Islay Accommodation – How to Save Money: For the last 19 years I have managed the IslayInfo website and I like to think I was quite successful with it. That wasn’t only due to the many hours I put in but also because there wasn’t a real alternative website showing so many photographs of the island. Back then a picture said more than a thousand words and that is still the case!
From the early years on I started with listing accommodations on my website to connect the visitors of my website with the accommodation providers on the island. There weren’t too many at the time though but more and more folk on Islay started doing Bed and Breakfast and Self Catering as tourism increased. This was mainly kick-started by the popularity of Islay Whisky, the Distilleries and tourism in general.
Big Internet Companies taking over
Over the years much has changed and large internet businesses have taken over much of the Islay accommodation market and act as a “middle man” between the potential visitor and the accommodation provider. This “service” they are providing is of course not free, although some like to think so. It’s a fact that booking with either booking dot com or AirBnB is easier from a visitor point of view, but it’s more expensive too, sometimes a LOT MORE!
How to Save Money on your Islay Accommodation
In these challenging financial times where energy and food prices soar you don’t want to pay too much for your holiday right? So here’s a tip when you want to save on your next Islay Accommodation booking:
Do NOT book a property through AirBnB or Booking dot com but book directly with the accommodation provider. They still charge very fair prices.
I have seen Accommodations on Islay being offered on AirBnB for up to 50% more compared to the prices on the respective accommodation websites when you would book direct. You pay a hefty service fee and cleaning costs on top of the already higher base rate.
Book Direct with the Owners
But how do you find out if your preferred accommodation can be booked direct? It is policy from AirBnB that folk who have a property listed on their website and are contacted by you, a client, cannot mention how to book directly in an email. If AirBnB finds out the accommodation owners would get a penalty, a bad rating or could even be removed altogether. That’s why you should tackle this differently:
The first place you should look for Islay Accommodation should actually be the IslayInfo website. They have a very comprehensive listing of almost every property on the island which can be booked directly. Plenty of choice here. If you do not visit IslayInfo but rather browse on AirBnB or Booking dot com, try to find your preferred property and then search in Google, or on IslayInfo. Find the accommodation website and then contact the owners directly. This is how you can SAVE A LOT of money on your Islay Holiday and use it for something else instead.
Another tip to Save Money
What you can do when you book direct, instead of booking through AirBnB and the likes, is to ask for a discount. Often accommodation providers are willing to give you a discount of 10 or 15% when you book two weeks or more. Booking for a longer period saves them a changeover which is around £80. They are usually quite willing to deduct it from your invoice if you ask for it kindly.
So, by booking direct and for a somewhat longer period you can save quite a bit of money, and have a wonderful longer Holiday on Islay! Enjoy!