Using Technology

All About Hostaway Vacation Rental Software (Review)

All About Hostaway

“The leading all-in-one vacation rental software for property managers”

Launched in 2015, Hostaway provides vacation rental owners and property managers with flexible advanced solutions, but it’s also simple to use. It’s a unique vacation rental software offering deep channel integrations and plenty of support.

Overview

You can find Hostaway all over the world, with offices in Los Angeles, Toronto, Barcelona, Helsinki, Colombo, and Perth. The company’s mission is to “partner with property managers in the growth of their business by providing solutions to achieve their goals.” Hostaway is employee-focused and recruits only the people who are truly passionate about making its customers successful.

Hostaway can be accessed from the dashboard or the mobile app, allowing users to manage their communication, payment, reporting, accounting, sales, and marketing needs from one cohesive location.

The Hostaway creators developed the software with teams in mind so that managers, vacation rental owners, and staff such as cleaning and maintenance crews can easily work together. This PMS makes it easy to manage payments, owner statements, accounting, smart lock integration, marketing, sales, and so much more.

Hostaway prides itself on its ability to produce customized solutions that stay on budget when it comes to larger enterprise customers. Hostaway also offers amazing customer service, which is reflected in its user reviews.

Features

Hostaway’s extensive features fall under eight main categories:

  • Property Management – Hostaway is often promoted as the highest-rated PMS (Property Management System) for vacation rental property managers. Under the Property Management umbrella, Hostaway’s features include an all-in-one PMS and channel manager where users can manage inquiries, recurring guests, distribution channels, owners, and staff from a single location.

Other Property Management features are a reservations manager where users can keep track of their bookings, a performance dashboard that displays relevant information, and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) and Lead Management to bring in more bookings.

Property Management
  • Communication – Hostaway features an industry-leading unified inbox that functions as a versatile communication tool. There are also automated messages, an owner portal where managers can keep owners updated, a guest portal where information can easily be shared with guests, and native support for SMS text messages and WhatsApp.
  • Analytics & Reporting – Users can gain valuable insights into their businesses with Hostaway’s Analytics & Reporting. You’ll find customizable reports for your key performance indicators, occupancy reports, dynamic pricing, and owner statements so managers can keep them in the know. Plus, you can access financial reports with customizable formulas and expense tracking that covers maintenance, cleaning, and more.
  • Automation Tools – Hostaway’s comprehensive collection of automation tools covers just about every aspect of the business. Users can set up automated messages with triggers, automations, and workflows from one place. You can also set up automated review gathering and automated tasks, such as cleaning and maintenance. There are also automated payments that ensure guests are charged the right amount at the right time.
  • Channel Manager – The true core of the platform, Hostaway’s Channel Manager has expanded distribution channels across major OTAs as well as niche sites. It also offers a fast and advanced multi-calendar, multi-unit support to manage hotel-style setups, and cross-listings that cover flexible arrangements for large groups.
  • Marketing – Hostaway offers a large collection of marketing tools to its users, including a booking website with quick setup, a WordPress plugin, coupon management where you can send personalized offers to potential guests, and an advanced website builder.
  • Services – Various services included in the Hostaway software include customizable notifications, the highest-rated mobile app in the industry, open API (Application Programming Interface), and multiple revenue management tools.
  • Operations – Focused on daily operations, these tools cover payment processing, contract e-signatures, guest invoicing, automated payments, task management, and smart lock integration.

Platforms

Users can access Hostaway from the web as well as Android and iPhone/iPad apps.

Users

Hostaway frequently works with freelancers, small business owners, midsize business owners, and large enterprises. It has the capabilities necessary for both small and large businesses.

Training

Training is essential when starting with a new property management system. Hostaway users’ training consists of live online and in-person training, as well as various documents, videos, and webinars.

Support

Hostaway users have plenty of places to turn for support. There’s the email help desk and a 24/7 live customer support representative. Plus, you can look for answers in the online knowledge base, FAQs, and forum. There’s an online chat option and phone support as well.

