What’s happened to the American vacation? Last year 41% of Americans took NO vacation. Should vacation rental owners be worried?
According to a Skift survey, the American vacation is in decline and the majority of Americans will take little or no vacation in 2016. In fact, 41% will take no vacation at all! This reinforces the trend seen at the end of 2014 when 42% took no vacation. On the face of it, when the market at home is apparently shrinking like this it’s bad news for anyone in the business of providing vacation rental properties.
Fewer vacations bigger spend
But we have been here before and all may not be as glum as it seems. We’re not doubting the figures or the research on the American vacation. But readers of this blog may remember a piece on the American vacation back in July 2015. Then, although it looked as if they’d take less vacations, predications were they would spend more.
Whether that proves to be the case we may have to wait and see. But there are steps you can take to help make up any shortfall. Perhaps you don’t live in America but in another country where, for whatever reasons, your home market is shrinking too? Less of your compatriots are taking holidays in the mother country? If so, this may be relevant to you too.
When faced with a shrinking market there is one thing to do (besides going for a bigger share of a shrinking pie): attract new guests. Guests from overseas. Many American owners already market to and accommodate foreign guests. If you don’t already, now is the time to reach out.
How we can help
First, you’ll need to make sure that things will run as smoothly as possible and that’s where Homes and Rooms can help. Because we operate worldwide in America, Europe and way beyond, our services include the facilities to deal directly with foreign guests. So, for instance, you’ll find our Currency Payment Administrator a huge support.
Back in August 2014 we were urging our subscribers to take full advantage of the possibilities offered by foreign guests. What we said then still holds true:
‘If you wish to tap the huge potential offered by foreign visitors, you need to have no fear of handling fluctuating exchange rates or multiple currencies. With our Currency/Tax Administrator, you can flexibly manage almost any scenario regardless of where your property is or where visitors are from. And by choosing to automate the system, there is no need to constantly check rates and make adjustments as exchange rates shift. Your foreign guests will see guest-friendly quotes in their currency. And you will be paid in the currency of your choice with no need to ever deal with foreign exchange.’
Our CEO and founder Barry Sacks recently took his own advice. As a toe in the water, he put his Florida vacation rental on HomeAway Asia specifically to reach the huge Japanese market. He’s already had his first genuine guest inquiry and is hoping many more will follow.
Research the most likely visitors
Like Barry, you may wish to concentrate on a single market. Do your research and find out which other nationals come to your country. Perhaps choose the largest group to concentrate on. If, say, Germans are the largest group regularly visiting then focus your additional marketing and listings there.
So, until the American vacation makes a comeback, maybe it’s time to brush up on your international greetings and goodbyes? Try these: Adiós. Aloha. Arrivederci. Ciao. Auf Wiedersehen. Au revoir. Sayonara!