Renting a vacation house this summer? Here’s when Vrbo says to book by

Happy family having fun at barbecue backyard party
Adobe

There’s a lot to be said for a little spontaneity when you’re on vacation. But until your down time actually starts, it’s all about preparation. If you’ve been thinking about staying in a vacation rental this year, Vrbo just broke down this year’s suggested booking deadlines ahead of the most popular travel holidays.

According to a report in Travel + Leisure, Vrbo’s data says you should already be locking down your bungalow for one of the busiest travel days of the year: Memorial Day. It falls on May 27 this year, and travelers who were hoping to avoid steep competition for rentals on that day should have booked by April 15. That’s not to say that you can’t still find a good room right now, but Vrbo’s data shows that availability will fall off after that date.

MORE: These are the 20 cheapest places to travel in 2024

You’ve still got a few weeks to plan an Independence Day getaway, though. The weekend of July Fourth is one of the busiest times for travel, and Vrbo’s data says vacationers should find a spot by no later than May 17. Looking ahead to Labor Day 2024, which falls on Sept. 2, Vrbo recommends booking by July 22 to land your dream end-of-summer getaway. (We looked ahead, and this luxury beach house on Oregon’s Pacific coast is still available for Labor Day.)

dining room with a beach view in Oregon
Vrbo

Vrbo also recently called out some of its most popular locations for summer rentals and it appears the classics never go out of style. The Bahamas are still popular, as are perennial Mexican hotspots like Cozumel and Cancun. If you’re staying stateside, the hottest locations seem to be South Carolina’s Hilton Head Island and Florida’s Panama City Beach.

Of course, finding a room is only half the battle. Those deadlines to book a rental just happen to fall on months when airfare is expected to be the highest — especially in May and June. But timing your purchase can also help save you headaches here. If you book your flight more than 21 days in advance of your trip, you’re in prime time for the best fares. There are other ways to save on airfare, too, such as booking a flight in the early morning as opposed to the afternoon.

Holiday & Seasonal, News, Tips & Advice, Travel
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About the Author
Tod Caviness
Tod covered everything from nightlife to Orlando's literary scene (yes, it has one) during his 11 years with the Orlando Sentinel. These days, he's a freelance journalist and recovering poet who lives in Central Florida with his lovely wife, two brilliant kids and one underachieving dog. Visit Scripps News to see more of Tod's work.

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