BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (2024)

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (1)

Navigation:

  1. Introduction

  2. Verified User Reviews

  3. Locations

  4. Cost

  5. BringFido's Search Engine

  6. The Booking Process

  7. Customer Service

  8. Pros and Cons

  9. Is BringFido worth it?

  10. FAQs

BringFido

BringFido is the world’s largest brand for pet travel and lifestyle. They’re like TripAdvisor but for pet-owners.

You can use their website, Android app, or iOS app to browse, compare, and book 250,000+ pet-friendly hotels, vacation rentals, restaurants, and more.

Melissa Halliburton founded the company back in 2008 because she was frustrated with the lack of pet policy information on hotel websites. After a year of calling every hotel in America, she launched BringFido — with a mission to make pet travel easier.

And the company takes its mission seriously. They like to show it in subtle ways. At the company office, BringFido has a “Bring Your Dog to Work Day”, which says a lot about how they value dog people.

In fact, on their Jobs page, they mention hiring dog people specifically, so it’s safe to say that whoever’s serving you can relate to the gripes of a pet owner who just wants to hang out somewhere nice with Fido.

Many people use BringFido as a search engine/information source for pet-friendly locations and pet advice, but it’s important to note that you can book on BringFido as well — at no additional cost.

That’s right. No booking fees. And that’s just one of the benefits.

To learn how you can make your pet travels easier, less stressful, and more fun, keep reading until the end.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (2)

Planning a trip with a pooch without the right resources can leave any dog owner lost, overwhelmed, and discouraged.

A lot of places just don’t bother disclosing pet policies on their websites, which means you have to call them directly to find out — and that takes a lot of energy.

BringFido removes that hurdle.

With BringFido, you no longer have to call every location to ask if it’s fine to bring Fido. BringFido tells you everything you need to know — pet fees, number limits, size limits, types of dogs allowed — you name it, BringFido knows it.

In this BringFido review, we’ll explore every aspect of the website, both internal and external. We’ll look at verified user reviews, cost, features, accessibility, benefits, and more.

Let’s get started.

Verified User Reviews for BringFido

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (3)

Jump to: Apple Store Reviews | Google Play Store Reviews | Trustpilot Reviews

To kick off this review, let’s begin with some unbiased, external information — let’s hear what other people have to say about BringFido. To do that, we’ll check out some of BringFido’s reviews from verified users.

For context, BringFido has 1,000,000+ users all over the world. And while the website doesn’t have a Testimonials page for us to view, there are many reviews on other reputable platforms.

Today, we’ll look at:

  • Apple Store Reviews

  • Google Play Store Reviews

  • Trustpilot Reviews

Apple Store Reviews

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BringFido’s Apple Store app has an amazingly high rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars across 11,900+ ratings.

A rating like that is no joke, especially when considering how high the number of reviews is.

5-star ratings comprise 92% of all ratings on BringFido’s iOS app and 4-star ratings comprise 6%. That means only 2% of ratings are less than positive.

Common praises:

  • Superb customer service. Reps go out of their way to find users pet-friendly rooms with nice views. When booking conflicts pop up, reps are quick to notify the user before confirming their reservation.

  • Accurate & updated information. BringFido calls all of the locations on their site to make sure they’re pet-friendly. Locations that aren’t actually pet-friendly barely ever slip past undetected.

  • User-friendly. The app’s interface is clean and runs smoothly. There is no visual clutter, which makes it easy on the eyes.

  • Great for spontaneous trips. The app is much easier to use than the website but doesn’t compromise functionality. This makes it great for spontaneous trips when all you have is your phone and not your computer.

Common complaints:

  • Limited information in smaller towns. The information in big cities is more complete and is less so in smaller towns. Definitely still useful but needs more work when it comes to smaller towns.

  • Can’t review unlisted locations. You can leave reviews on any place that’s registered in their directory. But if it’s not there, you can’t review it.

Google Play Store Reviews

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BringFido’s Google Play Store app has a decently high rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars across 250+ ratings.

