PMS API Snakes and Ladders. Plus Guest Tech Stack Ideas!

Use your Property Management Software APIs to improve guest experience and revenue

5 min read

Read ahead and find out what an open, or private API is, which is best, what to check when choosing a property management system and some ideas for building out your super guest and revenue tech stack!

Check - does your property management system have APIs. If it does, are they open or private and what’s the cost of using them?

Find out if your PMS has APIs. If no, then you can’t craft an amazing tech stack. Boo hoo. You roll 1’s continuously with the dice. It's going to be a long game.

See what the cost is, if any of accessing these APIs. If it is really expensive - boo hoo. It’ll either have to go in next year’s budget, or be shelved completely. Your amazing guest experience will have to wait. You roll 2-3’s but hit a snake early on and slide back.

Find out it’s free, or affordable – woo hoo! You are rolling 6’s and hitting all ladders.

Quick reminder. What is the difference between private and open APIs?


Private APIs  not publically available. Has a self service user experience when permission granted. Give access to partners or customers. Overall improves agility and speed of development and connections.

Open APIs  the open source approach. Create instructions and just open it up. Encourages experimentation with data. Get info and analytics on users to learn from.

Which is better open or private API?

Both can have the same end result, but the approach is different. If you are a hotel, or accommodation provider open APIs mean more experimental products and services, but more risk to data. Private APIs mean less risk, but more measured products and services which are planned. If you are just looking to get an API done, whether your PMS provider is private or open is irrelevant. You just need to know is it free or affordable, do they have documentation, processes and the correct development areas? If so hurrah! You are moving up ladders and rolling 6’s!

Pick a property management system with APIs

It’s important to know as if you pick property management software with no APIs, whether private or open, they will not be able to write and integrate with other software and services. If you pick one that does, then you have opened up many options to build out how your tech stack is working together.

Check which APIs. Just one, or many and for what purpose?

At Elina PMS we take the approach of managing API integrations to help the accommodation provider in the Elina platform. We make sure each integration request has an NDA which takes minutes, a kick off conversation, a purpose, help if needed, testing and certification.

Sometimes we write the integration, sometimes the partner does and sometimes a 3rd party writes it for the hotel, serviced apartment or vacation rental business.

Elina Property Management Software is not a data provider, but we do host data for our customers. We are a product company and so also an information manager. We also pay attention to three things to help our customers get the best outcome.

Quality of UI  we check whether the user interface makes sense. Is it using the data in a way that helps the end user.

Consider use or misuse of data  we check how the data is being used. This is responsible, as the data is that of the accommodation providers and of their guests. It needs to be managed carefully.

Protecting your data  we ask ourselves is the data safe? Is it being exposed to risk it should not.


1.    Room temperature

Connect your PMS to a climate control system and let the guest choose the temperature of the room before they arrive.

2.    Door entry

Let your guests open their door with the Bluetooth on their phone when they get in range, or send them their door code on their day of arrival which is valid only as long as they stay.

3.    Upsell services

Connect to an app to allow guests to upgrade their room, or select an add on to their stay pre arrival or during.

4.    CRMs

Use a CRM with a ticketing system and response times to ensure your team get back to guests in the fastest way.

5.    Guest app

Let guests check in pre-arrival, or communicate via the app and order a late checkout. Let guests know when their deposit is returned and more. Order food to be delivered, or in room service.

6.    Housekeeping app

Get that room perfect. Get housekeepers really organised and delivering a fantastic service including personalised room preferences from their last stay, or pre-arrival messages.

7.    In room tablets

Give the guest an in-room or in-apartment tablet which acts as a control for their stay, welcomes them in, fields check in, or is personalised to their preferences. Order room service, or delivery.

8.    Price optimisation

Reduce rates and increase rates to earn the most revenue per room. Allow rates to flex based on algorithms using data from the market, competition and of course your property management system.

9.    Booking a dinner table

Let the guest book a table for their stay when they book their room. Make things as easy as possible and organised for those of us, who like to plan or are super scheduled.

What can you think of?

Here’s the thing. All these products and services exist, so we say chat to your PMS about what they are already connected to and also see whether you can use APIs to build out your tech stack easily. Are you rolling 6’s and climbing ladders, or 1’s and sliding down snakes? Use tech to your advantage to improve your guest experience 

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