Vacation Rentals are a great alternative to hotels given the benefits of space, privacy, and added amenities. Vacation rentals generally offer additional space for less cost per night versus the typical hotel room. Amenities offered by vacation rentals often include washers and dryers, full kitchens (so you can save money by dining in), DVD players, hot tubs, games and even private pools.
While hotels are a familiar option, the popularity of vacation rentals continues to grow as more and more travelers discover the unique benefits of this type of accommodation.
What You'll Gain
In most cases you'll have more space, more privacy and more money in your pocket when you choose a vacation rental rather than a hotel. You'll also most likely have access to a kitchen and washer/dryer. If your property is part of a larger resort or condo complex, you might also enjoy privileges like golf, tennis and concierge service.
What You'll Give Up
Not all rentals are created equal. Private single-family homes may not have the same amenities that condos or villas within a resort community will. When renting the single-family home variety you may forfeit maid service, concierge service, room service and in-house restaurants. You might also encounter a lawn keeper or a pool cleaner on the property. Beach homes usually have more rigid check-in dates than hotels and may not offer any special perks. Beach chairs, bikes and baby equipment will probably have to be rented on your own.
Resort homes, condos and villas located within a resort community or condo complex generally offer a more complete amenities package. Depending on the destination, linens, beach towels and bath towels may be provided. The property may also offer daily or weekly maid service, often at extra cost. You'll find more flexible check-in dates in this type of accommodation than you would at a single-family beach house.
Understand that expectations should differ amongst different accommodations whether a vacation rental or hotel.