The total number of ratings is a bit low considering the app has 100,000+ installs already. But the fact that it has so many installs says a lot.

4.4 is a sizeable jump from 4.9, and it’s obvious how much more prevalent low-star ratings are on the Android app. Fortunately, the lower-star ratings (1-star & 2-star) comprise only 10% of all ratings.

The majority of Android app users (84%) are satisfied with BringFido.

Common praises:

  • Accurate descriptions of services and fees. BringFido checks in regularly with hotels to confirm and update policies, so it’s great for planning trips.

  • Handy and quick to use. You can literally book a room while stuck in traffic. It’s that easy.

Common complaints:

  • Laggy on some devices. This point is very user-dependent since every device is different. But lag on the Android app is a common complaint.

  • Inaccurate sometimes. For some reason, the Android app sometimes shows locations which aren’t actually pet-friendly. But BringFido has said before that they continuously confirm and update policies for all listings.

Trustpilot Reviews

They only put up their Trustpilot profile in October of 2020, so there aren’t many reviews. But things are looking good so far.

Right now, BringFido has an average rating of 4.4 stars out of 5, earning them the Excellent rating on Trustpilot, which is the highest rating a company can get.

Common praises:

  • Very personal, unlike other booking services. Customer service does their best to fix issues like incorrect booking information or cancellations.

  • Great resource for all things dog-related. BringFido’s website is chock-full of pet-related resources. View them all for free.

  • Accurate information for each location. The recommendations are always spot on.

Common complaints:

  • None so far.

Right now, it’s hard to judge the validity of their current rating on Trustpilot since the number of reviews is still too small.

But as more and more people leave reviews, their rating will eventually stabilize into one that’s closer to the actual customer perception.

So far, however, it seems that the “excellent” rating is realistic enough. BringFido’s ratings on the Apple Store and Google Play Store seem to be enough evidence.

BringFido Locations

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BringFido is available across all 50 states and worldwide, with over 250,000 pet-friendly destinations in 100+ countries.

The app is a bit limited in other countries, but you’re guaranteed to find at least 1 pet-friendly hotel listing in most areas of any country, especially in urban areas.

The app is more useful if you’re from a Western country like the US, Canada, or Australia.

You can try your luck with the app if you’re from somewhere else, and you’ll still get some decent results, but it’ll be very limited. You’d be better off calling the property and asking them about their pet policies.

BringFido Cost

BringFido is absolutely free.

Whether you just want to do pet-related research or make a reservation, BringFido costs you nothing. Yep — zero dollars.

It’s definitely unusual to see a vacation rental service that doesn’t charge a fee for every booking, no matter how small. But BringFido’s customer-centric strategy works great for everyone involved.

What BringFido does is, instead of charging you for every booking you make through them, they charge the property a referral commission and make money from that.

The end result? You pay absolutely nothing to use their service.

BringFido's Search Engine

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The reason BringFido’s such a valuable app is because you can use it to look up hundreds of pet-friendly destinations near you and across the world.

BringFido’s search engine shows you pet-friendly:

In any one location, you’ll find dozens of pet-friendly destinations. The BringFido team calls each and every one of them to confirm their pet policies and verifies them before listing.

Simplifying your search for pet-friendly.

To start browsing pet-friendly locations, just go on the website, type in your desired destination, and click Fetch.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (9)

On the next page, you’ll see all the listings in that destination, along with details of each one, including price, pet policies, rating, and whether there’s a discount or not.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (10)

Another way to browse that makes it easier to find nearby listings is by clicking on View Results on Map.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (11)

This takes you to a map widget which lets you see all the listings in an area. From there, you can decide based on the location and find a listing that’s in your budget.

Click a price bubble to learn more about that listing.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (12)

You can also refine your search results by using the various search features.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (13)

On the top portion of the search widget are your Search Filters.

There, you can:

  • Enter a different Destination

  • Edit your Booking Dates

  • Specify your Booking Details (number of rooms, people, and pets)

  • Select a Property Type (e.g., Hotels, Vacation Rentals, etc.)

  • Select your desired Pet Policies (e.g., No pet fee, Large dogs allowed, etc.)

