Private House Stays, which will be the only non live partner provider for VisitScotland’s new system, said it anticipates a rise in bookings of as much as 30%.
The web based company, which champions independently run B&Bs, expects the new VisitScotland system to drive a surge in traffic to its site as the schools break up for the summer.
As the only non live provider to partner with VisitScotland, smaller accommodation providers retain flexibility and control of bookings, while benefiting from a huge potential audience in what is tipped to be a ‘staycation summer.’
The New VisitScotland site enables visitors to book accommodation online via a variety of partner providers, most of which offer instant confirmation to a booking request.
Private House Stays, which is exclusively dedicated to independently run outlets, results in confirmation within 24 hours.
The system allows owners to accept requests at their convenience, offering vital flexibility and affordability to hundreds of Scotland’s B&Bs.
Some 60% of accommodation bookings are made online, with this figure expected to increase consistently with the phenomenal rise in the use of mobile devices.
Some 14.5 million tourists view VisitScotland’s website annually, and Private House Stays aims to take an increased slice of the country’s £11 billion tourism market.
The website offers online booking for more than 200 bespoke B&Bs, guest houses and boutique hotels, promising the authentic, local experience which is increasingly important to discerning travellers.
Scotland’s independent B&Bs are renowned for the friendly welcome and personal service, which was shown to be overwhelmingly valued by holidaymakers through a Private House Stays survey this year.
The Private House Stays model appeals to B&B owners who want to be online but, as booking is not live, they still have control and flexibility.
Affordability is also a big factor is attracting small B&Bs. Clients can benefit from an online presence from as little as £48 annually.
Co-founder Cassie Bouverie said: “This is a very exciting time for the Scottish B&B. Research shows holidaymakers increasingly value the friendly, personal touch and local knowledge to be found in privately run accommodation, and anecdotal evidence suggests there is to be a wave of last minute bookings in Scotland both at home and from abroad.
“The buzz is we are looking at a ‘staycation summer’, so it is fantastic timing for our hardworking tourism industry that VisitScotland’s new live system is now in operation. We expect to report at least a 30% rise in bookings as a result.”
Co-founder Archie Bouverie added: “As B&B owners ourselves for more than 15 years, we pride ourselves in understanding the needs and challenges of our clients.
“What is exciting about the new VisitScotland room finder service is that it is available to all accommodation providers across Scotland as long as they use an availability calendar. This will divide up booking requests on a much more level playing field than ever before, creating greater opportunities for all the wonderful, smaller outlets across Scotland.”