August 14, 2019

Potential Downsides of Third-Party Rental Booking Sites

Across numerous related industries, the rise of third-party booking companies has become a mainstay in recent years. Sites like Expedia, VRBO, AirBnB and several others are all in the business of connecting those looking for various accommodations with the businesses that offer them, and in some cases they can be very convenient and practically useful.
At Bear Lake Luxury Rentals, while we welcome vacation rental bookings made through third-party sources, we’re also happy to take bookings directly – and we’re here to tell you that there are many situations where taking the direct approach is the best move for you. Let’s go over a few of the potential drawbacks of using third-party booking sites for your luxury rental, plus some of the benefits of dealing with these kinds of bookings directly.

Cost and Pricing
The first and most important area for many renters is the price they’ll be paying, and the value they get in return. In many cases, sites like AirBnB and HomeAway will be adding significant sums to your cost, often in the hundreds of dollars.
These aggregators, which also include sites like TripAdvisor and, also don’t always have the best price available. Whether this is because they’re marking the numbers up for profit or because they don’t have the right connection with the business in question, you’ll often find a cheaper price for the exact same rental by simply booking directly with a local company.

High-Demand Rentals Often Excluded
In most cases, there’s a cost associated with being listed on many of these big aggregator sites. As a result, many of the best and highest-demand vacation rentals won’t even be found on these sites at all – why would their owners pay for exposure they don’t need?
If you book directly, however, you never miss out on the hottest properties. Particularly if you’re diligent and do your research in advance, you may find deals that would never have even appeared on larger booking sites.

Local Rental Manager Benefits
On top of everything listed above, there are several distinct benefits to working directly with a local rental manager:
• Direct contact: For starters, booking this way puts you in direct contact with the local manager. This is a person you can ask for details of the rental, nearby amenities, cleaning or maintenance requirements, and any other specific questions you may have ahead of booking.
• Destination knowledge: Not only are local managers knowledgeable about their own rentals and services, they have a wide body of knowledge on local hotspots, restaurants, activity centers and more. In many cases, they often have discounts and special promotions linked through their business.
• Special needs: If you or anyone in your group has special needs, a rental manager can work with you directly to help fill them adequately and with no hassle.
For more on why you might want to consider avoiding third-party booking sites when booking your next vacation rental, or to learn about any of our luxury cabins, condos or other properties, speak to the staff at Bear Lake Luxury Rentals today.