Holiday rentals have completely transformed the travel industry, giving vacationers a wider choice of properties to choose from when they venture away from home. Unlike hotels with their boxy rooms and expensive suites, holiday rentals come in a huge range of shapes and forms that suit everyone from solo business travelers and couples to those holidaying with the extended family in tow.
On holiday rental sites such as rentola.com, there are myriad options when it comes to finding the perfect place to stay. Whether you’re looking for a long weekend away with your loved one, a school holiday escape with the family, or a short-term retreat to inspire your creative energies, this article has you covered.
1. Select your destination and location carefully
Before you can start looking for a holiday rental, you need to decide where you want to travel to. Based on your destination, take some time to consider the location within that destination, as this can make a big difference to your overall stay.
If you’re visiting a city, perhaps you want to be in the heart of all the action with sightseeing attractions within walking distance. Or maybe you prefer a more “local” experience in the suburbs, with neighborhood cafes outside your front door. For coastal or country escapes, it might be peace and quiet that you are seeking, with noisy highways far away.
When selecting your destination and location, consider the transport connections that are available to you and how convenient these are depending on what you plan to do. In some instances, renting a car may be necessary to get around, so factor this into your decision. In other cases, it could be difficult to find secure parking nearby and public transport may be a more suitable option.
2. Differentiate your “needs” from your “wants”
With your preferred destination and location established, it’s time to whittle down your holiday rental choices by determining your “needs” or “must-haves”. This may be a certain number of bedrooms to accommodate your family and friends or it might be a swimming pool where you can relax in the hot, summer months.
For many travelers, having a well-equipped kitchen is part of the reason they opt for a holiday rental in the first place, allowing them to self-cater during their stay. If you’re traveling with young children, then child-friendly amenities and/or particular safety features may be essential.
Once you’ve established your “needs”, also consider your “wants” – those little extras that you would like but aren’t essential. This could be things like off-street parking, a hot tub and high-speed Wi-Fi, or perhaps a selection of board games and books to keep you entertained.
3. Determine your budget
One of the simplest ways to filter search results on holiday rental sites is by pricing, allowing you to only see properties that meet your budget. It’s important to remember that expensive properties aren’t always necessarily better and you can usually find inspiring options if you’re looking for an affordable or mid-range stay. By setting your budget parameters before you start searching, you’re less likely to get lured into booking a more expensive property than you can afford and regret it later.
Also, keep in mind that while two properties may be priced exactly the same, there could be hidden extras, such as cleaning fees or charges for bedding and towels. Always scrutinize what is and isn’t included before you make a booking so that you know exactly what the final bill will be.
4. Don’t overlook the reviews
One of the most valuable tools when searching for travel rentals is reviews from previous guests detailing what they loved (or didn’t love) about a property. Reviews are filled with tidbits of information that might not be included in the online listing and they can help you to make an informed decision as to whether the rental is right for you.
Check to see whether the property lived up to its listing and if the host was a good communicator. If there is negative feedback, consider whether the issue would affect you or whether you think it was specific to that guest. Also, check to see if the owner has responded to rectify the situation while remembering that hiccups occur in even the most well-managed businesses.
5. Look for unique and creative spaces
One of the things that draw many travelers to holiday rental sites is the opportunity to stay in unique and creative spaces, with everything from houseboats to converted buses on offer. By staying in something that’s a little outside of the box, you’ll not only enjoy the novelty factor but it might inspire your creative energies.
Perhaps you want to overnight in a luxurious “glamping” tent with views to die for or maybe it’s a “hobbit” home inspired by the “Lord of the Rings”. You can find tree-top houses that are reminiscent of your childhood days or dwellings shaped like fruits and vegetables.
If you’re traveling with kids, they’ll love staying in alien-like UFOs and fairytale dwellings, resulting in a holiday they’ll never forget. For the architecturally minded, there is no shortage of incredible creations to stay in, with everything from tiny homes to minimalist, contemporary designs.
In the 21st century, holiday accommodation is so much more than just a place to rest your head at the end of the day. It’s an opportunity to broaden your horizons and see what’s possible when you have a vision and a dream.
A customized experience
Whether you’re traveling for business or heading away for a two-week annual vacation, a carefully chosen holiday rental can make a big difference to your overall experience. It means having the facilities and amenities that you desire while staying in a location that suits your needs. Most property owners also love sharing their favorite places to dine and be entertained, opening the doors to a wealth of local-only knowledge.