What is Vrbo?
Vrbo is a vacation rental company that offers a variety of properties, including houses, apartments, cabins, and villas, for travelers to book for short-term stays.
It is owned by Expedia Group and is a popular option for travelers looking for alternative accommodations to traditional hotels. Vrbo allows travelers to search for rentals by location, price, number of bedrooms, and other amenities, and it also offers a variety of tools and resources to help travelers plan and book their vacations, including information on local attractions, travel insurance options, and customer support.
What types of accommodation does Vrbo offer?
Vrbo offers a variety of accommodation types, including houses, apartments, cabins, villas, and other types of vacation rentals.
The types of properties available on Vrbo vary depending on the location and the owner, but common types of properties include beach houses, ski cabins, city apartments, and rural retreats.
Some properties may have additional amenities such as pools, hot tubs, or outdoor spaces, and many are located near popular tourist attractions or recreational activities. Vrbo also offers a range of pricing options, so travelers can find accommodations that fit their budget.
How much does Vrbo charge?
Vrbo (formerly known as Vacation Rentals by Owner) is a vacation rental platform that allows property owners and property managers to list their properties for short-term rentals.
The platform charges a service fee to both the property owner and the guest. The exact amount of the service fee varies depending on the location and type of property, as well as the length of the stay. Generally, the service fee for a booking on Vrbo ranges from 6% to 12% of the booking subtotal, with the average fee being around 8%.
This fee is typically split between the property owner and the guest, with the property owner paying a slightly larger portion. In addition to the service fee, Vrbo also charges a guest fee to cover the cost of processing the reservation. The guest fee is typically a flat fee of around $5 to $10 per booking.
How does Vrbo work?
Vrbo is a platform that allows property owners and property managers to list their properties for short-term rentals. Potential guests can browse and search for properties on the Vrbo website or mobile app, and can contact the property owner or manager directly to inquire about availability and make a booking.
Here’s a general overview of how the process works:
- Property owners or managers create a listing for their property on Vrbo, including details such as the location, amenities, and availability.
- Guests search for properties on the Vrbo website or app, using filters such as location, dates, and number of guests to find properties that meet their needs.
- Guests contact the property owner or manager to inquire about availability and to ask any questions they may have about the property.
- If the property is available, the guest can book the property through the Vrbo platform. The guest will typically be asked to provide a deposit and to agree to the terms and conditions of the rental.
- Once the booking is confirmed, Vrbo will charge the guest’s credit card for the total cost of the rental, including any applicable fees. The property owner or manager will receive payment for the rental, minus any applicable fees or commissions.
- During their stay, guests can communicate with the property owner or manager through the Vrbo platform if they have any questions or need assistance.
- After the stay, guests can leave a review of their experience on the Vrbo website or app, which can help other potential guests make informed decisions about whether to book the property.
Benefits of using Vrbo
There are several benefits to using Vrbo as a vacation rental platform:
- Wide selection of properties: Vrbo has a large and diverse selection of properties available for rent, including homes, apartments, cabins, and vacation rentals of all sizes and styles. This makes it easy to find a property that meets your needs and budget.
- Convenience: Vrbo makes it easy to search for and book a vacation rental online. You can view photos and details of the property, check availability, and make a booking all from the convenience of your computer or mobile device.
- Flexibility: With Vrbo, you can choose from a wide range of rental periods, from a few days to a few weeks. This allows you to tailor your vacation to your specific needs and schedule.
- Trust and security: Vrbo has a number of measures in place to ensure the trust and security of its users. These include verified property listings, a secure payment system, and a 24/7 customer support team.
- Customer reviews: Vrbo allows guests to leave reviews of their stay, which can help you make an informed decision about which property to book. Reviews can give you insight into the property, the location, and the host, as well as any potential issues or concerns.
- Professional property management: Many of the properties listed on Vrbo are managed by professional property management companies. This can provide an added level of service and support, as well as peace of mind for guests.
Good customer service
Good customer service is important because it helps to ensure that customers have a positive experience when interacting with a company. This can lead to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty, as well as positive word-of-mouth marketing.