  • Filter by Rating or Price

These search filters should be enough to find you suitable listings for you and your pet.

On the right side of the map widget, you can select which Types of Listings you’d like to see. You can check all of them to see every pet-friendly listing near you, or just one of them to narrow down your search.

And on the leftmost side of the screen, you’ll see a Search this area button that lets you see updated listings whenever you move the map.

A reliable, community-built information source.

One awesome thing about BringFido’s search engine is that it’s partly built by the community.

There are options to Post a Business, Write a Review, and Share a Photo of destinations you’ve been to.

BringFido does their part in finding pet-friendly businesses, but this feature helps make everything more interactive and trustworthy. Upon viewing the details page of any destination, you’ll also see the reviews that other people have left on a scale of 1 to 5 bones.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (14)

You can also see the destination’s rating on TripAdvisor for some extra assurance.

My thoughts on BringFido’s search engine.

Honestly, the filters could be more specific. Other vacation rental websites/apps have already done it before.

BringFido’s search filters are great for finding pet-friendly locations, but without filters for things like Amenities, Cancellation Policies, etc., it can make browsing a bit tedious.

But the point of BringFido is to help you find pet-friendly locations, and that is what it’s good at.

Both BringFido and members of the community work together to update the directory, so in addition to being a useful source of pet-friendly info — it’s also reliable.

The Booking Process

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (15)

Jump to: Browsing | Booking | Payment

A lot of people use BringFido because of the search engine and content library, since both provide a lot of value. But it’s important to know that BringFido offers booking services as well.

In fact, booking is their main service — everything else is just a bonus. The best part is that they don’t charge you anything to book through them.

They instead charge a referral commission to the destination, which means there’s really no reason not to book through BringFido. You literally spend nothing to use their services.

In addition to offering to help you plan your trips, BringFido also offers constant customer support if you ever need information about a certain area.

Here, I’ll walk you through BringFido’s booking process to show you what you can expect.

Browsing

All listings show you the following:

  • Photos of the property

  • Total user rating (on a scale of 1 to 5 bones)

  • Rate comparisons between BringFido & other booking platforms

  • Available rooms, their policies, and prices

  • Additional details (description, amenities

  • Verified user reviews

Everything’s clean and straightforward.

The Description tells you some of the hotel’s history, its features, and what you can expect to find in the area. Since these descriptions are written by the properties themselves, clarity and comprehensiveness can vary.

You’ll also see a list of Amenities which tells you whether the hotel has things like Air Conditioning, WiFi, TV, etc.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (16)

At the very bottom of any listing is a list of verified user Reviews. This includes written reviews, the BringFido Guest Rating, and the TripAdvisor Traveler Rating.

I recommend sticking to a strict rule of booking only locations with more than 4 reviews and a decent average rating of 4+ stars.

Otherwise, if you have no other options, do your research so you can have the best possible stay.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (17)

Booking

Once you’ve found a property you like, it’s time to select a room.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (18)

You’ll see a list of Available Rooms on any property listing page, along with their policies and prices. You can also find out more about the room by clicking Room Details.

Once you’ve decided on a room, click Select.

Payment

On the next page, you’ll see the Total for your booking, including Hotel Taxes & Fees as well as the Booking Fee, which, thanks to BringFido, is always $0.00.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (19)

BringFido accepts the following Payment Methods:

  • Visa

  • Mastercard

  • American Express

It doesn’t look like BringFido accepts PayPal or other payment methods at the moment.

Once you’re done filling out the form, press Complete Booking to finalize your reservation.

Customer Service

Jump to: Canine Concierge Team | Cancellations | User Reviews

  • Call: 1-877-411-3436

  • Email: help@bringfido.com

  • Mailing address: BringFido, PO Box 1489, Travelers Rest, SC 29690

  • Help Center

The majority of users only have good things to say about BringFido’s customer service. It seems that reps truly do go out of their way to improve the customer experience.

Perhaps it’s because BringFido employees are also dog people, which helps them relate more with the customer. In any case, their focus on customer satisfaction has not gone unnoticed.

