Vacation Rentals Are Selling Out for Summer 2021

by Natasha Gabrielle | Published on July 9, 2021

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A group of friends sitting in the sun on the deck of a lakefront cabin.

Image source: Getty Images

Vacation rentals are booking fast, so you may need to get creative when making your summer vacation plans.

If you're hoping to take a vacation this summer and haven't yet booked reservations for accommodations, you may have more limited options or have to think of alternate plans. That's because there's been an increase in travel now that pandemic restrictions have lessened and more people are vaccinated. Check out the details below.

There aren't enough rentals to meet demand

Many travelers prefer to stay in vacation homes over hotels, likely for a variety of reasons. In some cases, vacation rentals can be a cheaper alternative to hotels. These rental properties can also provide a more spacious setup and often have more comforts typically found at home. Plus, they usually offer a lot more privacy than a hotel.

But if you were hoping to book a vacation home for a summer trip, you should be aware that bookings are selling out. According to Jeff Hurst, President of VRBO, an American vacation home rental marketplace, there just aren't enough available properties to meet the demand of travelers.

While speaking with Yahoo Finance Live, Hurst noted, "When we think about the supply side and vacation rentals in particular in the U.S., the reality is for most peak days there are not enough."

But that doesn't mean booking a vacation rental for your trip is entirely out of the question. Your vacation planning may require some flexibility and creativity, but there are options out there.

Tips to save on summer travel

There are some incredible places you can visit that might not be top tourist spots, but they still offer many attractions, plenty of beauty, and lots of fun. Don't be afraid to try something new when planning your summer vacation.

Here are some steps that you can take that will allow you to have fun and explore new places without breaking your budget.

  • Choose a drivable destination. Hurst noted, "A lot of the top dates and top destinations are booked up. But we've really been encouraged by how many people are willing to try different drive-to destinations.” With flight prices and rental car costs so high right now, you can save a lot of money if you choose a destination that is closer to your home. Using your car and only having to pay for gas can free up money in your vacation budget. Plus, traveling by car adds another level of adventure to your trip experience.
  • Play around with your travel dates. Taking a full week-long vacation or traveling over a long weekend may be costly. Plus, everyone else will likely have the same idea. Instead, consider changing your dates to take a Monday-through-Friday trip. Doing this gives you some time away but can help to lower the cost of accommodations, flights, and activities.
  • Use travel credit card rewards. If you already have a travel credit card, use your points to book accommodation. This can trim down the total cost of your trip. If you don't yet have a travel rewards card, we recommend getting one. You can use your card to book your reservations and earn points on your spending. Eventually, you can use your rewards to book travel for a future trip.

Yes, vacation home rentals are booking up quickly. But that doesn't mean that your dreams of taking a summer vacation are out of reach. Make a vacation rental or hotel reservation right away or get creative with your summer travel plans for better success. And if you're looking for additional ways to make smart money moves in your everyday life, check out our personal finance resources for helpful tips and tricks.

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