Back to Appointments Guides

This guide applies to:

  • Basic Edition
  • Plus Edition
  • Pro Edition
  • Business Edition

Introduction

The basic Scheduling Options (Buffers, Per Day Limit, and Notice Required) can take care of the majority of scheduling needs. However, there are lots of special situations where you want to use the Advanced Scheduling Options for your Booking Calendar.

The Advanced Scheduling Options are useful when you want to limit:

  • When time slots are bookable using Availability Window
  • When visitors can access your calendar using Booking Window
  • How far into the future visitors can book time slots using Advance

Potential Use Cases

  • Take interview appointments during a three-day job fair using Availability Window
  • Offer a limited-time offer for a free consultation session using Booking Window
  • Schedule only seven days into the future to avoid making long term-commitments

Enable Advanced Scheduling Options

Simply Schedule Appointments turns these settings off by default. If you want to use them, you’ll just need to toggle them on.

In your WordPress admin, go to Appointments > Settings and toggle on Advanced Scheduling Options.

After enabling, you’ll see new settings options when you edit your Appointment Types under the Scheduling Options tab and the Availability Tab.

Settings screen showing Advanced Scheduling Options

Quick Edit for All the Appointment Types

Another way to edit the Advanced Scheduling Options for each or all the Appointment Type is to click on Edit.

Inside, select Edit Appointment Types. From here you could edit individual Appointment Types by clicking on each drop-down arrow.

Editing Individual Appointment Type Advance Scheduling Options

Or, toggle the Edit Selected Appointment Types Individually Option to edit all the Appointment Types at the same time.

Toggling the Edit All Appointment Type option

Availability Window

Can Only Book Time Slots Inside Availability Window

Under the Availability tab in the Appointment Type Settings, you’ll see a start and end date setting for the Availability Window.

This will let you choose a date range for when to show time slots. A customer looking at your Booking Calendar can only see time slots within these chosen dates.

Screen shot of the Availability Window settings
Appointments will only happen between October 1 and October 31, 2018

You could also just use one of the fields.

Only use the Start Date to show time slots starting at a certain date and time.

Only use the End Date to show time slots up until a certain date and time.

Example

Let’s say that you’ve set the Availability Window between:

  • Start: Wednesday, April 14th @ 12 AM
  • End: Saturday, April 17th @ 12 AM

This would mean any availability you set on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday will be bookable.

Even though we’ve selected availability on Monday and Tuesday, since we’ve added the Availability Window, these time slots will not be available to book.


Advance

In the Scheduling Options tab in the Appointment Type Settings, you’ll see a setting called Advance.

This limits how far into the future customers can book appointments. A customer looking at your Booking Calendar can’t see time slots beyond this chosen time.

Screen shot of the advance feature for controlling how far into the future customers can book appointments
Allow customers to book appointments only 90 days into the future.

Example

Let’s say you’ve set the Advance setting to 3 days (or 72 hours).

This means that any time slots beyond 3 days will not be bookable. The end-user will only be able to see time slots between now and 72 hours from now.


Booking Window

Can Only View the Booking Calendar During the Booking Window

Finally, in the Scheduling Options tab, you’ll see a start and end date setting for a Booking Window.

This limits when customers can access your calendar to book any time slots.

A customer visiting your Booking Calendar outside of this date range can’t book any time slots at all. A message says, “This appointment type cannot be booked at this time”.

Screen shot of the booking window fields
Booking window for when customers can access the booking form to book.

You could also just use one of the fields.

Only use the Start Date to give access to all the time slots starting at a certain date and time.

Only use the End Date to give access to all the time slots up until a certain date and time.

Example

Let’s say you’ve set the Booking Window between:

  • Start: Thursday, April 15th @ 12 AM
  • End: Saturday, April 17th @ 12 AM

This means customers will be able to access all of your available time slots on Thursday the 15th and Friday the 16th.

If they visit the booking calendar any day other than that specific Thursday and Friday, they won’t see any time slots at all.


Booking Window vs Availability Window

The Booking Window limits when customers can access the Booking Calendar to book any time slot. The Availability Window limits when the time slots take place.

Example

You want to make 20 minute photography sessions during a company holiday party.

The holiday party is happening Saturday, December 14 from 4 PM to 8 PM.

Employees of the company can start booking at noon on Wednesday, December 4.

Here’s how you’d set that up:

  • Define a new Appointment Type and name it Company Photo Sessions
  • Then set up the following settings on your Appointment Type:
    • Duration to 20 minutes
    • Availability from 4 PM – 8 PM on Saturdays
    • Availability Window to start on December 14 at midnight and end at midnight on December 15.
    • Booking Window to start on December 4th at noon.

Still stuck?

File a support ticket with our five-star support team to get more help.

File a ticket

  • Please provide any information that will be helpful in helping you get your issue fixed. What have you tried already? What results did you expect? What did you get instead?
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Related Guides