Vacation rental referral experience policy

There are 2 ways for a user to reach a partner’s site:

  • Booking link
  • Direct link

Booking link referral experience policy

The image shows "visit site" button for vacation rental.

Booking links appear when Google has a price for the user’s requested itinerary. Google passes this information to the partner via booking link so that the landing page matches what the user requested.

Valid destinations for booking links:

  • A property details page on the partner’s website with the requested dates and price shown to the user
  • A list of search results on the partner’s website that meets the following conditions:
    • The user’s selected property is the first result at the top of the page and highlighted prominently. While there are no specific criteria for what highlight means, it must be clear to the user that the property they chose is visible in front of them.
    • Dates passed from Google are pre-selected in the list view and reflective of the price shown to the user.

For more information on how we enforce this policy and how you may appeal a suspension, please refer to the Referral Experience Policy.

Website link referral experience policy

The image shows "website" link button for vacation rental.

Website links appear on properties with or without a listing price. By default, these links aren't associated with any dates and directly link to the property details page on the partner site.

Failure to provide a direct link will cause your listing to be deactivated.. When multiple partners provide a website link for the same property, Google makes a best-effort determination of which link directs the user to the property manager or supplier site and presents that link to the user. Learn more about Vacation rentals direct links.

We accept the following as valid URL destinations for direct links:

  • Property details pages on the partners website
    • We prefer a dateless landing page when possible.
    • If this isn't available, partners can choose to show their default dates and the price associated with them.
    • The landing page must have the following details (either visible or selectable) shown without any action from the user besides scrolling:
      • Property name
      • Occupancy
      • Description
      • Photos
      • Reviews (if available)
      • Booking links
      • Other attributes when available.

For those partners who don’t have the ability to have a standalone property details page (anything beyond a dedicated URL for the property), we will accept a property pinned at the top of a list view, provided it meets the following criteria:

  • The property that the user clicked on must be at the top of the page and highlighted in some fashion.
    • While there are no specific criteria for what highlight means, it must be clear to the user that the property they've chosen is visible in front of them.
  • The pinned card must have the following details (either visible or selectable) shown without any action from the user:
    • Property name
    • Occupancy
    • Photos
  • The booking links must be visible to the user (if they exist).
    • In the case that the booking links don't exist due to lack of availability, there must be a clear message saying so.
  • The card may be able to be collapsed; however, it should be fully expanded upon a user visiting the site from Google

Like booking links, Google uses manual reviews to enforce this policy for website links. If we detect any noncompliance:

  • Google will notify you of the issue and work with you to correct invalid links.
  • If not resolved, your listings or Hotel Center account may be temporarily suspended.

While Google will always reach out to the partner to correct invalid direct links, possible consequences for repeated or continued violations include removal of direct links, listing suppression, or even temporary account suspension.

In case of an account suspension, you may have the option to appeal the decision. If you disagree with a suspension decision and want us to reconsider our position, you may submit an appeal via the Contact Us Form in Hotel Center Help or within your Hotel Center account.

For EU users covered by the European Union’s Digital Services Act (DSA)

Review the European Union Digital Service Act resolution options for additional appeal options.

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