There seems to be a growing interest in alternative accommodation and especially what is now being called the Vacation Rentals market. That terms was made popular by Flipkey and then became an established category on TripAdvisor when they took over FlipKey. All the while sites like HomeAway, Vacation Rentals By Owner (VRBO) and dozens of villa rentals, and apartments for rent sites were competing for market share. Airbnb created a storm with its aggressive advertising and positioning. Now the German company HomeToGo, a metasearch engine for vacation rentals, is launching its USA service.
Part of the reason that vacation rentals are more attractive is the gradual shift away from cookie-cutter holiday to the do it yourself mentality of the Independent minded Traveller. This market has been around for ages but its more in vogue today as the travel market matures. It is also how the new millennials like to travel.
Many resorts are gearing up to cater exclusive to these travelers. An example is St. Lucia’s Ocean View Villa resort ; Poinsettia. Their website featuring private villa apartments for rent in St. Lucia has several pages dedicated to Independent travel and helpful tips for those who are looking for the authentic Caribbean holiday experience away from the crowds.
In the article HomeToGo points out that “Currently served by large home-share companies, the US online travel industry is fragmented in regards to vacation rentals with thousands of companies in the US alone. Searching and comparing vacation rentals can be time-consuming and confusing due to overlapping inventory and booking fees.
Tripping CEO Jen O’Neal says that the recent merger of HowmeAway with Expedia is good for business: “This is great news for HomeAway, Expedia, and the industry as a whole. It shows that vacation rentals are becoming increasingly mainstream and that OTAs need to have a solid stake in VR to remain competitive.”
The Meta-booking now established in hotel search, and especially on TripAdvisor, is now being adapted to vacation rentals. This, O’Neal adds that “Tripping will facilitate around one million meta-bookings by next year”. Tey are not alone: – There is lots of competion and many new entries such as the Vacatia with its resort rental marketplace which raised $8.8 million to launch.
See full report on tnooz: Metasearch for vacation rentals gains momentum