VR Calendar Sync - Responsive Booking Plugin
Pro and Enterprise Versions Documentation
Please note you do not need to activate your licnese key if you purchased this plugin from Envato or Code Canyon, as they have their own licnese system. This only applies to those who purchased via www.vrcalendarsync.com
Install the plugin and activate like any other Wordpress plugin.
Now, Go to your Plugins Menu, then choose the VR Calendar Sync Plugin License submenu.
1) Enter your license key which you received via email after you purchased your plugin.
2) Save Changes BEFORE you click Activate to store your license key in the plugin
3) Click on “Activate License”, in a few seconds you should see a green “active” next to the button.
4) You are now good to go! You can receive automatic updates and email support for 12 months from your date of purchase.
If you purchased via Code Canyon / Envato, you can only get updates directly from there. You must install them manually. This only applies to those who purchased via www.vrcalendarsync.com
Most of the time, the "auto update" feature works perfectly and you can update the plugin code as long as your license is active and you have time left on your subscription.
If your auto update doesn't work, please first check that your plugin is active (you will see a Green "Active" text). For more details see the "How to Activate your Plugin section".
If your plugin is active, and the auto-update fails, then you can do the following to download the latest version manually. It is not that hard.
How to manually get the latest plugin
1) Go to http://www.vrcalendarsync.com/customer-login/
2) Click on View Details and Downloads
3) If your license key is still active, you will see the link to Download the plugin, which will automatically be the latest version.
VR Calendar Sync is pretty easy to use and setup. We will walk you through all the options in this document.
Once the plugin is installed, you will notice on "VR Calendar Sync" Menu Item on the left hand menu. All functions, settings, and info is contained in sub-menus under the VR Calendar Sync Menu.
To Add A Calendar, Simply Click on the Add Calendar Link under the VR Calendar Dashboard as shown below.
The Add Calendar Tab has a lot of option on it, and there is where you can setup most of the settings.
A - General: These are the main fields of the basic calendar that we will describe below.
B - Booking Options: See Booking Options Tab for more details
C - Color Options: See Color Options Tab for more details
D - Email Templates: See Email Templates for more details
To finish adding the Calendar, input the required details. More information on each field:
1 - Calendar Name: Any Name you like to describe this calendar.
2 - Calendar Link: You can add up to 5 calendar / ics links per calendar in pro, and 10 per calendar in enterprise.
3 - Calendar Link Name: Each calendar link can have an easy to remember short name. Good names for these would be where they come from, such as "VRBO", "Airbnb", "Google Calendar" etc, as in Booking Details, you can sort by the source of the bookings based on this short name.
4 - Link: This is the actual ics / ical link from the calendar you want to import. You can import links from a variety of sources, such as Airbnb, VRBO, Homeaway, and Google Calendar.
The link format should look something like this: "http://admin.vrbo.com/icalendar/xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.ics"
Add Calendar - General (Tab A) - Continued
5 - Unavailable Dates: Here you can set any dates you like as unavailable for booking. These will be blocked from accepting any reservations but will not be exported as reserved to other calendars (since technically, there is no reservation). If you want dates exported as reserved to other calendars (see more details in Calendar and Sync Export), then you have to actually make a reservation. You can do this easily as well, set your calendar as no payment required, no admin approval required, then go to the front end and make the bookings you desire. Then set payment / admin approval back on.
6 - Columns, Rows: In section 3 you select the number of rows and columns you would like your calendar to have.
(No number) Display Number of Months - Here you can set how many months are "loaded" when the calendar loads. Sometimes, to make your page load faster, you can set this number lower so the plugin will not preload too many months. If you are unsure what to do here, just leave it blank on setup.
7 - Size: Here you can select a calendar size of Small, Medium, or Large. Sizes will be automatically adjusted based on the device type and resolution of the viewer.
8 - Standard One Day Bookings: If you select this, then the calendar will book the ENTIRE day not a half-day at check-out and check-in. For Vacation Rental uses, the only time you would want to use this is if you do not want a check out and check in on the same day.
(No Number) - Hourly Booking: This is a beta feature, not currently supported.
9 - Booking Form location: Here, you can choose where to put the booking form. It can either be located on a different page then the calendar, in which case the user must click on their start date then they are brought to the booking page to complete their booking. If you choose the same page, then you get a sub-choice of either next to or below the calendar. Here the user can click on the start date, then the end date, and complete their booking without being re-directed to another page. Please note: If the user chooses the wrong start date and needs to reset the start date, they may have to refresh the page as its hard to select a new start date.
The Bookings Options tab allows you to set prices for your nights, weeks, and months and collect payments. A lot of options to set on this page, we will review all of them below.
1 - Enable Booking: If set to no, users will not be able to book nights on the calendar. It will be for display purposes only. If set to yes, then users can book nights on your calendar. Be sure to set your nightly price at a minimum or you cannot save.
Search Bar Booking Features - Per Calendar
The below features are only used for the search bar. They let you customize how this particular listing is displayed when the property is displayed in the search results.
If you have the Pro version (no search bar, sorry, maybe time to upgrade?) then no need to fill out these features as they are not necessary for you, you can just skip them.
2 - Booking URL: This is used when you create a search bar. Insert any URL here, but most people would use it to post the booking or availability page of the unit so the user can see the details and book the unit if they want to directly from the search bar.
3 - Listing Image: Search bar feature, shows image in the search bar results.
4 - Listing Address: Search bar feature, shows map of the unit on the search bar
5 - Summary: Search bar feature, shows summary of the unit on the search bar
Regular Bookings Features - Per Calendar
6 - Default Price Per Night: Set the price per night that applies to most nights. You can set the price to anything you like, between 0 and $10,000. Prices are only in USD (more currency options coming soon).
7- Minimum Number of Nights: You can set a default number of minimum nights here. Seasonal minimum nights will override this and can be set below.
8 - Offer Weekly Price: If you select this, then you can set a discount weekly price.
9 - Offer Monthly Price: If you select this, then you can set a discount monthly price.
10 - Cleaning fee per stay: Set a fixed amount to be charged for each stay for cleaning, or leave this blank if you have no cleaning fee.
11 - Taxes per stay: Here you can set your taxes for the stay. This can be either in a fixed dollar amount, or percentage of the total amount (choose below).
12 - Max guest number: Set the maximum number of guests for your listing.
13 - Charge Extra After Guests Number: You can decide to charge more for each guest after a certain number, and up to the max. For instance, if you want to charge $10 extra per guest after 2 guests, set this to 2.
14 - Extra Charge Price: Per above, this is how much you charge for each extra guest. So in the above example, you would set this to $10 to charge $10 for each extra guest.
15 - Extra Fees: This is a default box, that you charge for extra items if applicable such as parking, a damage deposit, a resort fee, or any other fee that you need to charge.
16 - Custom Label: Here you can change the name of the "extra fees" if you so desire, to match their purpose. Example could be parking, damage deposit, etc.
17 - Weekend pricing. You can set special prices that apply only for Friday, Saturday, or Sunday nights. Seasonal prices will over-ride these prices.
18 - Seasonal Pricing: Here you can apply custom prices for certain date ranges that will override your default price. This custom price can be higher or lower than your standard default price, can optionally also include a weekly or monthly price, as well a minimum night, and you can set as many of these as you like.
19 - Taxes Type: Select the type of taxes that apply to section 4, percent of final stay amount (%) or a fixed dollar amount ($)
20 - Payment Method: Choose between Stipe, Paypal, Both, or None. If you choose Stripe, users will be presented with a section to enter their credit card details on checkout. If you choose Paypal, then the user will be presented a "Pay by Paypal" button that allows them to complete the checkout. If you choose both, then the user will be presented with two buttons "Pay by Credit Card" or "Pay by Paypal". If you choose none, then the user can book without paying. In the later instance, you may wish to be sure to enable option 9 to allow admin approval (see option 9 details) otherwise users can book time without any interaction by the admin and without paying. Some owners wish to take payment by other means, such as a check or cash on arrival, so in that case the "none" option can be used where you can contact and work out other means of payment with your guests.
