SAN FRANCISCO - From the frontline workers needing temporary accommodations to the road warriors wanting an RV rental for a socially-distanced trip, people all over the world continued to seek accommodations in 2020. VacationRenter, a company that aggregates the best rentals from top sites, evolved to meet the changing needs of travelers and helped millions of people find places to stay in 2020. The challenges facing the travel community amid the COVID-19 pandemic have made it crucial for travel companies to support both travelers and hosts. In response, the VacationRenter team focused on three key areas to provide for its customers:
- Health and Safety Made Easy. The VacationRenter team added features that highlighted precautions hosts were taking to keep their guests safe, such as contactless check-in and enhanced cleaning procedures, making it easier for travelers to find the best rentals.
- Personalized Search. The team redesigned the search experience by refining its machine learning algorithm to consider the new needs of travelers, providing more filters to make the planning process easier, and allowing travelers to save their favorite listings to revisit later.
- New Places to Stay. VacationRenter became the first vacation rental site to list RV rentals during a time when RV rental interest surged because of the safe and socially distant nature of RV travel. The site now has more than 100,000 RVs across 15 countries, making it the largest peer-to-peer platform for RV rentals - and the only search engine that includes both vacation rentals and RVs.
By heightening its focus on building for the new world of travel in 2020, VacationRenter wrapped up the year surpassing a major milestone. The startup - which launched in 2018 - exceeded $1 billion in gross booking value for the year.
As travel behavior continues to evolve in 2021, VacationRenter is building solutions to meet the needs of travelers everywhere. This year, the company will continue to expand into international markets and offer new property types to tailor to the unique and changing needs of guests around the world. The startup will also further simplify and personalize the customer journey by building industry-first research and planning tools, and continuing to improve its machine learning-driven property recommendations.
“People needed safe and socially-distanced places to stay in 2020, and I’m proud of our team for being there for travelers at such a critical time,” said Chief Operating Officer, Marco del Rosario. “This year, we are committed to building innovative solutions that adapt as traveler needs evolve to make finding the perfect rental easier than ever before.”