I came across this article that was featured in the RentByOwnerGuide's blog in 2013. It was written by Cindy Amato from Bookerville and I feel it has more relevance now than it did 3 years ago. It's called:

Run Your Vacation Rental Like a Hotel But Make it Feel Like Home (ref)

Unfortunately, like it or not, guests DO prefer the option to instant book - why wouldn't they? And that's why companies like Airbnb & HomeAway are pushing instant booking so heavily. It provides a more "hotel" experience.

It's another debate entirely whether instant booking will actually work in the long run for vacation rentals. Sure, 100% it works for hotels & short-term rentals... but more expensive luxury holiday rentals... I think not.

Regardless of your stance point on instant booking for vacation rentals, guests still enjoy a hotel smooth experience with all the benefits of a home. Aspects of providing a hotel experience (as mentioned in the article) are:

  • Hassle free booking
  • Being clean, uncluttered and comfortable
  • Be consistent
  • Provide some special, complimentary amenities
  • Well oiled cleaning & management staff

However, rentals ARE NOT hotels and provide other benefits to guests such as:

  • Local experience
  • Homely feel
  • Self-catering amenities
  • Unique locations
  • Better suitability: Parking for cars, gardens for dogs etc
  • More privacy

So why not marry the two? Airbnb is a perfect example of this. They recognise that guests love a hotel experience combined with a unique local and homely feel.

Running your business like a hotel will ensure your guests have a hassle-free stay... Making it feel like a home will ensure your guests have a memorable stay.

Therefore, I think it's important to keep this slogan in mind whilst running your business:

Run Your Vacation Rental Like a Hotel But Make it Feel Like Home


2 years ago

Hey @powen, thanks for sharing. Hadn't seen this article until now and you're right, it's a very pertinent topic at the moment.

It's so true though, vacation rentals can really learn a lot from hotels.

Love that slogan too. After all, the "home away from home" experience is what we're all searching for, right?

2 years ago


Nice blog post. Asking for feedback like a hotel is interesting. Reviews are technically feedback but rarely useful for improving. Feedback slips and online survey forms are an excellent idea!

2 years ago

Love it

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