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I had a family from Moscow stay with us for a month last year...we've become 'friends' and keep in contact via our facebook page...she then told me that she's having a terrible time as no one through the HomeAway site is getting her enquiries...I today had through facebook another Russian lady that wants to book for next year asking if I have got her message and no I haven't and no record of them on Homeaway either...so what is going on ...is Russia blocked?
I have brought this up with London as soon as I heard from the original guest she was having problems...but was told eventually by CS not a lot anyone can do really!!
The Russian market is a good one for us all as there is no economic situation there & the well to do folk from Moscow like to get away for quite lengthy periods!
I am living in Russia and have been a devoted fan of HomeAway for some years now. I like its clear design and wide search options - I could always find the exact match of what I was looking for. This year was my 4th year in row to trust the choice of our family's summer rental in HomeAway. I was a registered traveller with a solid history and only pleasant experiences before. So, I started my search and picked a few good options (about 4-6, as I usually do) and sent out the inquiry through the site. A few weeks passed and I was dissapointed to have received no answers from any of the owners whatsoever. I thought, well, bad choice, rude owners, just a coincidence. And then picked a couple of new houses and repeated the process - silence again. I need to say, that I did recieve a confirmation e-mail from HomeAway on every inquiry, so I new it was working at their end. But there was obviously something wrong.
I registred a complaint at HomeAway customer service - they came back saying they were sorry for the temporary problems and offered to contact the property owners for me, so I sent them the property numbers and they never came back, neither did any of the property owners again.
Meanwhile, I complained to a friend of mine, who I'd met via renting a property from her with the help of HomeAway. We tried to test the conntection ourselves and I registered an inquiry though the site to her. She did not recieve it! And then she called them up and had a long and rather heated discussion. She only managed to get that I must have been blocked by their security system, as I have made too many inquiries at once. That was a ridiculous answer - first of all, how many inquiries are too many? where is it stated? why did not I get a warning? Many questions and no explanations.
Nothing to do, I thought it would be easier to just start from the scratch again, knowing the rules. So, I re-registered with HomeAway with a different e-mail address and even another IP address at another country, as I was away from Russia when I did that. I picked up just one property and sent an inquiry. No difference - no replies, complete silence. I really liked that house, so I just gave up and phoned the owner. She said she did not receive anything from me, but was happy to send me the booking form on the e-mail address I gave her. And within a few days I got a lovely property booked for a month all right.
Conculsions I made from all this? I still use the HomeAway site, as they ARE the best so far - the best choice, the best search etc. So, I find a property with their help, get an owner's phone number and call him/her up myself. All the rest is made outside the site frames. The only problem I see - there are some properties on the site, which do not have pictures and respecitively, they do not show owners contact detials - these owners are lost forever for me. Another conclusion? I keep an open eye for other rental sites to beat HomeAways - as soon as I see one - I will be more than happy to switch. As I am no loyal user of HomeAways any longer.
Dear Maria Yanovskaya
As an owner and manager of 18 properties in the Cadiz Conil de la Frontera part of Spain I used to get inquiries from Russia and bookings however for the last year or so no more inquiries from Russia which is a shame.
I was under the impression that Homeaway promote themselves more frequently in certain countries. It would be good to know alternative ways to promote our properties to holidaymakers in Russia.
I hope you have a good holiday.
We'll . I say come on Home Away . Promote us in Russia and put through enquiries or wer'e all go somewhere else, it's seems a lucrative trade and if it is, we don't want to miss out. Do we have the same problem if they enquire through Owners Direct anyone ? Also we have a fair number of Japanese visitors in the UK but I hav'nt come across any enquiries or is it's not their thing?
The Japanese like to book with agencies when it comes to travel. I had experiance in Paris where I was hoping to tap into the Japanese market but had nothing from them. Only later did I find out that agencies form a big part of Japanese tourists excursions to the west. Also sites would have to be traslasted into Japanese too.
Japanese people genaraly do not speak English, Italian, French, Spanish etc. They only speak Japanese. So don't expect any travellers from Japan unless we get Homeaway translated into Japanese. Which I don't really see happening.
Yes Jenny Wren that is exactly my findings...the Russians that travel speak perfect English.
The Japanese that travel seem to go en masse in groups which we are not geared up for...certainly here in Normandy when we see Japanese Tourists they are by the coachload and very very rarely as a couple or a small family group.