Last Minute Cancellations at Your Vacation Home

February 23, 2013


Sometimes, the best laid plans go astray. Dealing with cancellations, especially last-minute ones, can be frustrating and create financial problems for San Diego vacation home owners. It may not be easy to fill your suddenly vacant nights with new guests. This is why it is very important to have a clear cancellation policy in place before you accept bookings. If you haven’t gotten that far just yet, do it now, and make it visible, both on your websites, and in e-mail correspondence. Make sure that you get an acknowledgement from your guests that they have read and understood your cancellation policy. This can be done with a checkbox on the booking form, or a short e-mail reply.


When drafting a cancellation policy, keep it simple and leave no room for misunderstandings. If you have a small-sized operation, appeal to your guests’ capacity for compassion by mentioning that last-minute cancellations affect your business significantly. Choose a reasonable notice period for cancellations without penalty, such as 30 or 60 days. You may opt to charge a reservation deposit which is then forfeited, should the guest cancel within a number of days before arrival. This should be coordinated within the legal constraints of your rental contract. Alternatively, you may choose to impose an independent cancellation fee. However you decide to construct your San Diego vacation home cancellation policy, be friendly, firm, and reasonable.

About Greg

Greg is the owner of Pacific Coast Vacation Properties, a high end vacation rental management company located in San Diego, CA. He also owns a full service real estate brokerage company that helps owners buy vacation rental and commercial property. In his spare time, Greg volunteers for Habitat for Humanity and other charitable groups in San Diego.

View all posts by Greg

One Response to “Last Minute Cancellations at Your Vacation Home”

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