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I hesitate to ask this question because it is probably obvious but, I'm missing it. I had a recent guest inquiry from someone who was very proud of the fact that they had a Homeaway profile. She asked me if I had a chance to check it out. In the inquiry I found a link by her name that said something like "profile"...I can't remember exactly. I was able to look at her profile through the inquiry link however, I can't seem to find a place to check if someone has a profile. She had a photo of herself and her family and a short paragraph about themselves and their love of travel etc...
It was also interesting that she felt she was more qualified and reliable because she did have a profile. I have to admit that after seeing their photo and reading about them...I did too.
Does anyone know how to view someone's profile etc? Sorry if this is obvious and I'm just missing it
Just spoke to our Traveler Product Marketing Manager - you can only access a traveler's profile via their inquiry. So right now there isn't a way to search travelers, but we're considering it for the future!
I hope you expand the guest profile feature. The ability to view a guest's profile and anything they write is a one component to getting to know the guest and feeling more at ease with them as renters. When they write about their travel preferences and give a little bit of insight into who they are helps owners get a feel for the person or group interested in renting their home. And, a photo and location is good too.
It's good to hear that Homeaway is looking into enhancing this feature. Thanks.
Yow, am I to understand that under consideration is to allow us to view profiles of travelers other than those submitting inquiries?
right now there isn't a way to search travelers, but we're considering it for the future!
Sure, that could be interesting from a voyeuristic perspective, but to expose the type of personal information some of those profiles contain to people who have no need for it sounds like it would raise serious privacy issues, and should make travelers hesitant to include any personal information. That, in turn, would make profiles less useful.
If a traveler chooses to prepare a profile, I do consider it a positive factor, and it helps my vetting process. With the link in an inquiry to view the profile, it gives me access to all profiles for which I have legitimate need. I would oppose any requirement that a traveler complete a profile as a condition of submitting an inquiry. There are a few people who still seek to minimize the dissemination of their personal information, and I would hope that we can welcome them as travelers along with those who overshare.
I don't think I would need to ever search through random profiles in general. A profile should only be available to an owner if the guest inquires on their property. That way the potential guest has the expectation that their profile will be read. Also, profiles don't have to contain sensitive personal information. Maybe the location, photo, a descriptive paragraph about themselves, and possibly how long they have been a Homeaway trusted traveler.
I'm with mudstump. I wouldn't see any reason to see a profile unless they were inquering. I'd love to see their other guest reviews, so I can get a sense about them, as well as their location, and how long as a HA trusted traveler. In the absence of a guest review system, this is about as close as we can get to "knowing" our customer.
"you can only access a traveler's profile via their inquiry"
do you mean the VERY basic info the traveler includes with his inquiry (name, phone, email address)? I just looked at recent inquiries and don't see any means to access their profile...except the very basic info they provide in their inquiry...(and sometimes no phone is included)
I think if someone is seriously looking for a vacation rental on a large network like HomeAway or VRBO (or others) that they should be required to have a profile as part of the registration process. Again, it only need contain things like name, contact info, city they are from, ages and basic travel needs or habits. It also should link to every review they have left. That would contribute to a more fair give-and-take system between "buyer" and "seller" as it works well on sites like AirBnB or even eBay. That way the traveler too has an investment and accountability to be responsible.
However, I agree that their profile should only be accessible to those owners or managers receiving an inquiry from them.
More importantly I think there should be a way for owners/property managers to review and provide feedback on customers/guests. Does that already exist? I haven't been able to find it. I recently had an inquiry that I wasn't sure about, they had a profile but there was very little information there, very little. The had provided feedback on a couple of properties but there was no way of knowing where the properites were and no link to the properties, we should be able to click on a link to view the property and perhaps the owner's feedback on the guest and how things went. We all want this to be a happy place for owners and guests, one that both can confidently recommend to others.
I like to get name, phone, hometown, email, number & approximate ages of guests, purpose of visit, and whether they have ever been to my town before.
What is inappropriate? Well, the Fair Housing Act prevents landlords from discriminating on the basis of national origin, race, color, sex, familial status, and disability, so you really shouldn't ask about those . Your state may have further restrictions, e.g. age, gender identiy, or sexual orientation. While many vacation rentals are not covered under the FHA rules, it's important to understand them.
Here's an article on the topic: