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Differences Between Syncing Turno with API Integrations and iCals
Differences Between Syncing Turno with API Integrations and iCals

As a host, learn the differences between API integrations and iCals to help you decide on what will best suit your needs.

Mai avatar
Written by Mai
Updated over a week ago

There are two ways to sync your booking calendars with Turno to generate projects: through API integrations with partner platforms or by adding an iCal link to your property. While both methods function similarly and will generate projects for you, they present a few small differences. This article aims to outline these characteristics, helping you choose which method to use.

🤓 What is an iCal?

iCal, short for iCalendar, is a universal file format used to exchange calendar data. It allows users to share calendar events, appointments, and schedules between different applications and platforms. iCals are often used to import and export data, which enables sharing events with others or synchronizing calendars across different devices and platforms. Please note that iCal files typically have a .ics extension.

If you decide to go with the iCal option after you read this article, check out the guide below that will walk you through adding it to your property 😉

🤓 What is API Integration?

API integration is the process of connecting different software applications or systems through their APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) so they can communicate and interact with each other. APIs define how software components should interact and exchange information, allowing developers to create seamless connections between applications and share data in a controlled and standardized manner. One such piece of data that can be shared this way is a calendar, which means it can be used to synchronize calendars between platforms as well.

Going with the API Integration option after you read this article? check out the guide below that will walk you through adding an integration to your account 😉

🤓 What is the difference between the iCal and the API Integration?

In summary, iCal offers a method of sharing fundamental calendar data between various applications through exporting and importing standardized .ics type files. In contrast, API integration empowers more robust and dynamic interactions, enabling direct communication between applications and facilitating a diverse array of calendar-related tasks. Consequently, opting for API integration comes with supplementary advantages.

Adding properties

Arguably the most significant difference for many users is the ease of simultaneous listing synchronization facilitated by API integration with a platform. With API integrations, the Turno system can automate property creation and listing linkage, even allowing the convenience of syncing with existing properties all at once. In contrast, when opting for iCal, users need to manually establish properties and individually associate calendars with each property. Further details on this distinction can be found in the two articles shared earlier.

Guest and booking information

One of the perks that is appreciated by hosts using API integrations is that most of our partners can export the number of guests to Turno automatically. This information will then be displayed for hosts and their cleaners in the details of their projects.

This, unfortunately, is usually not possible to get from iCals. Our system can only retrieve the number of guests in a booking if this information is somehow available within the iCal itself, and generally, it is not available.

You can read more about this feature in the following guide:

An important consideration is that when it comes to iCals, our system doesn't sync with past booking information. This means that when it's past midnight, we can't sync with data from the previous day anymore, but when it comes to the API, this isn't a problem.

The Quality Center

Last but not least, our partnership with Airbnb has allowed us to develop a new perk for Airbnb users, which is the Quality Center.

The Quality Center offers additional information to help enhance hosting services by collecting data, such as cleanliness ratings and guest reviews. It links the feedback received on Airbnb with the cleaners assigned to the respective cleaning projects on Turno, displays trend analysis, and provides valuable recommendations for improvements.

Read more about the Turno Quality Center in the article linked below:

🤓 Which option should I use?

Ultimately, the choice between additional perks (API Integration) and simplicity (iCals) really goes according to the users' preferences. Both options can appeal to and interest users in their own distinct ways, so it's really something that you need to ponder when considering which is the best option for your business needs.

⚠️It's crucial to remember that certain platforms, like Airbnb, can be connected through both iCal and API integration. However, for most platforms, the connection is limited to either iCal or API, not both.

📚 Read more

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