Individuals and management companies use vacation rental management software tools to streamline the property management process. Most end-to-end solutions usually offer hosted direct booking websites, a channel manager, listing management features, and guest communication tools.
There are a wide variety of VRMS tools available on the market today, and it can be hard to decide which is best for you and your business. This guide will discuss the key differences between iGMS and Hostfully, highlight the significant benefits of each, and make recommendations to help you choose the best software for your business.
All of our recommendations are based on research, product demos with the software companies, and dozens of hours spent hand-testing the vacation rental management tools. More details regarding our research process can be found on our vacation rental management category page.
iGMS & Hostfully Comparison Summary
Between the two, iGMS is a great mid-tier solution for smaller hosts with properties listed on Airbnb or Booking.com. Hostfully is better suited for those with a large property portfolio and a larger budget for software tools.
Here's a breakdown of our review criteria and how iGMS and Hostfully ranked in each category:
|Criteria||Analyst Rating||Features||Usability||Pricing||Customer Support|
iGMS is a reliable mid-tier tool that would work great for those with a handful of properties. There are strong automation features for guest messaging and property tasks, and those who want ultimate flexibility can choose the Flexible Plan. Customer support was particularly helpful when we had questions while testing the tool. A few notable drawbacks are that iGMS lacks a website feature and only has API connections with three channels.
Hostfully, on the other hand, is designed for large, professional property management companies. It has unique digital guidebooks to send to guests, a pipeline view to track check-ins and bookings, and owner portals. Customers should note that the setup fees can be steep and that the product is not quite as easy to learn as iGMS. However, its features and capabilities will suit management companies who must manage properties for many different owners.
Here’s are a few quick points about who we recommend each tool for:
- You’re a smaller host with around ten properties
- You don’t need a hosted website
- You prefer a tool that’s simultaneously reliable and easy to use and install
- You’re an enterprise-size customer or a management company
- You have a larger budget to spend on your VRMS
- You’d like your software to help provide a premium customer experience
Table of Contents
- iGMS & Hostfully Comparison Summary
- Who Should Purchase iGMS?
- Who Should Purchase Hostfully?
- iGMS & Hostfully Price Comparison
- iGMS & Hostfully Feature Comparison
- Bottom Line
Who Should Purchase iGMS?
iGMS is a valuable property management tool for those with up to ten properties and the desire to automate tasks. The Flexible Plan allows for hosts to pay only for nights each property is booked and a 14-day free trial enables prospective customers to try the product risk-free.
During testing, we found no major software issues. The main inconvenience of the tool is that there’s currently no direct booking website feature, and there’s also no widget that you can install on an existing website to take bookings through. If this isn’t a hindrance for your company, the tool will likely benefit you in all other aspects. We also found their customer service to be one of the best among companies we reviewed— when we had trouble syncing an Airbnb account, the issue was resolved in about 20 minutes.
Who Should Purchase Hostfully?
Hostfully is valuable because of its unique features, which are the Digital Guidebooks and the pipeline booking view. The software tool offers API connections with booking channels and has an open API to sync with channels that aren’t already established. The company is more hands-on with its customers due to a $400 implementation fee.
The main drawback is the relatively high price, but for a premium product, you’ll pay higher prices. The Starter plan doesn’t come with full API connections to the largest channel managers, so the value of that plan is less than the two more expensive plans. The analytics and reporting sections were also a bit more restricted than some competitors. Overall, however, Hostfully is a great tool that would make it easy to provide guests with a top-notch experience.
iGMS & Hostfully Price Comparison
iGMS has a more flexible and lower upfront cost. Hostfully has a $400 implementation fee unless you sign up for a year-long contract and is generally more expensive. The pricing reflects the included features—iGMS has fewer features and will therefore cost a bit less.
iGMS starts at $1 per booked night and can go as high as $30 per property per month. There’s also a free plan that, while basic, can help those who don’t want to pay for a vacation rental management software. On the other hand, Hostfully begins at $79 per month and can go as high as $1500 per month for enterprise customers.
iGMS Pricing Details
iGMS pricing details are outlined below.
Hostfully Pricing Details
Hostfully certainly has a higher upfront cost between the two tools, with a $400 implementation fee and a starting price of $79. Pricing ranges from $79 to over $250 per month depending on the amount of properties. The Guidebook feature begins free and can range anywhere from $8 per month to over $45 per month.
iGMS & Hostfully Feature Comparison
iGMS and Hostfully offer many of the same features, but in general, Hostfully has more features to offer. The key things to note are that iGMS does not offer a hosted website feature and that Hostfully offers the Digital Guidebook feature as an add-on to the property management software. For a full analysis of each solution’s features, read our iGMS review and Hostfully review.
|Direct Booking Website||No||Yes|
|Property Management Features||Yes||Yes|
|Automated Guest Messaging||Yes||Yes|
|Owner Access and Tasks||Yes||Yes|
iGMS's Top Features
Some iGMS features, including the multi-calendar, messaging inbox, and property management section, are outlined below. We’ll provide images of these sections to give you a sense of what it’s like to work with the software, and make note of any significant benefits and drawbacks.
Within each listing with iGMS, you can see general information, see the synchronized calendars, alter pricing information, automate management and cleaning tasks, and more. This section is easy to use and configure, and you can import listings from Booking.com directly into the iGMS dashboard.
The multi-calendar within iGMS keeps bookings from integrated channels housed in one calendar. While the existing API integrations are helpful, there are only three API integrations, and many competitors offer four or more. If your primary listing channels are Airbnb, Booking.com, or HomeAway/Vrbo, then the existing integrations will work well.
Communicating with guests is a key part of the customer experience, and the iGMS inbox is streamlined and effective. When we sent messages to “guests”, they were delivered promptly. The inbox also syncs with guest messages sent directly from Airbnb, HomeAway, and Booking.com. The automated message templates are notably strong, given that they’re already configured.
The review automation feature within iGMS is unique, as it allows hosts to review their guests. Because there is often a two-way rating system in channels, where hosts review guests and guests review the hosts, this makes it easy for hosts to initiate the review process.
Hostfully's Top Features
Hostfully’s best and most unique feature is the Guidebooks feature, which is a digital vacation guide sent to each visitor. Along with standard features like the channel manager, property management features, and task management features, Hostfully has a unique pipeline view to help track bookings. There are objectively more features offered in Hostfully than in iGMS. For a full walkthrough of Hostfully’s features, check out the full review here.
This feature, which iGMS doesn’t have, is a unique way to curate a virtual booklet filled with guest information. The Guidebooks can be simple, including directions to the vacation rental and wifi information, or can be made very complex, with recommendations for tasks around the area, maps, and parking information. This is a great feature and one of the biggest selling points for Hostfully.
Bookings & Pipeline View
To manage bookings, there are API integrations with Airbnb, Booking.com, HomeAway/Vrbo, and TripAdvisor. The pipeline view shows which properties have inquiry requests, bookings, and check-in/check-out dates. This view also shows leads, conversions, and the total amount in sales. Especially for property management companies, this is a great feature to track the activity of many properties.
The centralized calendar is equally as helpful as the iGMS centralized calendar. It displays a list view of properties and shows which channels each booking came through. You can filter by location, agent, property availability, and more.
IGMS is better for those with smaller companies and budgets. Hostfully is better for those searching for a premium solution.
- iGMS is a solid, reliable tool with great customer support. It works well to manage properties and is a cost-effective choice given its flexible pricing plans.
- Hostfully is a pricey, premium product for larger vacation rental management companies. It’s a great choice for those who want their software to help facilitate a superior guest experience, and has a broader features list than iGMS.