The Payment Autopilot is a next generation tool that automates the processes related to credit cards, eliminating the need of constant manual intervention, saving time and costs. Furthermore, it lowers risk of potential mistakes and ensures there are no ‘forgotten’ payments.
For example: You can create a task which will automatically charge Expedia Virtual Cards on the arrival date of the respective booking. Another example does not include any payment - you can create a task which will automatically hide the Folio from the MyBooking portal for Expedia bookings that have a Virtual card.
In order to configure a task, navigate to menu Settings->All Settings->Payment Autopilot tasks and essentially answer (by configuration) the 6 questions:
- When to process the payment?
- Which bookings should fall under the scope of the task?
- What should the task do?
- For what amount?
- What to do if the task is successful?
- What to do if the task fails?
You need to define when the task will activate. There are 6 ‘Modes’ (1) to choose from:
- After booking creation
- Up to booking arrival - uses 12:00pm on the arrival day as starting point for offsets. Will cover all expected bookings
- After booking arrival
- Before booking departure - 12:00pm on the departure date as a starting point for offsets.
- After booking departure
- After booking cancellation
Along with the Mode, you also need to enter an ‘Offset’ (2) - how many hours before or after the event will the task trigger.
For example: If you want something to happen a week after booking creation, select 'After booking creation' mode and enter 168 in the offset.
Which bookings to process?
Use this section to specify to which bookings the task applies.
If nothing is selected for a given filter, this filter is not taken into account, i.e. if you don’t choose anything in this section, the task will apply to all bookings:
- Guarantee status (1) - Leave it blank or select the guarantee status the task applies to (Guaranteed, Awaiting guarantee, Expired or Non-Guaranteed). We would like to remind you that the second and third statuses depend on the 'Guarantee Period' setting in the Guarantee Policy.
- Guarantee Policy (2) - For bookings with certain guarantee policies - one or more.
- OTA booking (3) - If bookings are from the channel manager or not:
- Yes - will process only OTA booking;
- No - it will process all other booking apart from OTA ones;
- Empty - will process all bookings.
- Credit Cards in Booking (4) - You can process only bookings containing certain credit cards. The options are:
- No Cards - the task will process only bookings that have no credit cards. There is no way to charge such a booking, but this filter can be used in combination with the following operation: Execute 'On Success' actions only in the 'What to do?' section. See more info below.
- Guest Only - the task will process only bookings that have one or more cards, but all marked as Guest cards, and none as ОТА cards.
- ОТА Only - the task will process only bookings that have one or more cards, but all marked as ОТА (virtual) cards.
- Guest and OTA - the task will process only bookings that have a Guest card and an OTA one.
- Included Companies, Excluded Companies, Included Agents, Excluded Agents (5) - You can select among multiple companies and agents for each of these filters. Please don’t forget to click the Add button when you have selected the company or or the agent.
- Included - will process only bookings that have the respective profile selected as Company or Agent. All other bookings will not be processed
- Excluded - will exclude bookings that are attached to the selected Company/Agent profile.
What to do?
In this section, you can specify what is to be performed by a given task. In the 'Operation' field you can select from:
- Payment - The amount is charged to the credit card.
- Pre-Authorization - The amount is only pre-authorized (blocked) on the credit card. You can capture this amount later on or release it. The pre-authorized amounts are only kept for a certain period of time (usually 14 days), as this period depends on the payment provider, acquirer and credit card type.
- Execute 'On Success' actions only - This option is a little bit peculiar. With it, no payment or pre-authorization will be executed, instead the task will proceed with the actions described below in the 'On Success' section.
Through the 'Use' field you can specify which card (in case there is more than one) to be used for the payment or the pre-authorization. The possible options are:
- Last credit card - the latest credit card in the booking;
- Last OTA credit card - the latest credit card, but among the ones marked as ОТА;
- Last GUEST credit card - the latest credit card from the ones marked as GUEST.
For what Amount?
How the amount for the respective operation should be calculated. In the 'Amount' (1) field you may select among:
- Folio BALANCE based - It uses the folio balance. You can add or subtract (through a negative value) an amount from it as a percentage or fixed sum (2).
For example: Don't enter anything in the “%” field to get the whole balance amount of the folio, or, alternatively, you can enter -50% to calculate a half of the balance. If folio balance is 0, the task will not execute.
- Folio CHARGES based - This method is similar to the model of determining the deposit amount. You can select the charges of which revenue groups to be included in the calculation. The obtained amount can be modified by entering a percentage of it or a number of nights (the average price per night is used for the calculation). There is an additional fixed amount which you can add or subtract.
- Booking required deposit based - It uses the amount due of the required booking deposit. It is the amount calculated as a deposit by the Guarantee policy minus all received payments so far. You can add or subtract (if a negative value entered) a percentage or fixed amount from it (2).
For example: Don’t enter anything in the “%” field to get the whole deposit due, or, alternatively, enter -50% to calculate and charge half of the deposit due.
On Success do / On Fail do
Through the above settings, you can define the payment or the pre-authorization task. In these two sections, on the other hand, you can set what to happen, if the payment/pre-authorization are successful (On Success do) or not (On Fail do). You can choose among the following options:
- Send Booking email (1) - select an email template to be sent to the booking. You can create different email templates containing various texts or instructions.
- Close folio with (2) - select if the folio is to be closed. For example, in case of an automatic payment of the whole balance amount before departure.
- Close folio with (3) - in case folio is closed, select what type of document to be issued.
- Set folio visibility on the MyBooking Portal (4) - change the folio flag specifying if the folio is to be visible on the MyBooking Portal or not.
- Set Guarantee status (5) - On a successful operation, for example, you can make the booking guaranteed or vice versa.
- Create a To-Do (6) - If you wish to create a To-Do for the booking - enter some text. To the text, the calculated amount from the For what Amount? section will be added.
- In case of several open folios in the booking, the automatic tasks will process the actions based on the folio opened the earliest (oldest open folio). Tasks are not actioned if there are only closed folios in the booking.
- The Autopilot checks every 15 minutes if there is a task to be performed.
- You can set a period (in days) post departure (1) after which pre-authorizations will be automatically released. For example, if you enter 0, pre-authorizations will be released immediately after check-out. Leaving the field blank will turn off automatic release.
Important: Auto-release is only triggered in cases where the booking has no obligations (all folios are paid). If any error occurs during automatic release, a task will be created to the booking in the Payments channel.
Important: We encourage you to always contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org to look into the tasks and discuss the desired result with you so we can advise if they are set correctly. Alternatively, you can Test (2) the task before making it Active. This way you ensure that everything works according to your expectations before doing any real transactions.