Since March 2020, we have all most likely spent more time in between the four walls of our homes than ever before. All of which has led most people to the same Google search: ‘How to go about renting a holiday home‘ just to get a change of scenery!

There is nothing like the kids’ online schoolwork, constant Zoom meetings and family get-togethers happening all under the same roof, to have you ready to pack up for vacation. And yet, dreaming about your own peace of paradise isn’t exactly far-fetched.

Renting a holiday home is a great way to create new memories, unwind and finally, exhale. However, before you go booking a vacation home for your family, let’s get you up to speed on what it means to rent a holiday home.

Holiday home with a view
Holiday home with a view

Reasons why you should be renting a holiday home

If you are in desperate need of a much-deserved break, there is no time better than the present to begin looking for a holiday home. Having your personal little ‘home away from home’ will quickly prove to your favourite pastime.

In fact, here are some of the top reasons why you should rent a holiday home:

A quick energy boost

Did you know that there are numerous health benefits involved with taking a holiday? It is revealed that not only will it help reduce stress but improve your cardiovascular health. Renting a home is the perfect way for both your body and mind to recharge.

Even if you are still bringing your work and the kids online schooling with you, being in a new environment will give you that energy boost you’ve been looking for!

There are many options available

Every single day new homes are being put up for vacation rental – and the prices are competitive too!

So, take advantage of the plethora of offerings at your disposal.

Whether you are considering renting a home on an idyllic beach, looking for a mountain range vacation or city adventure away, there are numerous options on offer!

Holiday planning becomes easier

One of the number one perks of renting a holiday home is knowing that you will have your holiday booked and ready – in advance. This means that you will now have more time to work on your itinerary and researching what local attractions are on offer.

Essentially, once the hassle of actually finding and securing a place is over you have more time to throw yourself into the more fun details of your trip.

Two questions to ask yourself before renting a home

Before we do a deep dive into the ins-and-outs of renting, it is crucial that before you begin searching for your dream location, you ask yourself the following.

What is my budget?

Knowing how much you are willing to put down towards renting a holiday home is an essential part of your hunt. Your budget will also help determine the type of holiday home that you will be looking for.

That being said, keep in mind that there will most likely be utility costs involved. You should also factor in cleaning fees that may be included in the fees.

What are your necessities and what are luxuries?

When considering renting a holiday home, it is essential that you create a list of must-haves and nice-to-haves. Understanding what you really need versus the things that you want will help you navigate the market.

For example, under your essential category, you might put the safety of the neighbourhood. Other necessities may be adequate parking space, uncapped WIFI, access to public transport and extra living space for the entire family and guests.

Your luxuries could be that you want to be in close proximity to the beach, that you have an onsite dryer unit and that you have a private swimming pool.

Everyone’s list will look different but putting these needs on paper will help you narrow down your search. It will also help you establish what you are willing to pay a little extra for and what you are willing to sacrifice.

Karekare Luxury Escape
Karekare Holiday Home

Types of holiday homes

The tourism industry has come a long way over the last decade! Now more than ever, we are seeing several holiday accommodation types dominate the markets. And while these developments have been exciting, they can easily become overwhelming.

Thankfully, we have explored the various holiday home types to help you narrow down your search to help you find your perfect ‘home away from home’.

Bed and breakfast

You most likely know this accommodation option as a B&B. They are oftentimes a smaller residence that has a hotel-styled bedroom that is open to guests. Unsurprisingly, it is one of the most popular accommodation types as it is more affordable and has a much-loved homely atmosphere.

Guest house

As the name suggests, this is where you have the option to rent out a private home that has been converted into guest accommodation. This option is also great for families looking for a secluded space that is cordoned off just for them.


If you are looking for a more peaceful retreat, renting out a villa is ideal for you. While renting out this holiday home is slightly more expensive, you will most likely have a larger space that accommodates a bigger family. You will also have your own kitchen, bedrooms, dining areas and so much more.


You also have the option to book out parts of a lodge. This is a thriving rental option in the industry at the moment too. What is great about this accommodation type is that you can choose whether or not you want a space that is designed for long stays or short getaway trips – the options here are endless.