21 - Deposit Enable: If you check this then you can set a certain amount to be collected at the time of booking, and a certain amount to be collected X number of days before the stay begins. The default behavior is to collect 100% at the time of booking, but if you use this feature then you can collect whatever percentage you like, such as 50% at the time of booking, with the balance collected 30 days before their stay begins. The user will get an email at 30 days reminding them to pay their balance, but after that you will have to check manually that they paid. You can also manually send out a payment reminder (see the Booking Details Tab).
22 - Requires Admin Approval: This option if set to "Yes" will email the site admin whenever any guest requests a booking. The admin will then have to either review and approve or deny the booking before the guest can continue on to payment. If it is set to "No", then guests can immediately move on to the payment screen after making a booking request. Caution: If payment method is set to "None", and admin approval is set to "No", guests can immediately book timeslots without paying and without admin approval.
Be sure to use the "Save" button at the bottom of the page to save changes before leaving the screen.
The Colors for each part of the calendar can be modified in the Color Options section. Each calendar can have different colors depending on your requirements.
See the map below to see what each color will modify:
Email Templates let you customize the wording of the emails we send to you and your guests. We review the key options here.
1 - To: This field specifies where the admin emails go. By default, they go to the Wordpress Admin default email address. However, if that is not the personal managing the calendar, then you can set an additional email address here by selecting "Custom". If you select "Both", then both the WP-Admin and the Custom address you specify will get the admin emails from VR Calendar.
2 - 13 Email Templates: Below are all the emails that are sent. You can change the wording to suit your style, add your signature, etc.
The booking details is accessed by highlighting a calendar on the Dashboard, the clicking on Bookings.
Once you are in the booking details, you can see all your confirmed or pending bookings.
1 - Filter: You can Filter bookings by the source. Any bookings you receive from your website are labelled as "Web Site Bookings". Other bookings are marked with the source name that you specified when you set up the calendar, such as Airbnb, VRBO, etc.
2 - Paging: Looking for a specific page, make sure you scroll to the next or last page.
3 - Status: This is really important. If Admin approval is required, this will be labelled as Pending. If it is not required, or if the admin approved, it will be Confirmed.
4 - Payment Status: Once the booking is confirmed, then a link is sent for payment to the user with your payment method that you setup on Booking Details. The payment status can either be Not Required if no payment is required, Pending if not paid yet, or Confirmed meaning it is paid.
5 - Send Reminder Email: If you have not yet received payment for a booking, you can resend a payment reminder email to the guest. Once payment is confirmed, this option disappears.
From booking Details, if you highlight a Booking, you can then select Edit to manually update any field in the booking
As the warning states, please be careful, you have total power here to edit whatever you like, and you cannot back out changes once they are made.
Adding a Search Bar is a great way to upgrade the functionality of your Vacation Rental Site!
Search bars allow your users to check one, several, or all of your properties at once for availability. Users can quickly get an idea of all your inventory at a glance, check listing details, and even book a property directly from the results.
Search Bar Look and Feel
You can insert the VR Calendar Sync search bar on any page or post you like, simply using a unique short code. It allows users to choose a check in and check out date, as well as the number of guests to filter rooms for the search.
Search Bar Results
The search bar results are displayed on your choice of two pages, the same page (inline) or on a different page that is specific for search results, its up to you. The search bar is still displayed at the top, so the customer can refine their search if they like or in case of no results.
The search results show a preview picture of the room or rental, a location on a google map, a breakdown of the prices and a brief description. Then they can view the listing, or book directly from the form!
Search Bar Setup
To setup the search bar, you can choose several options. Search bars can search a single calendar, all your calendars, or any number of VR Calendar’s that you like. So you can create one search bar to search half of your calendars, and another search bar to search all your calendars! There are no limits to the number of search bars you can create with VR Calendar Sync Enterprise Edition.
Search Bar Color Options
The search bar can of course be configured to meet your site’s requirements. You can Change the colors of the font, background, and search button to suit your needs.
The Settings Section is where you can configure the various options of VR Calendar Sync. We will review each one in detail here.
Options 1 - 4 are pages automatically created for you when you install the plugin. These pages are necessary requirements for the plugin to function, however you don't have to use our defaults. You can select ANY page you want to be the Thank You page, for instance, as long as you insert the thank you page short code [vrc_thankyou /] and choose it above. So if you already have a thank you page and don't wish to use the default one, just select your existing thank you page in option 3 and insert the short code as shown above. This is the same for any page of options 1 - 4. You can also modify these default pages as much as you like via wordpress, go into your pages section and select the page you like to edit. You can add text, images, etc to fully customize these pages to make them your own. The pages are now described below.
1 - Booking Page: This page is where the user makes an initial request for booking.
2 - Payment Page: This page where the customer enters their payment details.
3 - Thank You Page: This page is shown after the custom complete a successful booking.
4 - Payment Cancel Page: This page is shown when the custom cancels their payment before completion.
5 - PayPal ID: This should be your PayPal email address. We support PayPal Payments Standard.
6 - Stripe API Key (private): Enter your private Stirpe API key from your Stripe dashboard. Only your private key needs to be entered here. You can find more details on our stripe keys here: https://support.stripe.com/questions/where-do-i-find-my-api-keys
7 - Payment Mode: Here you can choose the payment mode of live or sandbox. If you are still testing your site and integrations, you can use the sandbox mode so real payments will not be processed.
8 - Auto Sync: This specifies how often the plugin should check the ics link for updates. The default is daily, meaning your calendar will be updated once per day. You can also choose twice daily, hourly, or disable if you want to stop the syncing.
Newer options added
Search bar result page: This is the page that shows search bar results (Enterprise Only)
Show Attribution Link: Here you can turn off the "Powered By Vacation Rental Calendar Sync" at the bottom of the calendar
Load J Query UI: This can resolve some theme conflicts. Do not change this setting unless you are having theme issues.
Currency: Set your currency type here. All worldwide currencies supported (but check with Paypal or Stripe if your currency is supported, that changes frequently and that is obviously outside of our control).
Select a Language: Our plugin is fully WPML compatible, so if you are using that you can translate any string! However, for those not using that you can select to show the calendar in Spanish or French.
Make sure to Save your changes at the bottom of the page when you are done.
Once your Calendar has been set up, it is time to add it to your site! Luckily, this is super easy. All you need to do is go back to the VR Calendar Sync Dashboard, and copy the shortcode of either the Calendar, or the Booking Button and then place it on your desired Page or Post.
In this case above, the "Calendar Shortcode" would be [vrcalendar id=5"/]
You can copy and paste that to insert it anywhere you like.
Booking Button Shortcode
the booking Shortcode is another useful feature. In cases where you don't want to show the entire calendar, but instead want a way for a user to bring up the booking screen, you can insert this shortcode along with the text or image or your choice. For instance, if you want a link on your homepage that says "Click here to Book a Stay with us Now", then simply insert a shortcode like this:
[vrcalendar_booking_btn id="5" class=""]Click here to Book a Stay with us Now[/vrcalendar_booking_btn]
You can also update the class to match your CSS if you so desire (or just ignore this if you don't know that that means).
Lastly, I just want to highlight some of the most common problems people have with their calendars:
Q: On how many websites can I run my plugin?
A: The free version can be installed on as many websites as you like! The Pro and Enterprise versions are limited to one website (domain) per purchase. You can purchase additional site licenses at a discount, just contact us.
Q: Can I run more than one VR Calendar Sync Plugin at one time?
A: No, only one version of VR Calendar Sync can be running at any given time. To prevent errors you should uninstall and delete other versions of the plugin when you get a new version.
Q: How many calendars does each version support?
A: The Free supports 1 Calendar, the Pro 10 Calendars, and the Enterprise 100 Calendars. We also offer custom plugins for larger operations, just ask (up to 500 at the moment with our Enterprise 500)
Q: How many .ics links does each version support?
A: The Free supports 3 .ics links, the Pro 5 .ics links per calendar, and the Enterprise supports 10 ics links per calendar.
Q: Can I use one calendar for multiple listings?
A: Nothing prevents you from doing that, however you will probably want to show each of your listing’s availability separately, so the most common use is one calendar per listing.
