Skip to main content

In today’s hospitality industry, operators always look for tools to save time, drive revenue, and enhance guest experience. One of the areas that can be significantly improved with technology is communication. This is why guest messaging and communication platforms for hospitality are on the rise.

Searching for solutions, available for professional property managers, you will find Enso Connect and Akia. These two software stand out for their innovative approaches to communication in the hotel and short-term rental space. While both companies talk about guest engagement and automated guest journeys, there are significant differences between their capabilities and offerings. If you’re seeking the right platform to manage messaging in your short-term rentals, we’ve compared these two options for you. Three main differences between Enso Connect and Akia lie in their streamlined guest journey approach, inbox functionality, and AI capabilities.

Akia VS Enso Connect: Top Three Differences

– Enso Connect offers a unified “single-link” approach for the entire guest journey, while Akia uses separate “mini-apps” for different stages.

– While Akia groups messages within dedicated threads, Enso Connect presents all communication types chronologically in one inbox for better context.

–  Enso Connect’s AI integration leverages advanced language models like ChatGPT to provide customizable, information-rich responses. This goes beyond Akia’s preset automated FAQ responses based on confidence ratings.

Dive into our in-depth comparison of features, pricing and other data points, designed to help you make an informed decision.

Product Overview and Key Features: Akia  

Akia offers a cloud-based text messaging platform designed to facilitate direct communication, service recovery, and review management for hotels. 

Their primary focus is on enabling direct communication between hotel staff and guests, leveraging the effectiveness of text messaging. Akia provides contactless communication tools, including service recovery and review management to streamline operations and enhance the guest experience. Key features include contactless check-in, communication inbox, automated message handling tailored to guest location, and upselling tools.

Akia Mini Apps offer a range of tools to automate communication, streamline workflows, and personalize guest experiences. Here are the main features, presented by the mini apps, offered by Akia software: 

Communication & Automation

  • Scheduled Journey: Automated messages throughout the stay.
  • Automatic Responder: Pre-written responses to common questions.
  • Personalized Messaging: Use guest data to tailor communication. 
  • Task Automation: Automate post-checkout tasks like automatic review requests or thank you messages.

Information & Services

  • Arrival Guide: Customizable digital guidebooks.
  • Food Menus: Digital menus with easy ordering and customization options
  • Registration Cards:Guest verification requests to capture guest IDs, signatures, and deposits remotely. 
  • Pet Waiver: A pet policy waiver 

Akia’s product, functionality, features, and aesthetics are geared towards standardized hotel operations, offering amenities like food menus and arrival guides. In contrast, vacation rental operators require tailored upsells and condition-based automations to cater to the unique nature of each property. While traditional hotels follow more uniform procedures due to their centralized location, short-term rentals demand a higher level of customization. They need to streamline operations according to their specific business needs. Akia’s most expensive plan limits customization to just 10 triggers, which may not suffice for vacation rental businesses seeking granular control over their processes.

Product Overview and Key Features: Enso Connect

Enso Connect is an AI-powered guest experience platform for vacation rentals, boutique hotels and serviced apartments. The platform offers a range of tools and features, allowing to personalize and monetize interactions throughout the guest journey. 

Alongside AI-driven unified messaging, Enso Connect offers a Boarding Pass guest app, customized upsells, smart automation, CRM, and more. 

Enso Connect’s key features include:

  • Unified inbox for managing email, SMS, WhatsApp messages, and Airbnb correspondence
  • EnsoAI, powered by integration with ChatGPT, unlocks advanced language capabilities within the platform
  • Customizable upsell and in-app payment options for additional revenue streams
  • Built-in guest verification services through partnerships with safety providers like Autohost and Superhog
  • Ability to create automated workflows and set conditions based on booking sources or other factors
  • Hospitality CRM hub, allowing to centralize guest data and personalize interactions. 

What’s Unique About Enso Connect? 

Two key characteristics differentiate Enso Connect from other solutions: 

– Flexibility and granular control over functionality. This allows hospitality businesses to fine-tune processes according to their unique requirements.

– The connectivity approach. Like Zapier of hospitality, the platform is connecting software that hospitality operators love and use, like Autohost or Superhog. Thanks to its high quality integrations with those partners, the platform allows integrating the services into one smooth and streamlined guest journey, without a need for guests to jump between different links or the team to log into many applications. 

Examples of Enso Connect’s configurability: 

These mini demos are just a couple of examples that showcase tailored automation solutions for unique hospitality business need.

Advanced verification procedures, configured by channel, property type, guest type and more.

Crunching unexpected vacation rental scenarios with smart automations

Upsell conditions to present the right offer at the right time

Working with two property management software providers

Akia VS Enso Connect: Feature Comparison

Akia and Enso Connect have some similar features for enhancing guest experience and streamlining operations for hospitality professionals. Both automate communication throughout the guest journey, offer a unified inbox and a guest app, capture security deposits and facilitate upsells. Both platforms let short-term rental hosts pre-register guests and simplify check-in. They also customize data collection before check-in, collect IDs, and use Stripe for transactions. Both software have a direct integration with Airbnb, have a capability to automate review requests based on guest sentiment and offer a mobile app for users. 

