The price of summer rentals in the United States in the great outdoors is skyrocketing
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American travelers fleeing the city this summer will have to pay much more for accommodation than before the pandemic, as the price of short-term rentals rises alongside rising vaccination rates and a relaxation of Covid-restrictions. 19.
While international vacations are still officially discouraged, with the US State Department recently expanding its list of people banned from travel to include around 80% of countries around the world, signs are already emerging of a sharp increase in prices for domestic rentals. short term.
Sites that offer detached single-family homes, like Airbnb and Vrbo, have “become the preferred accommodation choice for those looking to distance themselves socially,” said Steven Jankowski, head of growth at All The Rooms, who analyzes Airbnb data.
This has led to “short term rentals significantly outperforming hotels over the past 12 months,” Jankowski added.
In many places, prices are above 2019 levels, with the average daily rate for short-term rentals in the United States rising 26% for this summer compared to two years ago, according to data from AirDNA, a short term rental analysis company.
Jankowski said: “There is a preference for more expensive and larger rural listings, and less demand for urban listings, which on average tend to be cheaper.”
Jan Louise Jones, professor of hospitality and tourism at the University of New Haven, said places known for outdoor activities such as coastal areas, lakes, national parks and hiking destinations have recorded the greatest increases in demand and prices.
“We are already seeing increased demand for areas like national parks,” she said.
The number of nights already booked in rural areas for this summer is almost 50% higher than that booked at the same time in 2019, while bookings in urban centers are down 65%, according to AirDNA data .
Ted Rossman, analyst at CreditCards.com, said the increased demand for outdoor locations reflected the fact that many cities still have severe restrictions in the event of a pandemic, including “strict capacity limits in parks attractions, sporting events, concerts and other large gatherings ”.
Analysts say rising prices for short-term accommodation rentals are the first sign of a surge in travel inflation with Americans, who have hesitated to go on vacation, preparing to take their first vacation for more than a year.
“Bookings will continue to increase as more people get vaccinated and feel comfortable traveling,” Rossman said. “Many trips can be planned with shorter notice than usual. There are so many pent-up demands that once people feel ready, they might just leave. ”
The surge in demand comes at a time of tight supply, as owners of second homes who previously rented their properties to vacationers now occupy them after fleeing urban areas at the start of the pandemic.
“Many owners have decided not to rent and use their homes instead,” said Dana Trotter, of Sotheby’s International Realty in Bridgehampton, which has a short-term rental business. “Prices are much less negotiable and many homes have even had bidding wars for rentals this year.”
However, Rossman said a sharp drop in business travel will continue to weigh on other sectors of the travel industry, such as hotels and airlines. “There is a lot of pent-up demand among leisure travelers, but a much lower appetite for business road warriors. ”