Frequently Asked Questions
- What pre-requisites do I need in order to use the standard package?
- You must have a computer with a reliable internet connection, as all bookings are managed via secure internet pages (the Administration Console). Broadband is preferable, but not essential. To ensure that the online availability is always accurate, bookings taken by telephone, fax, email or post must be entered into the Admin Console as soon as they are received. Ideally, the Admin Console should be a full replacement for any paper-based bookings diary. If this is not possible for any reason, then the Admin Console must be treated as a full duplicate of the existing booking mechanism.
- You must provide your own facilities for handling payments. If payments by Credit or Debit card are required, you must have your own Merchant ID and terminal to process such payments. The standard package does not perform online payment transactions. It stores the payment details securely so that only authorised users have access to them. The standard package can be used without taking Credit or Debit card payments. Customers can be advised that their booking is provisional and will not be confirmed until you have received and paid in a cheque.
- You must have an existing website to which links can be added for customers to navigate to the Availability Calendar(s) and Secure Booking page. If you do not already have such a website, you can still use the EseBooking service by taking out the full EseSite package from Esekey. This provides a full website with the EseBooking service built-in. Please email us for more information.
- How does the online booking process work?
You update the booking via the Admin Console from "Deposit Due" to "Deposit Paid". An email is created to inform the customer that the booking is confirmed.
- The customer uses the Availability Calendar to choose an available date to make a booking
- The customer fills in the online Secure Booking Form, with an available date, duration, property, personal details and payment method.
- The request is recorded as a provisional booking and is immediately shown in yellow on the Availability Calendar and is not available for other customers to book.
- You receive an email (and, optionally, a text message) containing the provisional booking details, and you will see a reminder on logging in to the Admin Console.
- You process the payment (pay in a cheque sent by post, or supply the card details via a merchant terminal as a "customer not present" transaction).
- The dates are now shown as a confirmed booking, in red, on the Availability Calendar and are not available to other customers.
- When a Balance becomes due, a reminder appears in the Admin Console, prompting you to process a balance payment.
Optionally, when this is completed, a Final Confirmation email can be sent with additional information such as directions to the property, local shops etc.
- What if I don't want to accept a booking?
You can use the Admin Console to reject a provisional booking. In step 5 of the online booking process, above, instead of changing the booking status from "Deposit Due" to "Deposit Paid", simply change it to "Cancelled". This will have the immediate effect of changing the dates in the Availability Calendar back to green, so that they are available for other customers to book, and can optionally create and send a cancellation email to the customer who placed the original booking. Wording on the website and in the initial booking email indicates that any online booking will remain unconfirmed until an email is sent confirming availability and indicating the owner's acceptance of the booking. This caveat gives the owner the right to accept or reject online bookings at their own discretion.
- What about telephone, fax, email and postal bookings?
The process for taking telephone, fax, email or postal bookings is exactly the same as above, except that in step 1 the owner keys the information supplied by the customer into the New Booking form in the Admin Console.
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