Touchstay Review: Features, Cost, & Alternative

An effective guest communication tool is the secret to any scalable property management business in the vacation rental industry. These platforms quickly improve your customer service, streamline daily tasks, and give your vacation rentals the boost they need to secure bookings. The only downside to all of this is that finding the right one is oftentimes a process of its own—which is why we’ve prepared a TouchStay review just for you!

We’ll be going over TouchStay’s features, usability, integrations, and customer service, as well as an alternative for rental managers that would like to integrate with more property management systems.

RueBaRue is a great alternative to TouchStay that lets you create digital guidebooks and automated messages within minutes by integrating with your PMS. Book a demo personalized to your rentals to see the platform in action.

What is TouchStay?

TouchStay is a guest communication software that allows property managers to create vacation rental guidebooks. The way it works is simple: information is stored online while you create your guidebook and is then transformed into an attractive format for guests to access directly from their own devices.

A typical vacation rental welcome book on TouchStay includes:

How much is TouchStay?

TouchStay costs around $2 to $6 per property each month, depending on the number of units you are managing. For a specific quote, rental managers must contact the company directly.

You can try TouchStay with a 14-day trial that’s available on their website.

Preview of touch stay's pricing

Preview of TouchStay’s pricing / Credit: TouchStay

TouchStay review

If you’re looking for vacation rental tools, Hostfully vs TouchStay vs RueBaRue is a good place to start. For now, we’ll get going with TouchStay.

Features

TouchStay’s main features include:

  1. Vacation rental guidebooks: TouchStay makes it easy to add videos and photographs to your guidebooks for a more visual impact. These customizable welcome books can be accessed offline but can also be printed or saved as PDFs. For property managers with multilingual guests, content can be translated into various languages.
  1. Email and SMS scheduler: For maximum efficiency and better reviews, you can automate emails and text messages to send welcome books to guests before their arrival. The process is straightforward and cuts down the time needed to communicate back and forth with visitors during their trip. It also helps you maintain the same level of quality when managing multiple properties at once.

Usability

Vacation rental guests enjoy TouchStay’s guidebooks because they’re straightforward and don’t require any separate apps to be downloaded. Visitors can find everything they need to know about their stay in just one place and property managers can rest easy knowing that their clients are satisfied.

However, because TouchStay has very few direct integrations with property management software, its competitors might stand out more in terms of functionality.

Preview of guest using guidebook

Credit: Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

Integrations

TouchStay integrates with OwnerRez, a booking management engine that also integrates with online travel agencies like Airbnb, Booking.com, and Vrbo.

This partnership means that TouchStay users can import the name, address, and main picture of their properties to their digital guest welcome book. They can also set up an automated message with their guidebook link for confirmed bookings.

It’s also worth mentioning that you can incorporate TripAdvisor reviews into your local tips.

Customer service

Since TouchStay doesn’t have public reviews on platforms like Capterra or Trustpilot, it’s difficult to develop an overall opinion on the subject. Instead, the company has shared some positive reviews on their website that might be helpful to property managers.

The TouchStay alternative that property managers love: RueBaRue

An alternative guest communication tool to consider for your vacation rental business is RueBaRue. This platform integrates with more property management systems and helps you save time and cut costs without sacrificing your company’s professionalism. Let’s take a look at some of RueBaRue’s main features and how you can benefit from them.

Preview of RueBaRue's homepage

Preview of RueBaRue’s homepage

RueBaRue’s pricing can be easily viewed online

Requesting a custom quote, not to mention receiving a response, is an inconvenience that takes up valuable time and energy. With RueBaRue, property managers can quickly find out how much they’ll be paying with a pricing calculator.

