VRS107 – Payment Options, Online Courses and Blabbing with Heather Bayer

We’ve booked accommodation at vacation rentals several times this year and each one has had a different method of payment.

From a wire transfer that cost us an additional $80 + the travelling time to drive to the bank and back (70km round trip), PayPal (great system), online with credit card (even better) to the latest one we are booking in Germany for next year which we haven’t figured out yet, there’s a bunch of options that owners can choose.

But which will impact guests to the point they don’t book at all, or definitely won’t do so a second time?

In this episode, I share my experiences of being a traveler – wanting a simple process to book my vacation rental – and how some payment methods drove me almost to the point of cancellation.

One of the things I do when on vacation is catch up on all the online courses I’ve bought over the past months and it’s been an eye opener this year. I’ve been binge-buying from Udemy when they have courses on sale, so was interested to read a blog post from graphic designer Evelina Za that calls out course creators for a number of infractions.

Since Mike and I will be launching our new resource site next month that includes a range of mini-courses, Evelina’s take on it was interesting. She says:

“The dawn of quality online courses is gone. We’re approaching the midday when the market for online courses will be littered with courses?—?quality or not. And I can tell you?—?more and more low-quality courses are currently being launched which means many more are yet to come.”

With so many new entrants into the industry – notably those who have apparently made a fortune in Airbnb over a very short period – marketing their training, I’ve shared what I think and what you should look for in a vacation rental online course.

Finally, for all those who have asked us when we’ll be blabbing again, I talk about what we have planned for the New Year.

Here are the links to sites I mention:


Evelina Za on Online Education

Screenflow on a Mac (my favorite Udemy course)

Ralph Moorhouse

Heather: As someone who deals with payments from all over the world for our properties in France, a few comments:

Until recently we have used PayPal – france for the euros or other currencies – it has worked fine, although have an guide is sometimes needed to get past the 1st french page to the one in english. We now use Braintree – much better and they don’t periodically block you account like PayPal can

We have only ever accepted a direct deposit to our french bank [for the second part of rent] – otherwse we will not do this – no wires no cashiers checks

We do not take cash on arrival – been asked but refused

Security deposits also taken via PayPal in currency of guest – avoid charges when you refund within the 60 day allowed window – actualy for us a couple of days after guest leaves and place cleaned.

On booking in europe, it does seem that wire transfer is still popular. We booked a place in Amsterdam last year and it was quite a performance getting a response from various apartments – amazing but the one we chose took payapal. Anyway we did find a nice [OK] place in good location and at reasonable price – nice people but couldnt leave a good review since ” coffee, toilet paper, tissues, shampoo, hand soap’ all missing – ok you can go out any buy but good to have basic when you arrived – blamed it on cleaner!! So set your sights low and be surprised if good unless you stay with us, then you get all you need and more 😉

Bob Garner

Heather congratulations on your podcasts, I am an avid listener – perfect for dog walking. Based in London and Italy all our Uk customers pay of course online direct, not by bank transfer in the traditional sense – that would be crazy. For the rest there is Paypal.

michael hog


very useful article for vacation rental . you should go there and taking enjoy a vacation home rental

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