Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Guidelines to Know about Vacation Rentals

Opting for vacation rentals instead of hotel accommodation is an intelligent choice particularly if your family size is large or you are traveling with a big group of friends. When you decide in favor of vacation rentals - you can make big savings, avail a lot of amenities and enjoy a greater degree of freedom and privacy.

Here are some guidelines about vacation rentals to help you arrive at a more informed decision when you plan your next vacation.

• The first obvious step is to select your vacation destination. If you want to spend less on accommodation and save money for other holiday expenses, it is best to scout for economically-priced vacation rentals.
• You will come across several tempting offers online and you may compare rates and study the location of the property, amenities provided, and the number of bedrooms available and choose the best according to your preferences, needs and budget limits. Book online at least a few weeks in advance to avoid disappointment. Try if possible to avoid the peak seasons.
• There are many websites of vacation rental homes that not only list out the features but will also show you visuals of the exterior and interiors of the house. This will help you get a feel of the place and whether it is in line with your concept of a holiday accommodation. Make sure ou exhaustively check on the Internet before you choose any one rental company.
• Look on the web to see if you can locate any reviews from other guests who have used the same vacation rental you are considering. If you see anyone making serious complaints, then it is advisable you look for a different company. Try to choose the one that has favorable reviews with little or no adverse reporting.
• Most of the online vacation rental sites will accept payments by credit card or PayPal or any other payment gateway. But before effecting advance payment, make sure that it is a reputed, reliable and legitimate company offering vacation rentals and they are in the business sufficiently long.
• Ascertain from the owner or manager for any discounts and/ or special packages available. Check out the cancellation policy, breakage deposit, refunds if leaving early and penalty for late return of key. Find out if charges for pool heat and hot water, Internet and phone, electricity and gas, the use of spa and swimming pool are additionally payable.
• Get the necessary clarifications about security deposits on how much is demanded, what the refund terms are and what amount is likely to be withheld for damages. The deposits can be of different sorts – reservation deposit, security deposit, pet deposit etc. Please also ascertain the payment schedule as many vacation rentals may accept part payment as advance and balance amount upon leaving.
• Location of the property is another key issue. See if the property is near to city center and easily accessible to all tourist spots, shopping malls and restaurants. When the house is in a prime location, it means more savings in terms of costly transportation fares as well as minimum time spent for commuting and less physical fatigue.
• If you plan carrying your pets on your vacation, search for the pet-friendly sites that allow bringing of pets and make sure there are separate enclosures for the pets to stay - particularly when you and your family members go on sight-seeing activities.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Vacation Rentals - Easier than Hotels

The trend is positively changing and more and more people are opting for vacation rentals instead of hotel accommodation for a variety of reasons. In view of this, numerous vacation rentals have cropped up at almost all holiday destinations throughout the world. With vacation rentals plentifully available for just about every type of families or groups in just about every destination – you will assuredly be able find one that best fits your taste and needs.

As the competition is getting stiff, most vacation rentals have many of the same amenities as hotels. In fact, a lot of vacation rentals have started providing better facilities and comforts than standard hotels. Yet another important factor is a vacation rental is more economical than a hotel – if you intend availing a long-drawn vacation or if your family/ group is large with many kids.

All vacation rentals are invariably fully furnished and equipped with the standard appliances like air conditioner, heater, stove and refrigerator. Your family members will be particularly happy with vacation rentals as they can enjoy greater freedom and increased privacy.

The added advantages of vacation rentals are you can have multiple bed rooms, cozy living room, separate dining area, ample moving space for kids to play around, full fledged kitchen with cooking facilities etc. Remember that eating out regularly can be very costly and therefore cooking your own food instead can result in big cost savings. In short, opting for a vacation rental means you are hiring a home away from home.

It can be stated without fear of contradiction that many vacation rentals offer certain types of amenities that even the majority of hotels do not provide. Again, if your family is traveling with pets, a vacation rental is ideal as many hotels may be unwilling to accommodate your pets. Many vacation rentals will accept dogs and cats if you pay an additional deposit. However, make sure to check on the pet policy of the vacation rental beforehand, as each vacation rental has its own set of rules.

Vacation rentals also provide flat television, DVD, music system, video games, swimming pools and at times even computers with Internet connection. There are vacation rentals available in the heart of the city or in peripheral areas if you are seeking a peaceful ambience away from the madding crowd.

The easiest way to identify and book the vacation rentals in your desired destination is to contact your local travel agent who can help you find the rental that is best suited for you and your family's needs and preferences. There are numerous vacation rental websites that provide exhaustive information and you can also book vacation rentals online.

When booking a vacation rental, it is advisable that you deal with rental management companies than individual property owners. This way, it is easier to crosscheck the background of the vacation rentals and you will get to read many customer reviews. If you choose to avail your vacation during off-seasons, many vacation rentals will offer special discount packages.

Finally, it needs to be noted that with hotels - particularly big chains - you get more or less the same type of ambience. If you and your family truly desire a change and want to stay at a place that embraces the local culture, you should choose a vacation rental and not hotel accommodation.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

How to spend a happy vacation?

