Vrbo recently announced a program that helps rental property owners communicate updated cleaning practices and shows customers rental properties closer to home as consumer preference shifts in response to Covid-19.
“Transparency between travelers and homeowners about expectations and protocols is more important than ever,” says Vrbo president Jeff Hurst.
The new program includes guidelines from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization and Cristal International Standards. Property owners and managers have “clear guidelines” for disinfecting surfaces, avoiding back to back stays, and making sure that guests have cleaning products available for their safety. These changes will now be shown to customers in an updated property description.
Vrbo also announced a new search function that shows proximity, allowing travelers to plan a trip within driving distance in a time when few people are willing to fly.
Guidelines Cater to Shifting Demand
Vrbo hopes that these changes will help families decide when to travel again and shows a recognition that the market has shifted significantly over the last few months.
In an interview with Forbes, Hurst said that Spring 2020 travel dipped heavily as stay-at-home orders took effect across the country, but things are starting to pick up for the summer. Vacation rental demand has accelerated significantly as states begin to open, with many trips planned at the end of the summer.
Hurst claims that much of the demand in their top areas comes from travelers that are within an “easy drive” of the area. This suggests that the rental market has started to rebound, but consumer travel habits have shifted to destinations within driving distance.