As if the market for business travel wasn’t bad enough, traditional hotels and motels are facing new competition. It seems that business travelers are looking for the comforts of home when they are on the road. For many, this means renting a vacation home, an apartment or a condo.

Industry operator HomeAway says that that the market for second homes rented by business travelers is growing. To date, 1 in 10 business travelers has stayed in a vacation rental. Another 42% said that the option of renting a home while on a business trip appeals to them.

Here’s why:

  • Amenities such as kitchen/laundry rooms 69%
  • Cost-effective 58%
  • Home-like experience 49%
  • More space 44%
  • Bedrooms for family members 35%
  • Works well for extended stays 32%
  • More privacy 25%
  • Ideal for client entertaining 10%

Brian Sharples, chief executive officer of HomeAway, says, “f[or business travelers looking to cut costs, particularly for extended stays, vacation rentals provide real value.”  It may also be that business travelers are attaching vacations to their professional trips to cut costs and in these cases, renting a home for family members who have come along makes perfect sense. At the same time, the supply of rental properties is growing. The HomeAway survey found that 61% of consumers with vacation homes either already have or would consider renting their properties.

This new positioning of vacation homes requires ongoing promotional campaigns. At the same time, operators of extended stay motels will likely promote their benefits of their offerings.
[Source: Vacation Rentals Growing as Option for Business Travelers. HomeAway.com. 28 Sept. 2010. Web. 6 Oct. 2010]