You must go on a vacation at least once a year and spend some quality time with your family and many psychologists opine that an annual vacation is necessary to preserve one’s mental health. If you want to truly enjoy a happy vacation, you should just forget all your personal problems and remain cheerful. To spend a happy vacation you should meticulously plan your entire vacation program ahead of time.

Please remember that planning a happy vacation will be quite easy once you decide on your destination, the number of people accompanying you, mode of travel, the duration of your vacation and things you would wish to see and do during the vacation period.

Once you are clear in your mind what exactly you want out of your vacation, you can easily prepare the entire vacation program. The most critical component of your vacation is the accommodation. The one assured way to have a happy vacation and spend quality time with your family is to opt for a vacation villa or a holiday cottage instead of staying in hotel rooms.

Vacation rentals and holiday cottages are generally attractive for varied reasons - cost savings, more space, no payment of tips, taxes or service charges – all of which become payable when living in hotel rooms. Besides, renting a villa or a holiday cottage can be much cheaper when compared to hiring hotel rooms.

A vacation rental is a fully furnished property and includes a holiday cottage, condominium, town home or single-family-style home, also referred to as villa rentals. If you have good accommodation with all amenities, then you really can relax and thoroughly enjoy the vacation trip. Before planning everything else, you need to make sure that you have chosen the best vacation villa or holiday cottage.

There are accommodation options galore but you must take into consideration quite a few factors into consideration before selecting the vacation rental. Make sure that the vacation rental or holiday cottage you choose has easy access to places of tourist interest and reliable transportation is available for you to go around.

If you prefer to be away from the din and bustle of the city center and want to have a quiet holiday with your family, you should select a villa or holiday cottage in some peripheral areas. You have to take into consideration the size of the vacation rental you need depending on the number of persons accompanying you.

Vacation rentals and holiday-cottage are available in varying sixes ranging from 2 to 20 persons. Besides, renting a villa or a holiday cottage can be much cheaper when compared to hiring hotel rooms.

Having a happy vacation means you should spend maximum hours with your family and loved ones and vacation rentals and holiday cottages will provide you the opportunity to stay close together whereas in hotels you may have to hire multiple rooms.

Eating out can be very costly and staying in a vacation rental or holiday cottage means you can cook your own meals and save a lot of money to meet other useful holiday expenses. Of course you should also visit restaurants to taste the local food and enjoy the local flavor but eating out should be rare.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Top ten travel tips for your vacation

Going on a vacation with your loved ones is indeed, one of the most fun-filled and joyous   experiences. You get to discover the most salubrious beaches, picturesque landscapes, quaint architecture, virgin forests, and so much more. Vacation travel entails careful planning and there are travel agents who will help you to organize some of your tour preparations.

When traveling, planning is of paramount importance as it will give you enough time to decide which things need to be of top priority and what the essential items to be carried are.

1. First of all, keep your travel documents securely and if you are planning overseas vacation, do not wait until the last minute to obtain passports because this may require several weeks.
2. To get the competitive rates for your transportation and holiday accommodations, you will need to make your reservations few weeks in advance. You can obtain some best bargains during the off-season when demand will be low.
3. Along with travel documents and your clothing, you must carry any special medicines that you or any of your family members may need. Before embarking on a trip, check to make sure that you are allowed to travel with your medicines.
4. Your best protection is to be alert, book your tours through trustworthy agencies, and if possible avoid traveling alone to an unfamiliar destination. Try to know the traditions and local culture of the destination before you start your trip. It is important to do your homework and know the area you will be visiting and the applicable laws, locations of best tourist spots, and the kind of people you will have to interact with.
5. As a result of terrorist activities, airports have increased their security inspections before allowing passengers to board. Get to the airport sufficiently early to manage the security check-in congestion. The locks for your luggage must be Travel Security Administration (TSA) approved ones so that your luggage can be opened for inspection without having to cut your locks.
6. When traveling, be constantly aware of your surroundings to guard against pickpockets. Travel with no more than two credit cards, and notify the card companies that you will be traveling so that they will not put a hold your cards when they notice charges from unfamiliar places.
7. Before leaving on a vacation with your family, make sure you have enough money and adequately financially equipped so that you are not broke midway. It is good to budget your expenses beforehand and avoid overspending.
8. Carry a digital camera that uses AA batteries instead of a camera that uses proprietary batteries. They are less expensive to replace, easy to charge and are easily available wherever you go.
9. When packing your dresses pile them up one on top of another and then fold them to fit into your suitcase. This will mean less creasing and you will not have to run around for ironing. Always pack each box or suitcase with a mixture of clothing of each family member traveling. Even if a bag is lost, no one will be bereft of change of clothes. Further, you will only have to open one suitcase at each hotel.
10. Finally, do not expect everything on your vacation to be perfect. You are possibly going to your dream destination and if you are taking your kids you will certainly have challenging moments. Forget all worries and enjoy the vacation and your hard-earned rest.

Source: Florida villas