While they hold the growing majority of purchasing power, Millennials are increasingly choosing vacation rentals over hotels, and with good reason. Many Millennials, having watched their parents go through a crippling financial crisis, choose to be thrifty when they spend their money.
What is a vacation rental?
A vacation rental could be a number of things, from timeshares to a space found on AirBnB. The words "vacation rental" likely conjures images of a beach house, but they're actually available in a wide range of places. Vacation rentals' most popular form is that of a house, condo or cabin. But you can also find them as luxury apartments in the big city, as well as townhouses. With the increasing popularity of AirBnB, vacation rentals now include a room for rent. This is where you literally stay with a stranger during your vacation. With that information, Millennial vacationers are now searching anything from a single room to an entire home, and they often find options with better locations at a lower cost than a hotel.
Why not stay in a hotel?
There are a number of benefits in choosing vacation rentals over a hotel room, not the least of which is access to a kitchen. In most cases, vacation rentals will include access to a full kitchen with dishes, utensils, and everything else you need to make a meal or reheat your leftovers. Since Millennials are typically thrifty, even when they're on vacation, this allows them to make the most of their food budget in a convenient way. This is especially true since many Millennials try to be conscientious of the environment, so wasting food because their hotel room lacks fridge space and a way to heat it up isn't desirable.
Another benefit is the knowledge available through the locals. This is especially true if you're actually staying in their home with them and have a chance to pick their brain. They can make suggestions for the best places to eat, which attractions are tourist traps to avoid, and which spots you don't want to miss. While a concierge at a hotel can certainly make suggestions, it can be difficult to tell if they're making that suggestion based on personal experience or hotel policy. By choosing a vacation rental, Millennials can have a richer and more authentic vacationing experience when visiting new cities because they are surrounded by locals.
The cost savings offered by choosing a vacation rental over a hotel can also be attractive. While vacation rentals don't offer room service or housekeeping, most Millennials don't get a lot of use out of those services anyway. They have no problem making their own beds if they can spend their savings on more memorable experiences, and room service is usually over priced and not anything special. After all, most Millennials believe that delivered pizza is a form of room service. Fair enough - right?
Another reason Millennials tend to lean toward staying in a vacation rental opposed to that of a hotel is pet-friendly. Pet-friendly is a growing trend in the hospitality world. More vacation rentals are allowing pets versus that of a hotel. But hotels are catching on and are starting to dedicate various rooms for pet guests.
This is not to say that all Millennials pass on hotels and resorts, it is just a very notable trend we are seeing. There are still plenty that still venture to the use of hotels, bed and breakfast and resorts.
Many vacation rental owners are noticing the trend now that we all realize that some of those millennials are hitting their 30s. The question is how do vacation rental owners appeal to them and attract them. Do you have a plan?