Q: What does “fully responsive” mean?
A: This means that the calendar actually will re-size itself automatically to fit any size screen! That way, it will look nice and the user will not have to scroll if they are browsing a large calendar on a small device, like a smart phone. This is a must have for many users, and we designed our VR Calendar to look great on any website and on any size screen!
Q: Can I take bookings and process payments with VR Calendar?
A: Yes! The Pro and Enterprise versions support Paypal standard payments, and Stripe integration! It is very easy to setup!
Q: Can I take payments with both paypal and stripe? Or do I have to choose one or the other?
A: With Pro or Enterprise vacation rental calendar plugins, you can use either one, or both, at the same time! If you want to give you guests the option to use either, you can select that in the booking settings on each calendar.
Q: How can I insert a calendar into any page or post that I want? Can I insert the calendar into more than one page or post at a time?
A: We use a wordpress standard called a shortcode. This allows you to easily insert the VR Calendar anywhere you like. Just simply copy the shortcode from your dashboard, and insert it directly into the page / post. You can have the same calendar displayed as many times as you like!
Q: Do I have the option to manually approve each booking before the guest books?
A: Yes, you do. You can turn on the option “Requires Admin Approval” from the booking settings tab. This will then allow guests to submit a “Request to Book” for a certain date or time, then will send the admin an email alerting them to the request. They can then approve or deny the request. Once approved, the guest will get an email letting them know they can proceed with the booking and payment.
Q: Can I automatically add a Tax to the total?
A: Yes you can add a percentage or fixed amount to each booking.
Q: Can I add a cleaning fee to each booking?
A: Yes, you can add a fixed price cleaning fee to each booking.
Q: Can I change the price per night for a given date range (like high or low season, Christmas, new years, etc), but keep the default price the same for other nights?
A: Yes, you can do that! Just click on Custom Price Per Night in the Bookings Settings Tabs.
Q: Can you sync from google calendars?
A: Yes, not a problem. Just get your .ics link from google and enter into your calendar.
Q: How do I get my .ics link from VRBO or Airbnb?
A: To find your iCal / .ics link from Airbnb and VRBO, follow this set of instructions.
Q: I just installed the plugin, but the the Last Updated Date shows as “Dec 1, 1970” or some other old or long ago date, how do I fix that?
A: The plugin is setup to sync daily as the default option, so this just means it didn’t auto sync yet. You can manually force a sync at anytime from the dashboard. Just go to the calendar you wish to sync, and click “Sync”. See the image below:
Q: What settings can I change with your plugin?
A: Settings you can change are shown below. You can update the frequency of the sync (daily, twice daily, hourly, or none), as well as your booking info (paypal and stripe secret keys), plus the thank you and other pages that guests land on after booking.
Q: How do I get support?
A: You can email us on the Contact Page. If you need technical support, please include your license key.
Q: Do you offer phone support?
A: No, support is only offered by email from our contact page.
Q: Can you help me install and setup the plugin?
A: Yes, we can! Installation and setup is $50, which includes setup of one calendar. For setup of additional calendars, they will be $10 each. Payment via paypal, a link will be provided. Please contact us if you are interested.
Q: If I buy the Pro or Enterprise versions, do I get Free upgrades?
A: Yes, of course! Every purchase comes with free upgrades and support for a full year from the date of purchase. If you wish to extend your support license past that date, you must purchase a new license once yours expires.
Q: If my license expired, can I still use the plugin?
A: Yes the software you purchased never expires! Just the option to get support and upgrades when we release new features expires. But if you purchased the software, it is yours to keep for as long as you like and doesn’t expire.
We have already shown you how to import ICS links from Airbnb, VRBO, Google etc.
Now we can show you how to export you consolidated calendar BACK to the source site, such as Airbnb, VRBO, etc.
1 - iCal URL: Simply paste this link into the iCal / ICS link spot in your Airbnb, VRBO, or Google Calendar and this calendar data will be exported to the site of your choice!
To use the deposit feature, see more details under bookings options - TAB B
if you need help, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your plugin version type (Pro, Enterprise), where you purchased (website, or Envato) and your license code for quickest response.