Despite these similarities, a deeper dive into specific features shows significant differences between the tech solutions:  

Unified inbox 

Akia’s approach to a unified inbox differs from the conventional chronological view. Instead of displaying all communication threads in a single chronological order, Akia groups messages by channel (e.g., email, SMS, Airbnb). This means users need to open each channel separately to view the respective messages, which are ordered by the channel rather than chronological order across all channels. Akia positions this approach as a way for businesses to “own their guests” by separating pre-booking communication (typically email) from post-booking interactions (often SMS). While this method may appeal to some, it deviates from the traditional unified inbox experience where all messages are displayed in a single chronological feed, regardless of the channel.

Akia VS Enso Connect Messaging Inbox
Enso Connect VS Akia Messaging Inbox

Guest app 

One of the biggest differences between Akia and Enso Connect is their approach to guest interaction. Akia uses mini-apps to provide custom and dynamic capabilities at different steps of the guest journey through various links. Whereas Enso Connect uses a single Boarding Pass link that guests will use throughout their entire journey. 

With Enso Connect’s Boarding Pass V3, the guest portal has become a state-of-the-art engagement and e-commerce tool for hospitality operators. The web-app combines intuitive design, advanced branding capabilities, and seamless integrations to offer an unmatched user experience.

Akia vs Enso Guest app
Enso Connect VS Akia Guest app

AI capabilities 

Akia and Enso Connect. Akia uses AI capabilities to automate responses to frequently asked questions (FAQs), with responses triggered based on a “confidence” rating. However multiple users have reported issues with this setup. In contrast, EnsoAI takes a more comprehensive approach by not only leveraging information within the Enso platform but also from external sources. This enables our AI to provide more informed responses that can be further customized before sending, ensuring a personalized touch in customer interactions. Additionally, EnsoAI offers the ability to prompt responses, similar to the functionality you’d find in a platform like ChatGPT, enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of customer support.

Akia vs Enso - AI Messaging
Enso Connect VS Akia - AI Messaging

Third party and smart lock integrations 

When using multiple third-party tools alongside Akia, the lack of seamless integration creates manual overhead for customers. This issue was highlighted by a customer moving from Akia to Enso Connect. They had to perform manual work for every new booking due to the lack of automation between Akia and their other tools. Enso Connect solves this issue by offering white labeling and quality integrations and automation across various third-party hospitality tech tools.

UX and Interface

There are a couple of significant differences between user experience and user interface in Enso Connect and Akia. 

The distinct differences are in messaging and guest experience. Akia’s messaging system groups communications by type (SMS, email, WhatsApp, etc.), which can lead to loss of context, or require users to click through each group to view messages. In contrast, Enso presents all messages in chronological order within a single thread, providing a more seamless and coherent view of guest interactions. 

Enso Connect’s approach to streamlining the guest experience differs from Akia’s. Enso Connect uses a single Boarding Pass link that guests use throughout their entire journey. This unified experience simplifies navigation and interaction for guests which enhances the overall experience. Akia uses “mini-apps,” which involve different links at various steps of the guest journey. This can create a fragmented experience, requiring guests to manage multiple links at different stages. 

Integration Capabilities 

Enso’s unique vision of connecting vs ripping and replacing software, allows it to be the Zapier of hospitality. These users can create seamless journeys, without a need to log into many apps or send many links to guests. For Akia, connecting three different types of software is not something that works smoothly.  

Pricing and Scalability

Enso Connect is a premium product with a plethora of features and capabilities, designed to streamline operations and drive revenue. The unmatched customization, allowing operators to become significantly efficient and revenue-generating tools make it a worthwhile investment for scaling businesses. Check the Enso Connect’s pricing here

For those looking for a “budget” alternative and less customization, Akia is a viable option with its basic packages and no SMS charges. 

The average ROI for Enso Connect customers is 4.7, highlighting its premium value despite higher costs. Watch a case study, where the users explain how Enso Connect covers the software costs and brings new revenue.  

Both Akia and Enso Connect lower their rates when the number of listings increases. They employ tiered pricing, based on the size of the property manager, determined by the number of listings they manage. This approach ensures that pricing scales according to the needs and scope of the property management operations. It provides flexibility for growth and accommodates varying business sizes. Both platforms offer fair and scalable pricing that cater to the specific requirements of property managers. Whether you manage a handful of listings or operate on a larger scale, you’ll find an offer that fits you. 

Customer support and training 

Enso Connect prioritizes providing attentive, human-centric support and has a swift onboarding process with at least two sessions with the team. Most of the customer feedback is praising onboarding and the support team members. Both Akia and Enso Connect charge an onboarding fee. 


Akia predominantly caters to traditional hotels, tailoring its features to meet the specific needs of this sector. Enso Connect serves vacation rentals, boutique hotels and serviced apartments, optimizing its functionalities for these business models. 

For scaling short-term rental businesses, using multiple channels for guest communication, Enso Connect’s unified inbox is a no brainer. It is more convenient and organized, empowering small teams to respond quickly with the AI and priority inbox functionality. In addition, a single-link guest portal that is seamlessly navigating guests throughout their entire journey provides a better guest experience. This also increases guest engagement with the app, driving higher upsell conversion and reducing questions asked.

Operators using third-party guest verification and smart locks appreciate Enso Connect’s seamless integration of all these services into a simple unified interface.

See how Enso Connect can take your guest communication to the next level

WordPress Lightbox