How to book a vacation rental
From coast to coast, Americans are getting ready to book summer vacations. Don't pay premium prices for a hotel — try a vacation rental instead.
Vacation rentals offer a travel lifestyle unlike any other, providing unmatched space, amenities, services and privacy. In fact, the customizable vacation possibilities are endless, according to experts from the official resource for vacation rental travel information, Discover Vacation Homes. Before you book your home, consider six important questions.
Is there a rental agreement?
Review the terms and conditions carefully. If in doubt, check with the state and local municipality to confirm whether the manager or owner has a business license and is paying lodging taxes.
What if I have questions during my stay?
Established companies will offer an emergency guest services contact whom guests can call 24 hours a day, seven days a week for questions, maintenance issues and more.
How do I know if I'm getting reliable services and facilities?
Look for third-party endorsements on vacation rental websites, including memberships with industry associations like the Vacation Rental Managers' Association, Better Business Bureau (BBB) and local tourism or property management groups. You can also request and evaluate past guest reviews, comments and references.
How do I make a reservation?
You should be offered a secure and standardized phone and/or internet reservation system with the ability to use major credit cards. Security deposits can also be expected.
Should I go with a pro?
Choose a professionally managed vacation rental to ensure you get consistent hospitality services and quality assurance standards — as well as professionally cleaned and managed homes, ongoing and objective inspections and concierge-type services that provide destination expert advice. Discover Vacation Homes offers a list of North America's most reputable companies, which subscribe to a code of ethics and practices in the management and renting of vacation properties.
What are the perks?
While many guests today expect to find "home away from home" amenities like bath toiletries, fresh linens, personal concierges or even options for child care, additional perks might include free bicycles, private pools, in-home movie theaters with DVD rentals or access to a fitness center with an indoor water park.