There are a number of ways that companies can provide good customer service, including:
- Responding promptly to customer inquiries and requests: Customers appreciate timely responses to their questions or issues, and companies should strive to provide prompt and helpful assistance.
- Being friendly and helpful: Customers appreciate friendly and helpful customer service representatives who are willing to go the extra mile to help them.
- Being knowledgeable: Customers appreciate customer service representatives who are knowledgeable about the products or services they offer, and who can provide helpful information and assistance.
- Resolving issues effectively: Customers appreciate companies that are able to quickly and effectively resolve any issues they may have.
- Listening to customer feedback: Companies should listen to customer feedback and use it to improve their products or services, as well as the customer experience.
Good customer service is about treating customers with respect and providing them with the help and assistance they need.
Drawbacks of using Vrbo
While Vrbo can be a convenient and cost-effective way to book a vacation rental, there are a few potential drawbacks to using the platform:
- Service fees: Vrbo charges a service fee to both the property owner and the guest for each booking. While these fees can vary, they can add a significant cost to the overall price of the rental.
- Lack of standardization: Because Vrbo allows individuals and property management companies to list their properties, the quality and amenities of the rentals can vary widely. This means that it’s important to carefully research and compare properties before booking.
- Limited customer protections: While Vrbo does have a secure payment system and a 24/7 customer support team, it does not offer the same level of customer protections as some other vacation rental platforms. For example, some platforms offer guaranteed refunds in certain circumstances, such as if the property is not as described or if the host cancels the booking.
- Risk of scams: Unfortunately, there is a risk of scams on any online platform, including Vrbo. It’s important to be cautious and to do your research before making a booking to ensure that you are dealing with a legitimate property owner or manager.
Vrbo vs. Airbnb: Which is better?
Both Vrbo and Airbnb are popular vacation rental platforms, and each has its own unique features and benefits. It’s difficult to say definitively which one is “better,” as the right choice will depend on your specific needs and preferences. Here are a few points to consider when comparing Vrbo and Airbnb:
- Property selection: Vrbo has a wider selection of properties available for rent, including homes, apartments, cabins, and more. Airbnb primarily offers homes and apartments, although it also has a small selection of unique properties such as treehouses and yurts.
- Pricing: In general, Vrbo tends to have higher prices than Airbnb, due in part to the service fees that it charges. However, prices can vary widely depending on the location and type of property, as well as the time of year. It’s always a good idea to compare prices on both platforms before booking.
- Customer protections: Airbnb offers a number of customer protections, including a host guarantee, a cancellation policy, and a resolution center to help resolve disputes. Vrbo does not offer these protections to the same extent, although it does have a secure payment system and a 24/7 customer support team.
- Booking process: Airbnb allows guests to book a property with a single click, while Vrbo requires guests to contact the property owner or manager directly to inquire about availability and make a booking. This can be either a benefit or a drawback depending on your preferences.
Ultimately, the best choice for you will depend on your specific needs and preferences. It’s a good idea to compare both platforms and consider factors such as property selection, pricing, customer protections, and the booking process before making a decision.
Is Vrbo worth it?
Whether or not Vrbo is worth it will depend on your specific needs and preferences. Here are a few factors to consider when deciding whether to book a vacation rental through Vrbo:
- Property selection: Vrbo has a wide selection of properties available for rent, including homes, apartments, cabins, and more. This can make it a good choice if you are looking for a specific type of property or want a large selection to choose from.
- Pricing: Vrbo charges a service fee to both the property owner and the guest for each booking. While these fees can vary, they can add a significant cost to the overall price of the rental. This can make Vrbo less appealing if you are looking for the lowest possible price.
- Customer protections: Vrbo does not offer the same level of customer protections as some other vacation rental platforms, such as guaranteed refunds in certain circumstances. This can be a drawback if you are concerned about the security of your booking.
- Booking process: Vrbo requires guests to contact the property owner or manager directly to inquire about availability and make a booking, which can be either a benefit or a drawback depending on your preferences.
Vrbo can be a good choice if you are looking for a wide selection of properties and are willing to pay a service fee for the convenience of booking through the platform. However, if you are primarily concerned with price or customer protections, you may want to consider other options.