Canine Concierge Team

BringFido’s Canine Concierge Team exists in their call center. These people help you find a hotel that fits your needs, answer questions about specific hotels or locations, and can also assist in making pet-friendly hotel bookings.

Some people have gone on vacations planned entirely by the Canine Concierge Team. It’s what a lot of people like BringFido for.

If you’ve ever got too much on your plate, the Canine Concierge team will do the leg work for you.

Plus, if anything goes wrong with your booking, or you ever need any help waiving certain limits, these guys have got your back.

Cancellations

If something comes up and you have to cancel your hotel booking, BringFido can help simplify the cancellation process.

The keyword here is “help”. BringFido is merely a middleman between you and the hotel you’re booking, which means the two of you are subject to the hotel’s individually-set cancellation policy.

If the hotel says you can’t cancel, you can’t cancel. But having BringFido to back you up is a nice fallback.

Once you let them know about your issue, they’ll take care of the cancellation for you.

To cancel a reservation, just click this link and fill out the form.

User Reviews

Let’s take a look at some of the praises and complaints commonly mentioned by verified BringFido users.

Common praises for customer service:

  • Responsive. To write this review, I had to message BringFido a few times. I did so through live chat on their Facebook page. It only took them a few hours to come up with detailed, helpful responses, which is fast considering I messaged them after work hours.

  • Helpful. Reps make a special effort to resolve issues concerning anything from incorrect booking information to cancellations. On other booking services, users are often victims of fine print. If the handbook says it’s not allowed, it’s not allowed. But it seems BringFido is the opposite. As long as yours is a reasonable request, their customer service reps will help you out.

  • Considerate. If you space out and make a reservation for the wrong dates, BringFido’s customer service is considerate enough to adjust your reservation for you.

  • They’ll plan your trip with you. If you’re on the road with a pack of pesky pups, it takes a lot of energy to book the right location. Fortunately, if you’ve ever got too much on your plate, BringFido’s customer service reps are always available to help you find the best accommodations.

Common complaints about customer service:

  • Honestly, none. I really did try to look for negative reviews about customer service, but the most recent negative reviews are about app bugs and missing features. The last complaint I saw about customer service was a refund issue, and that was way back in 2018.

Pros and Cons of BringFido

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (20)

Pros

No registration needed.

You don’t have to sign up to use the app. Just download to instantly start browsing pet-friendly destinations near you. If you like the app, registering for an account lets you book, save, and write reviews your favorite destinations. Completely optional.

Costs absolutely nothing

A bit unusual for a vacation rental service, but BringFido charges you absolutely nothing to book through them. Instead of charging you small fees for every booking you make, they just charge the destination a referral commission and make money through them. Their content library is free as well. If you like BringFido and want to support them, book through them.

Pet-friendly guarantee

Each time you book a hotel through BringFido, you enjoy the benefit of their Pet Friendly Guarantee. What this means is that BringFido will do their best to work with the hotel to accommodate you and your pet in a pet-friendly room. You will also not be charged a pet fee higher than the one you saw on BringFido. If any of these conditions are not met, BringFido will help you sort it out and make sure you’re compensated fairly. Learn more.

Canine Concierge Team

When you book through BringFido, the Canine Concierge Team does all the leg work for you. They’re the ones who enforce the Pet-Friendly Guarantee mentioned above. They call the hotel and make sure nothing goes wrong with your reservation and even help you out with any special requests (like waiving limits for weight, number, type of animal, etc.).

Easier cancellations

Regarding cancellations, BringFido doesn’t promise anything. Because they can’t. Cancellations depend entirely on the cancellation policy of the hotel you book. But they’re more than willing to help you cancel your reservation if you made it through BringFido. Just click this link and fill out the Cancel Reservation form.

Useful search filters

In addition to letting you filter by property type, you can also filter according to Pet Policy (e.g., No Pet Fee, Low Pet Fee ($25 or less), Large Dogs Allowed (>50 lbs), etc.). This makes the search process super quick and easy.