There are three different plans available to help you understand what’s included in your subscription:

  1. Starter: Starts at $9.99 a month and includes digital guidebooks, local area guides, and SMS automation.
  2. Professional: Starts at $79.90 a month and includes 10 properties. This plan gives you access to digital guidebooks, local area guides, SMS automation, Extend Guest Stays, guest SMS messaging, a dedicated SMS number, alerts, five-star reviews & surveys, a guest dashboard, and iPhone/Android apps for property managers.
  3. Enterprise: To learn more about seasonal and volume discounts, contact RueBaRue’s sales team.

RueBaRue integrates with your PMS

Using a guest communication tool that integrates with property management systems (PMS) is crucial because it allows you to import data from your main software in just a few seconds.

Instead of having to manually input information for your guidebook, you can reuse the content you’ve already prepared in the past. This expedites the entire process, which can be a real lifesaver for short-term rental managers that are overseeing 10+ properties.

While TouchStay only integrates with OwnerRez, RueBaRue directly integrates with 12 different vacation rental software companies:

All of these partnerships allow you to import key listing information and bookings on the spot so you can cut down on manual tasks immediately.

Preview of RueBaRue's integration partners

RueBaRue’s integration partners

RueBaRue allows you to increase your income by offering guests the chance to extend their stays

Another feature that distinguishes RueBaRue from other guest communication tools or digital guidebook apps is the Extend Guest Stays option.

Extend Guest Stays analyzes gaps in your calendar and offers a discounted extended stay to your guests. Filling up these spaces is an effortless way of generating more income, increasing your vacation rental occupancy , and reducing cleaning fees.

Send automated emails and text messages

Managing even a few properties can lead to a whirlwind of questions from guests preparing to check-in or asking how to use certain amenities within the property. This is the result of underprepared guest communication, which can be easily solved with RueBaRue’s message automation feature and house manual.

You can use our vacation rental email templates to simplify things even further—all you have to do is customize the messages to fit the guest and schedule them! Not only does this technology increase your efficiency, but it also makes your business look extremely professional.

Preview of RueBaRue's message scheduler

Preview of RueBaRue’s message scheduler

Send your digital welcome book via link in email/SMS

Make sure that guests receive your digital welcome book by sending over a link via email or SMS directly from RueBaRue. Guests just need to click on the link on their own device and they’ll be redirected to the property guide.

RueBaRue’s guest messaging feature provides rental property managers with a dedicated number and inbox to effortlessly communicate with clients. You can save responses to frequently asked questions, look through your archived messages, and even forward calls to your personal cellphone.

Effortlessly create local area guides

There are not many things that are better than going on vacation and already having a list of recommended attractions and restaurants to visit during your stay. Instead of having your guests Google places for hours, surprise them with a customized area guide of all the essential spots in town and improve your guest experience.

RueBaRue’s search algorithm automatically uploads recommendations from the internet, which you can then edit however you want. Add titles, addresses, URLs, photos, videos, and PDFs to the area guide and watch those vacation rental reviews pour in.

Preview of RueBaRue's area guide

Example of RueBaRue’s local area guide

Read about it online

Online reviews matter regardless of the industry you’re working in. While they shouldn’t be the only source of security that you rely on before investing in a product, they definitely give you honest angles on just about anything.

RueBaRue’s reviews on Capterra confirm what we’ve already mentioned above: the platform is easy to use and the end result is transformative for both property managers and guests. Pam S. claims that “the ease of getting detailed information to our guests and providing them with a simple way to communicate with us has been a game-changer.”

She adds, “We’ve uploaded videos, detailed instructions, pictures, maps, and more! The guestbooks are easy to read on any device and making changes is a breeze. We've used other guestbooks before and this one is a keeper.”

Final words

Now that you know enough about TouchStay and RueBaRue, we hope that you can make an informed decision on which guest communication tool is the right fit for you. If you’re looking for an alternative that’s more physical (but still digital!), head over to our YourWelcome tablet review to learn some more!

RueBaRue is a great alternative to TouchStay that lets you create digital guidebooks and automated messages within minutes by integrating with your PMS. Book a demo personalized to your rentals to see the platform in action.

Ready to Get Started?