Vacation Rental Budget Strategy

The larger a family gets the more difficult it can be to get away for a vacation, and to stay within the budget. Sometimes a vacation budget can be met if a shorter trip is planned. In my book it's better to at least get away for a short trip then not at all. Here's one of my own budgeting tips for travel that might help you stay within your budget for a short trip.

Vacation rentals are great and one of our favorite ways to get away in addition to bed and breakfast inns. As with everything else these days vacation rentals can be quite expensive and especially if it's in a popular vacation spot, which most of course are! With realestate prices it's always location, location, location that drives the prices up whether you're buying or in this case, renting. So, how can you cut the cost down for a vacation rental? It's actually quite easy, and this trick has worked for my husband and I multiple times. In fact we just applied this trick again this summer!

When you locate the vacation rental of your dreams, take a look at the availability calendar for the specific rental, and consider the rates and how it will fit into your budget. While investigating the rates you will see where it states if the rental has a specific minimum rental period, or minimum number of nights to rent it. Many of them specify at least a two night stay, but what if you can't afford that rental for two nights? The answer to that one is easy! Look closely at their calendar and look for the vacant one-nighters that were not booked up between!

For example, several years ago we rented a luxury condominium on the coast of Oregon at Depoe Bay for one night. Normally they had a two night minimum, but I found one stray night that was available. As it was then, they normally are more than happy to fill one stray night to keep the rental booked each day of the month. It was a win win for them and for us! It worked out great for us because two nights at that place would have been too expensive for our budget, but one night was workable.

Now in that particular case we did have it within our budget to rent a second place, but it would have required that it be less expensive. We lucked out with locating yet another stray one-night for a second vacation rental within half a mile of the first! There again they were more than happy to book up the one stray night.

In July we utilized that same strategy. We were able to book a vacation rental beach cabin within our budget by locating a stray night they had not been filled. Again their requirement was normally for a two night minimum, but in that they had the one stray night it was good for them, and good for us!

One last point in regards to using that technique. If you want to rent a specific place, but are not quite sure if you will like the rental, locating a stray night on their availability calendar gives you an opportunity to test drive the place for just one night without committing to two or more!

The basic rule of thumb here applies if they have a stray night available, so be sure to ask about renting the vacation destination of your dreams for less than their normal minimum. Most likely they'll be more than happy to rent it out to you, but they'll also perhaps want you to keep that strategy a secret!

That my friends is also why I'm not revealing where those vacation rentals are that have made exceptions to the rule - lol. If I did that then those stray nights on their calendars might not be available any longer, if I had to compete with all of the rest of you on the blogosphere to rent it - lol!

The last point to keep in mind is the closer you are to the date you need a rental, the more likely you'll be able to apply that strategy. So, if you are planning your vacation a year ahead you may not find as many possible stray one-nighters to rent. It is of course not as fun to stay anywhere for only one night, but if it's your only opportunity to get away, it's better than not getting a vacation at all!

© August 2007 Author: Tammara Nelson
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