While apartment living used to mean that you are were staying in a significantly smaller space, apartments have gotten a lot more spacious. There are a number of apartments that can house full families and will meet most of your needs. Choosing this option means that you will also have your own private space including a kitchen, bathroom and more that are not shared with other guests!

Unique vacation rentals

Another great thing about vacation rentals is that there are still really unique options available. From treehouses to crate containers, airstreams and log cabins. All it takes is a bit of searching through the various vacation rental sites to find the best hidden gems.

Unique vacation rentals
Unique vacation rentals

Things to look out for when renting a holiday home

Now that we have looked at the various accommodation types, it is important that you keep the following in mind before you put down a deposit.

Proximity to the city centre

You need to consider how close you would like to be to the city. Are you looking to escape the concrete jungle or be closer to it?

Location, location, location

One of the best parts about renting a holiday home is that you can choose a location that appeals to you and your needs. You have the option of choosing a home either by the seaside, the bush, the mountains or the city.

Keep in mind that each location will have different activities on offer, given its geographical location. So, consider the types of activities you would like to be engaging in before you choose a location. 

Nearby facilities

As much as we all love a little seclusion, it is important that you stay in close proximity to essential facilities. This includes your emergency services as well as nearby shops. This will contribute to the seamless nature of your stay.


This point cannot be stressed enough. Wherever you decide to rent a holiday home, keep in mind that you would ideally like to be near local police forces. You might also like to look up the crime rates in the area of your holiday home too.

Rental size

Rental size is crucial as you need to consider what your needs are. Is this a family home where the extended family will be present? Do you need to have an on-site home office space? Are you able to bring your pets along?

Looking at the size of your rental will ultimately determine whether or not your lifestyle will match the space.

Renting legislation

It goes without saying that you will be signing a contract when renting a holiday home, which means understanding the legalities involved. Familiarise yourself with all of the terms and conditions, what’s covered what isn’t, rules and agreements etc.

Renting a vacation home
Rent a vacation home with friends

Reputable vacation rental sites

Renting a holiday home means that you get to explore all of the incredible homes on offer. That being said, it is important that you always make use of reputable sites to avoid having your personal information illegally captured or being scammed. Always be careful when you are on the internet!

The great thing about the below-mentioned websites is that you can customize your search based on location, budget, and several other factors.

Here are a few accredited, safe and reputable holiday home renting websites available:

  • (narrow down your search to apartments, holiday homes or villas)
  • Agoda Homes (you have the option to search for homes, private stays or monthly stays)
  • Expedia (narrow down your search for vacation rentals)
  • VRBO (their options work best for families or groups of four or more looking for a long-term stay)
  • Plum Guide (they personally vet every single property, so you know that you’re getting a quality vacation home – there is, however, less choice)
  • Airbnb (they offer a hosted experience and have some great properties around the world)
  • Homestay (similar to Airbnb)

If you’re specifically looking for eco-friendly, sustainable holiday rentals, check out the below websites:

  • Fairbnb.Coop (a cooperative platform that puts people over profit by reinvesting in the communities)
  • (book eco-friendly hotels and experiences)
  • I Like Local (support local curated experiences)
  • Ecobnb (access green hotels, unique houses, and organic farmhouses)
  • Hipcamp (book tent camping, RV parks, cabins, treehouses, and glamping)
  • Zerobnb (collects sustainable homes from Airbnb and features them on its website)
  • Green Getaways (Luxury cottages, tiny houses, treehouse accommodation, eco-resorts and lodges, and glamping in Australia)
  • (budget-friendly and sustainable alternative)
  • Holiable (lists homes, restaurants, and activities)
  • Green Pearls (focuses on accommodation that gives back)

Apart from renting a holiday home, you could also consider house sitting as an option. Read our post about a Summer of House Sitting in Europe.

Make sure that you use this blog as a guide whilst renting a holiday home and you will be in for one of your best adventures yet!

Not sure about renting a holiday home? Here’s our other accommodation guides


  • Travel Dudes

    I'm sure you've had similar experiences I had whilst traveling. You're in a certain place and a fellow traveler, or a local, tip you off on a little-known beach, bar or accommodation. Great travel tips from other travelers or locals always add something special to our travels. That was the inspiration for Travel Dudes.