Homeaway is one of the best online vacation property rental booking websites, allowing you to choose from over 1 million listed properties. It also often allows you to book a vacation cheaper than with typical hotels or booking websites. With no booking fees, a two-way rating system, advanced security measures, and guarantees and insurance that protect both renters and guests, Homeaway is a great alternative to other similar websites. However, with so many listings, it can be overwhelming when trying to find a suitable property. And with a lack of verification of the identity of guests or property owners, it does pose some security risks.
Homeaway’s competitors address its core drawbacks. For example, Flipkey.com verifies its property owners, while Tripping.com has a specialized search engine. Wimdu.com and Roomorama.com wait 24 hours after you have approved your stay to release your booking payment, so you aren’t stuck with a misrepresented property.
Here is our list of the eight best websites like Homeaway, and what they can offer you.
Flipkey is one of the largest alternatives to Homeaway, with over 30,000 listings in 1100 cities around the world. One of Flipkey’s best attributes is its verification system, as all property owners are verified by the staff, making your chances of booking with a dishonest renter -- or being defrauded -- much lower than it is with other booking websites. Featuring over 5000 booking deals each day, Flipkey is one of the best rental property booking websites to find a great deal with! However, not all Flipkey listings can be booked online, as some require an email or phone call to the property owner. Flipkey is owned by travel giant Tripadvisor.
VRBO or “Vacation Rentals by Owner” is very similar to Homeaway because it is owned by them! With 800, 000 listings in over 100 countries, VRBO offers many full homes and apartments for rent, making it a great choice for families. VRBO also offers the same guarantees and insurance plans as Homeaway, so you can feel secure making payments and booking through their online service.
To learn more, check out our VRBO course.
Tripping.com differs from Homeaway and other rental property booking websites because it compiles the listings from multiple websites at once, rather than offering its own selection of listings. This way, you can search through more properties than what you get with any one website. You can filter available properties based on location, price, and tons of other components, seeing the best deals possible from any available websites. Tripping.com also offers exclusive discounts for some of these websites, so check it out today if you want to see as many listings as possible for the absolute best price!
If you want to learn more, visit our Tripping.com course.
Airbnb is one of Homeaway’s largest competitors, with listings in 34, 000 cities in over 190 countries. Serving over 60 million guests, with 2 million listings, Airbnb is one of the pioneers of the online vacation rental listing business. It is very similar to Homeaway, but has almost twice as many listings. Certainly the largest and most established online rental booking website, Airbnb is sure to have a listing for you. However, because of its reputation, Airbnb listings tend to be slightly more costly than other websites with fewer renters. Check out Airbnb’s website now to see if you can find a listing that’s right for you, or visit our Airbnb course to learn more.
Like Flipkey, Roomorama requires property owners to verify their identity, providing information that ensures they are not fraudulent or trying to scam other Roomorama users. Owners are required to provide things such as their personal identification, bills, and photos of themselves. In addition, before the stay, both parties are given a six-digit code they must exchange during check-in to verify identities. This gives the guest the opportunity to reject the property if it has been misrepresented before payment is made, by refusing to provide the code. If you think safety should be a top priority, then a site like Roomorama might be the one for you.
OneFineStay is a Homeaway alternative that takes a more invested approach in the quality of stay of each of its guests. The OneFineStay staff hand-pick the available rental properties, ensuring you will always choose a great location for your stay. With OneFineStay, you also never need to share spaces, as you sometimes do with properties listed on sites like Homeaway or Airbnb.
With OneFineStay, you also get advice about attractions and popular tourist destinations from locals in the area, so you can better plan what to do when you leave the property. Because the OneFineStay staff have recommended these locations, the number of available listings on OneFineStay is much more limited than other websites. However, you’re sure to be staying at a quality location, and are extremely unlikely to have a negative experience with any of the properties.
Wimdu is one of Homeaway’s biggest alternatives, with over 300, 000 listings in over 150 countries, serving over one million registered users. Similar to Homeaway, your stay is insured, and like Flipkey, your payment isn’t released to the property owner until 24 hours after your check-in. This leaves you plenty of opportunity to report any inconsistencies with the property and its advertisement – without losing your money. Wimdu has begun doing on-site checks of their properties, and does periodic spot checks to ensure the quality of the listings is maintained throughout the year. This makes sure the listings on Wimdu are always relevant.
With less than 250, 000 properties, 9flats is one of the smaller competitors to Homeaway. However, it provides some online rental property booking features that no other websites do. For example, 9flats offers multiple ways for you to carry out your secure payment, including using the anonymous Bitcoin currency. The hosts are also responsible for paying the booking fees – not the guest – so you can save money when you book with 9flats. 9flats also requires hosts to respond to rental requests within 24 hours, as well as holding off on payment until 24 hours after your check-in, like Flipkey and Wimdu.
Have you booked a rental property with one of these Homeaway alternatives, or had an experience you would like to share? Are there any other rental property booking websites that you've used that are alternatives to Homeaway that our users may want to know about? Share your story in our comments section, or spin us a tale on our Facebook or Twitter pages!
Learn how to use
Was something in this tutorial missing, confusing, or out of date? Or did it give you all the information you needed, and you just want to say "thanks"? We'd love to hear what you thought!