Taking a cottage rental vacation in Ontario is something thousands of groups do every year, but it’s not the easiest task to find just the right one for your family. Just figuring out which location is best is a challenge. Is a big sandy beach important, or do you want to dive off a dock? Is unlimited wifi essential or are you happy to unplug for a week? Do you want to be close to activities and attractions or are you happy to relax by the water day after day?
All these decisions are ones that a good rental manager can help you with. Their staff have visited every property personally and will help match your needs to just the right cottage.
When you reserve with an online listing platform such as Airbnb, HomeAway or VRBO, you won’t get the opportunity to talk to the person who knows the property best before you book. And that could spell disaster.
Here’s 7 reasons why you should #BookDirect…..
- Did you know that the online travel agencies such as Airbnb, VRBO, HomeAway and Trip Advisor add hundreds of dollars in fees to your booking total. You could pay over 20% more than you would by booking direct.
- Many of the best cottages aren’t listed on the major sites because the cost of listing is high and the rental agencies have high demand so don’t need these alternative methods of advertising. You could be missing out on some of the best properties by not researching what else is out there.
- You’ll get the best price by booking direct. Owners and agencies often bump up their rates on the large listing sites to offset the fees they are charged. For example, Airbnb charge up to 5% for advertising and that fee is often passed onto the traveler.
- When you book direct you’ll get personal contact with the manager or owner. Want to know what the waterfront is like? Is it weedy? What is the lakebed like underfoot? Is it busy with boats? These are just a few of the myriad questions we are asked every day when guests speak with us. When you book with an Online Travel Channel (OTC) you don’t get to ask those questions and more before committing to a booking.
- A manager and owner can help with your special needs. Do you need to know how many steps to the beach or whether a bathroom will accommodate a wheelchair? Your boat may need a minimum depth at the dock and a nearby boat launch. We can help with that too.
- Outside peak summer periods, managers and owners often have special offers. You’ll get insider information on deals and late availability offers by having direct communication with a cottage rental agency.
- Managers and owners know their destinations. The online travel channels list thousands of properties in many different areas. They don’t have the intimate knowledge of the local areas; where the best restaurants are or hidden hiking trails that only the locals know about.
Here’s a couple of tips to find the source of a listing on one of the big sites.
- Google the name. If a cottage has a name, you’ll probably find the #BookDirect source by just Googling it.
- ..and the listing text. Similarly, if you take a chunk of the text and put it into Google it is likely to come up with the original source of the listing.
- If the listing shows the lake or river where the cottage is located, try searching for ‘cottage to rent on xxx lake’.
It’s not difficult to #BookDirect. For a few minutes more of your time, you could save hundreds of dollars and have the peace of mind that you’ve found just the right spot for your vacation.