If you're planning to hit the road and get away from home for a vacation, the biggest part of getting things in order for your trip should center around where you'll be staying while home isn't an option. Unless you own a vacation home or participate in a timeshare, you're instantly narrowed to two main options: stay at a hotel, or find a vacation rental.
While hotels make great choices for super short stays, they quickly become prohibitively expensive once you pass the 48 hour mark or so, meaning that any serious vacation plan simply must include a rental.
With that in mind, the next step is to be sure that your vacation rental offers everything you need to give yourself the feeling of a true home away from home, while still not breaking the bank. Here are four tips for choosing the very best vacation rentals:
1. It's All About Location, Location, Location
When it comes to vacationing, obviously the old real estate adage of "location, location, location" comes into play, but it's important to remember that this applies to more than just the region that you choose to visit.
For example, you may settle on a trip to Canada before determining that the city of Vancouver would be the best place to give you a taste of the country and what it has to offer, but it's worth keeping in mind that the very block on which you find yourself will be just as important to your level of enjoyment! Using a tool like Google Earth, take the time to scope out the immediate surroundings of each of your vacation rental options, allowing you to be sure that the area suits your intentions right down to the city street.
2. Go Big or Stay Home
When exploring possible vacation rentals, you'll quickly find that you can stay anywhere from a tiny room in a hostel to a sprawling mansion, so it's important to keep your size requirements firmly in mind as you investigate, never getting so carried away with savings that you become blinded to your needs.
Obviously your rental size requirements will very much depend on the size of your party, but going big is a good general rule of thumb. "Big" doesn't necessarily mean huge in this sense, but you should always err on the side of caution where ensuring comfort is concerned, spending a few extra dollars in order to give you and your companions the space they need to settle into an enjoyable trip.
3. Keep Amenities in Mind
Size, space, and comfort level are all important, but, let's face it: the vast majority of everything you'll be doing while vacationing will take place outside of your rental digs, so staying in a location that offers the amenities you need is no less important than those to be found indoors!
From the basics like markets, restaurants, and things to do, to a doctor's office and dry cleaning establishment for longer stays, take the time to make a thorough list of the amenities that you'll need during your vacation, and then plot your vacation rental accordingly, avoiding the major headache that the loss of something you would otherwise take for granted can cause while away from home.
4. Do Your Research
Finally, a last important tip that aims to please your wallet as opposed to your physical comfort: always compare prices on potential rental properties in a given area, enabling you to save every last dollar for the more important things while vacationing. Whether you work through travel firms or spend a few hours on Trip Advisor, take the time to put each possibility side-by-side, allowing you to zone in on some of the fantastic deals that are available to be had, giving you both peace of mind and a more intact wallet - two very important ingredients in any epic vacation!
Are there any otehr tips to share? Please post them in the comments!
Annie is the in-house blogger at Dobovo, the free app for searching Odessa apartments online.