While I was reading these articles, I began to wonder just how much money could be saved in buying vacation rentals through this direct channel. This will be the topic of today’s posting. Let’s get started!
How do the prices compare between buying direct on VRBO.com and through normal channels?
To answer this question, let’s compare rates for like properties/lodging at two destinations that I have visited in the past 3 years or so: Snowshoe, WV and Panama City Bean, FL.
To simplify our search and ensure equal comparison, we will use the same range of dates for a week this coming August (August 16-23, 2010). Even though these dates may not be the peak travel times to either of the destinations, it will simplify our analysis.
For Snowshoe, WV, we will assume that we have our hearts set on staying at the Whislepunk Condos (right by the ski/mountain bike trails.
- Using VRBO.com, I found that the weekly rental rate for this time period at Whistlepunk is $744. See the link below for more details.
- Using Snowshoe Resort’s website, I found that the weekly rental rate for this time period for the same property is $1600. See the link below for more details.
- Whistlepunk 2 bdrm Condo – Snowshoe, WV Resort.com
For Panama City, FL, we will assume that we have our hearts set on staying at the Summit Condominium Resort, a mainstay for college spring breakers across the country. This resort is located right on the Gulf of Mexico, with great views of the waves.
- Using VRBO.com, I found that the weekly rental rate for a 1 bdrm condo unit at Summit Condos is $650. See link below for details.
- Using the Summit Condo’s regular website, I found that the weekly rental rate for the same time period is $775.
So, by the evidence found in the investigation above, we would have saved $850 and $125 by booking the Snowshoe and Panama City condos at VRBO.com, respectively.
While you may not always see results as dramatic as these, I think this clearly shows that I will seriously consider using VRBO.com next time I am needing to book housing for a trip.
How about you all? Have you had experience renting directly from owners for vacation housing? How did the price compare? Higher? Lower?
How was the overall experience?
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