June 22, 2022
Vacation rental booking rates are higher than ever. Compared to last year’s spring season, US demand for unique places to stay has risen by 49%. Of course, considering the major hit travel took last year as it struggled to recover from global events, this may not seem significant. But this rise in bookings is still 26% higher than in 2019 when travel was at its peak.
The success of vacation rentals during this time, when many other industries struggled to stay afloat, will likely encourage a surge of new lodging providers looking to make the most of a fantastic opportunity. So, although we are currently witnessing record-breaking occupancy levels, bookings will likely decline as supply grows.
With this in mind, those wanting to make the most of vacation rental popularity this season should focus on optimizing their property’s appeal to potential customers. In order to do this, let’s consider these key questions: what are guests looking for this spring? And how can these expectations be met?
People want to reconnect and spend quality time with their loved ones after years apart. 55% of Americans plan to visit family and friends on their trips, and this sentiment is reflected globally with similar results in the UK, Australia, and Singapore.
Lodging providers can build on this trend and create spaces for large groups and extended families in their vacation rentals. To meet these expectations, provide a home away from home where guests can relax and reconnect in a cozy environment with plenty of comfortable amenities.
Trends also suggest guests want a deeper connection with their destination and desire to immerse themselves in its natural environment. They’ll be looking for rental providers with knowledgeable local insights and recommendations. Offer this connection to guests by establishing partnerships in the community with tour and attraction providers.
Tourism has moved on, and suppliers need to meet the new demands of guests, who now often identify themselves as travelers. Guests seek new experiences. As shown by Tripadvisor’s report, 73% of Americans think it’s important to have new experiences, as well as to visit new places, meet new people, and try new foods.
Two-thirds placed high importance on learning the culture and history of the destination, which may be the reason for global interest in guided cultural activities increasing.
Help adventurous guests explore a destination by making it easy for them to plan their dream trip with in-room technology. Voice assist devices, such as virtual concierge SmartHost, enable guests to find activities that suit them from the comfort of the vacation rental.
They’ll have access to local opportunities they may have otherwise missed out on, allowing them to experience the location authentically and create those unforgettable memories. Plus, when signed up to the Xplorie program, you can offer guests a free pass to an attraction for every day of their stay – a perk sure to attract potential guests, especially families, and large groups.
Despite travel levels skyrocketing, some areas have yet to fully return to the old normal. For example, international travel will remain on the back burner this year as many choose domestic trips instead.
This may be a contributing factor to the predicted return of urban travel this season. According to The New York Times “cities are back” since data from January revealed an 80% increase in bookings for Paris, London, and New York.
Attractions are hugely popular in cities, especially those with globally known monuments and sight-seeing activities. Use this demand to your advantage and appeal to guests who are seeking more value for their money by adding these opportunities to room packages.
- Guests will be traveling in large groups to reconnect with family and friends.
- Nature, culture, and authenticity are top priorities for travelers this spring.
- Domestic travel will continue to thrive as city breaks make a triumphant comeback.
What you can offer beyond the walls of your vacation rental is just as important as what you offer within it. Guest experience is shaped through every element of their trip, from where they sleep at night to how they spend their days.
Trends show travelers seek new experiences, city sights, and time with their loved ones. So, offer them a fully rounded package with dinner recommendations, fantastic day trips, spacious living areas, and in-room tech to help guests create the most memorable vacation.
Xplorie is the leading platform in guest acquisition and retention solutions for leisure lodging providers. Since 1996, Xplorie has leveraged local and complementary activities to help lodging providers differentiate their properties, improve guest loyalty and increase top-line revenue. To learn more about how Xplorie enables lodging providers to deliver an unforgettable vacation experience to guests, visit xplorie.com/partner.