Most short-term rental hosts have an endless to-do list of repetitive tasks that’s nearly impossible to get through in a day. 

Are you struggling to keep up with:

  • Messaging your guests and writing reviews?
  • Updating your availability on booking channels?
  • Manually adjusting your rates?
  • Doing in-person key handovers?
  • Managing your cleaners and maintenance staff?

You’re not alone. Most of us who manage short-term rental properties have gone through this. But there’s a better way to run short-term rentals.

By automating the most time-consuming aspects of your business using vacation rental software, you can eliminate all of these mundane tasks. You just need to find the right tool to help you.

Host Tools is an affordable, easy-to-use channel manager and automation software that can help you become more efficient from day one.

But how do you know it’s the right tool for you? How does it compare to other tools like Guesty? That’s what you’ll find out in this blog post.

And while you’re doing research on automation tools, check out our comparison of iGMS vs Host Tools and Smartbnb vs Host Tools, too.

Host Tools provides an automated, unified calendar for short-term rental hosts, allowing you to seamlessly list on all major channels. Start your free trial today! 

Host Tools

Host Tools


Channel integrations

Airbnb, Vrbo, Houfy

Airbnb, Vrbo,, Expedia, Agoda + more (15 API connections)

Messaging automation

Review automation

Pricing automation

Availability sync

Smart lock support


Direct booking

(via Houfy)

Unified inbox

iCal support


Cleaner management

Noise detection

Guesty vs Host Tools: Pricing

Prices for services can change over time. You can visit their respective pricing pages to check the current pricing for Guesty or Host Tools. However, Host Tools is generally a more affordable option than Guesty if you're a host with only a few listings.

Considering all the features included in the pricing plan, it’s the best per month option that you can spend. Even if you only have one rental, Host Tools is still worth it because it allows you to fully automate your short-term rental business without cutting into your profits.

An example of what's included in our basic Messaging plan:

  • Multi-channel manager (Airbnb, VRBO, HomeAway & Houfy + add other calendars via iCal))
  • Automate messages to guests
  • Automate SMS or email messages
  • Automated reviews
  • Automated pre-approvals
  • Unified inbox

Guesty vs Host Tools: Free trial

Guesty free trial

Guesty has a 14-day free trial. 

Host Tools free trial

Host Tools has a 14-day free trial. That’s more than enough time to get acquainted with the tool, connect your accounts, start sending automated messages and try setting smart prices. 

If you need any help getting started, you can reach out directly to me – I developed Host Tools to help property managers automate repetitive tasks. I’m happy to support you with whatever you need. 

After two weeks using Host Tools, you’ll have enough experience with it to make your decision.

Try Host Tools free. No credit card required.

Guesty vs Host Tools: Channel manager

Guesty channel manager

Guesty has direct integrations with these channels: Airbnb, Vrbo,,  Expedia, Agoda + 15 API connections.

It also has a multi-calendar so you can manage all your bookings in one dashboard. Thanks to the unified inbox, you can see all your conversations in one place. And, if you connect Guesty to a smart pricing tool, you can also push your rates to your channels. 

All in all, the Guesty channel manager is a good choice if you advertise on Airbnb, Vrbo, and And if you want to set smart prices, you need to pay for a dynamic pricing tool like PriceLabs separately. 

Host Tools channel manager

Host Tools has direct integrations with Airbnb, Vrbo, and Houfy. This means that it can synchronize your calendars between those channels, and automatically update your availability on all of them when you block a date or get a booking. 

The real-time availability sync allows you to prevent double bookings without having to constantly keep an eye on your calendars and update them manually. It gives you peace of mind that your calendars are always in perfect sync.

Of course, there’s a multi-calendar where you can see and manage all your reservations, regardless of which booking site they were made on. Plus, there’s a unified inbox where you can keep track of all your guest communication irrespective of channel. 

Calendar synchronization is just one aspect of the Host Tools channel manager. It also allows you to:

  • Send automated messages to guests who book on any of the three connected channels, saving you time on guest communication and reducing the risk of manual error. 
  • Moreover, it lets you set intelligent prices directly in the Host Tools platform and push them to your channels, updating your prices within just a few hours. This way, you can sell your rental at an optimal price, every day of the year.
  • In addition, you can also automate smart locks and reviews for bookings on all three connected channels. This is another way to save time and increase your chances of getting more bookings.

Thanks to the new Houfy integration, Host Tools users can also accept commission-free direct bookings and secure online payments. All you need to do is create a Houfy account, embed your Houfy listing into your vacation rental website, and connect Houfy to Host Tools. Once the connection is live, Host Tools will sync your Houfy calendar with all your other calendars in real-time. 

Furthermore, if you advertise on other channels besides Airbnb, Vrbo, and Houfy, you can add them to Host Tools using an iCal link. This way, your listings on these channels will sync up with those on your connected accounts, too. 

Example of how Host Tools multi-calendar displays

Guesty vs Host Tools: Features

Guesty features

Guesty is a well-rounded application that has a wide range of features for vacation rental hosts. 

Besides channel management, it also offers messaging and review automation, cleaner management, direct bookings support, financial reports, and an Airbnb ranking optimization tool. 

Guesty is also available on iOs and Android, so it’s a good choice for hosts who want to easily manage their listings on-the-go.

Host Tools features

For $8.00 per month, Host Tools has a surprisingly extensive set of features. For example, Host Tools is the first channel manager to support smart locks without requiring you to pay for an additional service. 

Besides the channel manager, which provides direct connections with Airbnb,, Vrbo, and Houfy, Host Tools also lets you:

  • Send automated messages to your guests and cleaners.
  • Automate your reviews and send guests review reminders.
  • Set intelligent prices using a rule-based smart pricing tool.
  • Automate your check-ins by sending your unique access codes to your guests.
  • Accept commission-free direct bookings on your own website. 

Even though Host Tools is an advanced tool with lots of useful features, it doesn’t have a steep learning curve. It also doesn’t have any extra features that are not particularly useful but would make the tool clunky and confusing. 

What it does have are all the essential tools you need to automate your short-term rental business, sit back and watch the bookings pour in.

Guesty vs Host Tools: Customer service

Guesty customer service

Guesty has an FAQ section on their website where you can find answers to the most commonly asked questions. You can also contact Guesty's customer service team if you have any specific queries.

Host Tools customer service

Like I mentioned above, I’m the founder and developer of Host Tools and I’m happy to answer any questions you may have. 

You can reach out directly to me and I’ll walk you through setting up automated messages, getting started with intelligent pricing, connecting your smart locks to Host Tools, or whatever else you need.

You don’t get this kind of personalized attention from just any tool on the market. 

Guesty vs Host Tools: Which is better for your business?

Both Guesty and Host Tools help short-term rental hosts save time and reduce headaches by automating different aspects of their business.

Host Tools is an intuitive, beginner-friendly, affordable tool that any host can start using straight away, no matter how many listings they have. It has no steep learning curve so you don’t need to be tech-savvy to reap the benefits. 

All in all, Host Tools is the best choice for hosts who advertise on Airbnb and Vrbo and want to incorporate direct bookings into their multi-channel distribution strategy by getting listed on Houfy. 

On the other hand, Guesty is more expensive and it’s not ideal for hosts with only one rental. It also lacks a smart lock automation function, which Host Tools has and is incredibly useful for Airbnb self check-ins

Host Tools provides an automated, unified calendar for short-term rental hosts, allowing you to seamlessly list on all major channels. Start your free trial today!

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