Part of the appeal of visiting a new vacation destination is soaking in the local culture. One of the best ways to feel like a local is to live like a local ~ literally. Forgo booking another hotel that looks the same in every city and opt to rent a vacation rental for your next trip’s accommodations. Vacation rentals can be found anywhere, including down a winding street in Prague — Photo courtesy of Megy Karydes
Here are 10 reasons why a vacation rental - whether it’s an urban apartment, country cabin in the woods or house along the beach - is the way to go when looking for a place to stay.
1. Surprising affordability
Need just a single room or an entire house? Traveling by yourself or with a large group? Vacation rentals can be a very affordable option.
Many vacation rentals offer beautiful landscapes backyards to enjoy a cup of coffee or to relax — Photo courtesy of Megy Karydes
2. Neighborhood feel
The café down the street isn’t a tourist trap. It’s where the locals go every morning to grab their coffee or breakfast.
3. Access to local and insider information
Vacation rental property owners are often more than willing to steer you in the right direction when it comes to bike trails, great restaurants or venues to hear awesome local bands for free. Whatever your interest, ask them for recommendations or websites that locals use to get their information.
4. Access to amenities (like bikes, BBQ grill, swimming noodles)
It’s not unusual for some properties to allow their renters access to amenities like bicycles, swimming essentials and their grill. Where it might be a hassle to enjoy some of the local attractions like bike trails or the beach when you’re staying in a hotel and didn’t bring your bicycle or noodles for the kids, it becomes an easier option when the place has a bike waiting for you to enjoy.
The author playing with her son in their apartment rental in Toronto. Open living spaces are what appeals to her family when it comes to vacation rentals. — Photo courtesy of Megy Karydes
5. More livable space
At the end of the day (or during chaotic mornings), more livable space is one of the most attractive benefits of vacation rentals. Put your feet up and watch a movie, let the kids play with their toys or drink a glass of wine on the deck.
6. A proper kitchen
There’s nothing worse than a faulty coffee machine or wanting to snack on something but you’re stuck in a hotel room with a faulty coffee machine or snacks that cost as much as a nice meal. A full and functioning kitchen means you can run to the grocery store and stock up on essentials (including the kind of coffee you love, not what’s available).
Unique and one-of-a-kind furnishings can be found in some vacation rentals — Photo courtesy of Megy Karydes
7. Loads of character
Original local artwork, crown molding and beautifully landscaped yards make it feel like a home, not just a place to hang your hat for the night.
8. Easier parking options
Depending on where you’re visiting, the place might offer garage parking or neighborhood parking. Some vacation rentals in metropolitan cities are in neighborhoods where free street parking still exists.
9. Easier access to community resources (like parks and libraries)
For those days where you just want to hang out or get a feeling of what it’s like to really live like a local, check out a nearby park, library or independent bookstore.
10. Ease of re-booking
Certain vacation rental service providers keep your information in their database and allow you (and the person whom you rented) to rate your experience with the property.
Don’t overlook the option of a vacation rental when planning your next trip. Aside from making your trip feel more personal and relaxing, it can be a great way to save money and time.