Cons

Information outside the Western world is limited

After scanning BringFido’s map of the world and checking countries I’ve never even heard of, it seems BringFido just isn’t as useful in places outside the Western world. It’s definitely still a good app, and you can still find pet-friendly hotels, but other property types are just rarer to see on the app outside of Western nations.

Can’t review unregistered locations

There’s a handy Write a Review feature that lets you write reviews for destinations you’ve visited so you can tell other people about them. You enter a place/event name into a field, and if it’s registered in their directory, you can review it. Unfortunately, you can’t review anything that’s not in their directory. To go around this, you need to Post the Business first so the team can look it up. Once they’ve registered the location, you can review it then.

Can only include up to 8 people and 4 pets

For some reason, the app only lets you specify up to 8 people and 4 pets in your booking. It’s not a huge dealbreaker since not many people are going to exceed those limits, but it’s a bummer for people who have more than 4 pets. If you really need to, you can sort this out with customer service so they can help waive the limits for you.

Inactive community forum

BringFido has their own Dog Travel Forum where you can share and discuss travel experiences, tips, and recommendations with other dog-loving travelers worldwide. Unfortunately, people stopped using the forum somewhere in 2016.

Search filters can be improved

BringFido’s search filters are great for finding pet-friendly stuff, but when it comes to filtering for things like Amenities and Cancellation Policies, it falls a bit short.

BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (21)

Is BringFido worth it?

Yes. There is literally no reason not to use BringFido. It checks all the boxes!

  • High ratings (4.4+/5.0)

  • Free

  • Available in all 50 states

  • Great customer service

  • Easy-to-use

  • Comprehensive content library

If you travel a lot with your pet (or you’d like to start!), then BringFido is the app for you. It doesn’t matter what type of pet you have, or even how many. Whatever your case, you will find a use for BringFido.

It’s the best app to have when you’re out with a pet. It’s helpful, it’s safe, and it’s free. You can install BringFido on both iOS and Android and start looking for pet-friendly locations immediately.

BringFido FAQs

Frequently asked questions about BringFido.

What is BringFido?

BringFido is a company that helps you find, compare, book, and review various pet-friendly locations, events, and activities. The app is available for both iOS and Android. You can use their website as well to save up on storage space.

Is the information on BringFido accurate?

The information on BringFido is accurate. BringFido calls each location before listing it on their app/website. If you have something to say about a location, you can share it here.

Where can I eat and bring my dog?

A lot of establishments have policies that only allow some dogs, and not others. This is because of limits on weight or size. Some restaurants will let you bring your dog inside while some will only let them stay as far as the patio. To make sure, check the location on BringFido for a free, detailed list of their pet policies.

Is In-N-Out Burger dog-friendly?

According to BringFido, many of In-N-Out Burger’s locations are pet-friendly. Look the exact location up on BringFido to find out for sure.

What hotel chains allow dogs for free?

Many hotel chains allow dogs for free, like Kimpton and Aloft, but not all of them. Some chains will allow dogs but will ask for a pet fee, which usually ranges from $15 to $100, depending on the type, size, and number of dogs. Here’s a list of the ones that do. If you can’t find your hotel on the list, check BringFido to find out your hotel’s pet policies.

Can I leave my dog alone in a hotel room?

Sometimes. Some hotels have policies against leaving your pet unattended, so make sure you aren’t breaking any rules. And make sure you give your dog the time to acclimate to your hotel room. If you leave them unattended too soon in such an unfamiliar place, they could freak out.

How many dogs can stay in a hotel room?

The number limit for pets varies between each hotel. For most hotels, 2 dogs per room seems to be the maximum. Sometimes, if you have no other choice, you can talk to the hotel people and see if you can waive the number limit. If you use BringFido for your hotel booking, their Canine Concierge Team can do the talking for you.

What percentage of hotels are pet friendly?

According to the 2016 survey by the American Hotel & Lodging Association, 75% of luxury, midscale, and economy hotels now allow pets.

Exsplore Team

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BringFido Review - Free Pet-Friendly Booking Service [Full Breakdown] | EXSPLORE (2024)

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