Planning your next holiday and looking for tips for renting a holiday home? Read on for our ideas so that you can make the most of your holiday experience.
- Ever wished that you could live like pop stars/the wealthy/ the privileged but don’t think it is possible due to a tight budget?
- Do you dream about a luxury holiday where you have access to every mod con you can think of – and with access to facilities and activities for adults and kids alike?
- Do you like holidaying with a group of family/friends and are keen on exploring all the local activities (or just relaxing by your own private pool or spa)?
If you have answered “YES” to any of the above questions, then a holiday home rental could be just the thing you are looking for!
More and more people are booking their holiday accommodation online. Some people feel that this is risky and/or are scared of being burnt by scammers, but here are some great tips on how to avoid these risks.
Google is my friend
We all know that there are a number of reputable websites which offer accommodation bookings on line. Often, holiday home owners will list with more than one online booking service. So, check a few options out, make a selection and then google the name of your favourite holiday home selections. If they are listed multiple times, you know that they are serious holiday home owners and have met rigorous listing requirements across a range of online booking sites/services.
Do they have their own website?
If you have done your search above and found that the holiday home has their own website, check their last minute accommodation specials to see if they offer discounts for booking direct. This can save you some cash in your booking and offers a nice little added extra.
If the property does have its own website, then there is probably some great information on things to do in the local area. Have a read before you book to check out things you might like to do and before you go do a quick list of some of the activities and attractions you might like to visit.
Reputable website will also list where you can find them on other websites. Always handy to know.
Facebook, Twitter, https://plus.google.com/+LaMaisonPacifique1, You-tube, Linked in Company and other networks
We can’t imagine that scammers will go to the extent to update content on all of the above networks, so if you favourite accommodation has all these links, check out what they have to say. Are you comfortable with what they are offering?
Read their guest book comments – and write your own
Always a good indication of how good a holiday home rental is can be a review from a guest. Don’t be afraid to write your own too as both the owner and future guests appreciate it.
Understanding the terms and conditions
Ok, so we are all busy people, but have a read of the terms and conditions. Most holiday homes require a bond. Our experience is that most holiday home owners are keen to return the bond in full. However, if there are breakages and damages, these are not covered in the cost of the accommodation. A bond is totally reasonable, but budget for this in your cost (and chase up once you leave).
There may be other conditions such as no wedding parties/receptions, quiet hours (holiday home owners don’t want to upset their neighbours) and some safety requirements around pools. Most holiday home owners are reasonable in relation to these but be clued up before you book and confirm.
Check the inclusions – and compare
Some holiday home owners set their rates according to accommodation + add-ons (ie. linen hire, cleaning, beach towel hire, bedmaking etc) – making the initial cost seem “cheap” but the overall cost higher. Make sure you add them all up to get a real cost for your holiday.
Other holiday home owners have an all inclusive one-off cost with a list of inclusions (including those listed above). So, when you are choosing your favourites make sure you are comparing apples with apples. You don’t want a fright when your bill arrives!
Don’t forget credit card fees too. Are these included? Does your favourite selection even accept credit cards/paypal so you can earn your frequent flyer points – but also have the extra security provided by booking via credit card?
Confirm, confirm, confirm
Confirm your number of guests with the holiday home owner or their property manager. If you have selected a home that offers accommodation for 10, you can generally be assured that all facilities (ie. furniture, crockery, cutlery, etc) will cater for 10. There may also be different bedding configurations so make sure you let them know your choice so that you can cater for your whole group comfortably.
You should receive a confirmation email with all the details from the property owner or manager. …and if you want to double check your own booking, go back to one of their booking sites and see whether the week you have booked has been blocked out… If not, send a quick email or call the property manager to ensure you are booked in.
Another idea is to make a calendar note for one month prior to your arrival. At that time, send off a quick email confirming your booking and requesting any extra information (or extra services – such as groceries – see below) that you need. You holiday is coming up after all, so now is the time to get excited!
Are you sharing?
Most holiday homes are complete in themselves and you have the whole site available for you and your guests. However, it is also good to check if there are any shared facilities on site.
Who to call in an emergency
This will often be found in your arrival information (probably worth checking that they have that!), but make sure you know who to contact. Arrival information is important as it will also give you tips on how things work at the home. Every home has its own little quirks so it is nice to know that there is a FAQ/information sheet that can solve any dilemmas. An emergency contact is vital for the unexplained.
Consider ordering your groceries online before you arrive
A classic extra service is grocery shopping. With the plethora of online grocery stores (including Coles and Woolworths) available throughout Australia, what better thing to arrange for your arrival is for your shopping to be packed away ready? Yes, you can do your big order online, but check whether your holiday home owner has an “open door and unpack groceries” service (particularly helpful with the cold items) which will mean that you can start your holidays as soon as your arrive and your groceries are ready and waiting in the pantry and fridge/freezer.
We do hope our top tips for renting a holiday home has been useful and feel free to email us with any extra tips that you have. We love to share.
…and… if you are looking for a resort-style luxury beachfront holiday home for your family holiday, romantic break wedding accommodation, (watch our video here), or a girls getaway contact us at La Maison Pacifique for availability and a quote…. Remember, our rates compare really well with local 5-star resorts – and La Maison Pacifique is private – on the beach – walking distance to cafes at Cabarita Beach – perfect spot for whale watching (June to November each year) – children optional!
Would you like to book or find out more about us?
Look at our last minute accommodation specials or
Until next time – enjoy your day wherever you are from La Maison Pacifique “The Peaceful House” and your boutique designer luxury holiday home vacation rental in Casuarina, New South Wales, Australia – half way between the Gold Coast QLD and Byron Bay NSW, Australia.
Property Consultant & Interior Designer
La Maison Pacifique
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Video Tour – http://www.youtube.com/embed/KR8MiuA00Xg
Wedding Accommodation Video – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zi7xxUJSDDE