By Veronica Stoddart
Increased space. Smart savings. Stylish surroundings. It’s no wonder vacation rentals are surging in popularity, especially among families and friends who want to vacation together. Compared to other types of accommodations, vacation rentals offer distinct benefits that can solve many vacationers’ needs. Here are the top seven reasons to book a vacation rental:
1. Get more for your money
Most travelers choose vacation rental homes for the value they offer. First and foremost, you can save money on the accommodations themselves: the average price per bedroom per day of a vacation rental is only $79.30 vs. the $119.03 average for a hotel. And you can get greater value with the additional space per room that comes with having a house. Second, you can save on meals by eating in, which amounts to an average of 75% savings on food costs.
2. Spread Out
Vacation rentals give you space to spread out. The average number of bedrooms in a vacation rental home is 2.9 and the average size is 1,850 square feet (vs. 325 for a hotel), which is ideal for families or groups of friends who want to stay together. Everyone can find a private spot, while still enjoying the benefits of a comfortable communal room to socialize in and spend time together.
3. Eat in
A Wyndham Vacation Rentals study found that 94% of vacation rental travelers prefer having their own kitchen to avoid the stress of eating out. They point to saving money and the hassles of going to a restaurant as the two main reasons. Eating in saves a significant amount, estimated at $742 on a weeklong stay. Eating out requires having to dress appropriately, making reservations or waiting in line, and finding a type of cuisine that everyone in a group agrees on—all stressful drawbacks. What’s more, families especially value having their own kitchen, so they can snack when they want or eat in shifts when it’s more convenient.
4. Pack less
Vacation rentals come with amenities such as in-unit washers/dryers, which are not only convenient, but also help guests limit the amount of luggage they bring. No need to haul extra clothes on vacation when you can easily wash them. And you’ll also save on checked luggage fees, typically $50 per bag round trip.
5. Live like a local
One of the greatest bonuses of a vacation rental is that it lets guests feel like they belong to the local neighborhood. In fact, a survey by Wyndham Vacation Rentals found 45% of guests like that a rental gives them a glimpse of the local lifestyle and culture in a way that’s unique.
6. Feel at home
With its home-like amenities and comforts, a vacation rental makes you feel right at home. Plus, it can facilitate bringing your pet, which not only approximates a home-like environment, but also saves you costly kennel fees, too. And that’s good for the 53% of pet owners who regularly travel with their dogs or cats, according to TripAdvisor data.
7. Get greater choice
From ski chalets, beach cottages and cabins in the woods, to high-rise condos and sumptuous villas, vacation rental properties offer a wide array of choices and styles. They can be secluded or in the heart of the action. They can be cozy enough for a couple or spacious enough for a group of 12. And they often come with a variety of fun amenities, such as pools, hot tubs, pool tables, entertainment units, expansive decks, fireplaces and more.
Visit Wyndham Vacation Rentals to find a perfect vacation rental
Sources: Wyndham Vacation Rentals data, 2016; Smith Travel Research, Inc., 2016; University of Missouri Cost Comparison Study, 2012; Wyndham Vacation Rentals Summer 2015 Road & Rentals Study, 2015; “Three Rental Sites to Help You Kick Your Hotel Habit,” Smarter Travel, 2012; Why Professionally-Managed Matters Survey conducted for Wyndham Vacation Rentals by Kelton Global, 2015-16.
Freelance travel editor and writer Veronica Stoddart was the former editor in chief of the Travel Media Group at USA TODAY. She has written for nearly two dozen publications and websites.