Awards

Hostaway is a premium partner with multiple well-known channels in the vacation rental industry, including Vrbo, Booking.com, HomeAway, Expedia, and Airbnb. Being a premium partner means that Hostaway is a reliable leading software provider.

In addition, Hostaway was shortlisted at the 2021 Shortyz Awards for the titles of Best Property Management System and Best Channel Manager.

Hostaway also promotes its award-winning customer service on its website.

Pricing

Hostaway offers “customized pricing that scales with your growth.” To access pricing, you’ll need to share some of your information with Hostaway and schedule a demo. At that point, you’ll receive a customized quote. Click here to get pricing.

Although Hostaway doesn’t explain its entire pricing system on its website, it does say that its plans start at $100 per month. It also offers both fixed and commission-based pricing, depending on the particular vacation rental business. According to Hostaway, larger property managers tend to prefer a commission-based payment plan, while smaller companies often opt for a fixed-price model that can be scaled with their growth.

Hostaway has no hidden fees and offers all current and future functionalities to all users. There are no premium features with additional costs to add to your monthly plan.

Something to note about fixed-price subscriptions is that the entire amount will be charged to the property manager or vacation rental owner’s credit card each month. However, enterprise users with payments of more than $5000 can choose to receive invoices instead.

What Makes Hostaway Stand Out?

What Makes Hostaway Stand Out

Hostaway is currently the largest marketplace, with over 100 integrated software partners. This really makes it stand out from the pack since other platforms typically don’t have as many available integrations. Hostaway’s focus on automating and streamlining the vacation rental business, as well as providing scalable solutions for business growth, also sets it apart from other property management systems.

What Do Users Like About Hostaway?

On GetApp, Hostaway earned an average of 4.7 stars from a total of 166 reviews. 95% of user reviews were positive, and 95% said they would recommend Hostaway to others. Compared to similar PMS software options, Hostaway was ranked #4 in value for money, #4 in functionality, and #1 in overall ratings.

Notably, there are very few user complaints in Hostaway’s reviews. In comparison to other property management systems, Hostaway seems to have every possible feature. Many reviews praised Hostaway for constantly making improvements in direct response to user feedback.

The ability to manage multiple channels, enter direct bookings, and manually block dates are all appreciated by users. The unified inbox is also a big perk to using Hostaway, and the numerous automation tools are also well-liked.

Another benefit of Hostaway is that you can add unlimited team members to the software, assigning them tasks and restricting access to certain information based on the particular profile. For instance, you can ensure your cleaning crew can access the calendar and tasks, but can’t look at any financial details.

Onboarding was hailed as “terrific,” and one user noted that while other PMS softwares tend to forget about the smaller businesses, Hostaway treats them just the same as the larger enterprises.

Overall, Hostaway earned quite a bit of praise for its customer service. Nearly every review noted how helpful the customer support staff was and how knowledgeable staff members were.

What Do Users Dislike About Hostaway?

What Do Users Dislike About Hostaway

Hostaway does not offer a free trial or a free plan; it is a subscription-based software.

One small complaint noted that Hostaway currently doesn’t allow for the American date format (month/day/year). Another said there were occasional glitches with updates, but that they were quickly resolved.

There were only three one-star reviews (compared to 133 five-star reviews), and the users who left these reviews explained that they found Hostaway too complicated.

Main Takeaways

  • Hostaway was founded in 2015 and currently has a total of six offices spread throughout the world.
  • This property management system’s features span eight major categories: property management, communication, analytics & reporting, automation tools, channel manager, marketing, services, and operations.
  • Hostaway is a premium partner with Vrbo, Booking.com, HomeAway, Expedia, and Airbnb.
  • Pricing information is provided through a scheduled demo. Prices begin at $100 per month, with no hidden fees or premium features with additional costs.
  • Hostaway stands out from the competition because it has over 100 integrated software partners.
  • Hostaway earned an average of 4.7 stars from a total of 166 reviews. Users praised its customer service and onboarding processes.
  • Hostaway has received very few negative reviews and complaints, but some users were frustrated they couldn’t use the American date format. Others mentioned occasional glitches that came with software updates.
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