should quit blaming an innkeeper for having a negative opinion of them.
right back at'cha.
Hey no need to get nasty this was not directed at anyone personally (unless anyone took it as such), if you have done it then fine, I never blamed an Innkeeper for having a negative attitude I just said we need to look at the CUSTOMER
.
agoodman said:
muirford said:
agoodman said:
. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
Been there, done that...ad nauseam via email, in person, and on this forum. Maybe you should quit blaming an innkeeper for having a negative opinion of them.
right back at'cha.
Hey no need to get nasty this was not directed at anyone personally (unless anyone took it as such), if you have done it then fine, I never blamed an Innkeeper for having a negative attitude I just said we need to look at the CUSTOMER
I did take it personally. That quote, specifically. My response was no more nasty than that quote. If you don't want nasty things to be said by others, don't say them yourself.
 

agoodman

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If my reply used your quote included in my reply, then it was directed at you, if not then it was not, and it did not unless you chose to take it as such
 

muirford

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If my reply used your quote included in my reply, then it was directed at you, if not then it was not, and it did not unless you chose to take it as such.
agoodman said:
If my reply used your quote included in my reply, then it was directed at you, if not then it was not, and it did not unless you chose to take it as such
I stand by my post.
 

egoodell

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If my reply used your quote included in my reply, then it was directed at you, if not then it was not, and it did not unless you chose to take it as such.
agoodman said:
If my reply used your quote included in my reply, then it was directed at you, if not then it was not, and it did not unless you chose to take it as such
I stand by my post.
.
muirford said:
agoodman said:
If my reply used your quote included in my reply, then it was directed at you, if not then it was not, and it did not unless you chose to take it as such
I stand by my post.
She was not being nasty. This has been hashed over and over already if you do a search on the forum. BandB is not concerned with the customer. We are. And they don't listen to us so we don't care for their methods. And we don't deal with their gift cards.
Riki
 

Copperhead

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Actually you had to sign up to accept them, I know I received an email asking if I wanted to
Actually I believe there were 2 programs, the regular bandb.com GC which works like all the others, ON SALE AT Costco, and then the "discounted" one which was also on sale at Costco which had different regs
I accept them and I sell them.(few, on both counts) I don't like the comm but that's the cost of business. I still believe they are one of the best bandb marketers out there, period. Each to his own.
There will ALWAYS be customers out there that don't read the "rules", in stores, airlines, hotels, magazines, online purchases, we can't always blame bedandbreakfast.com for these consumer errors. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time .....
agoodman said:
There will ALWAYS be customers out there that don't read the "rules", in stores, airlines, hotels, magazines, online purchases, we can't always blame bedandbreakfast.com for these consumer errors. Be proactive, contact bedandbreakfast.com and make "suggestions" as to how they can help us, but quit
blaming this on them all the time ....
Ahem, pardon me but I have done so via phone, email and on this forum. On the phone they claimed they have never had a complaint. - Right, and the moon is made of cheese! If the rules were placed in BOLD there would be far fewer in the hands of the consumer. We know there will always be those that do not read, but B&B.com should be upfront with the rules. This would make for a happy customer.
 

Samster

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You couldn't process it because it's not like a gift card debit card that are sold for restaurants and your silly guest didn't read the fine print. Your problem? I think not. No need to be uncomfortable or embarrassed because it was the guest who was at fault here for not knowing the rules of the game.
If you don't take the cards, you don't take them. End of story....
Even those VISA gift cards are a pain in the patoot.
 
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