scale rentals conference barcelona

Three 2019 vacation rental industry trends: OTAs as property managers, property design as a booking factor, and the rise of business travelers.

oyo vacation homes

Here are three vacation rental industry trends that you may already be encountering in your market. Fellow RentalScaleup, feel free to add a comment if you agree or disagree.

Online platforms such as Airbnb, Tujia, OYO, and Rakuten have become property managers

luckey by Airbnb

Online travel agencies (OTAs) have launched several initiatives to control the quality of the supply that they are proposing to their users.

Airbnb uses property inspections by their team or by independent agents, combined with data points (e.g. list of mandatory amenities) to decide whether a property can qualify for Airbnb Plus and Airbnb Luxe.
Airbnb is also going further, by offering full-service property management, with its acquisition of Luckey Homes (now Luckey by Airbnb) and Luxury Retreats.

Just like Airbnb, Tujia is an online platform competing with Booking.com for travelers’ share of wallet.
In China, Tujia has its own property management company called Sweetome. Sweetome accounts for approximately 40,000 properties throughout Asia and 20%-25% of all Tujia’s transactions.
Tujia also controls its inventory, through inspections, franchising buildings where a Tujia employee acts as a property manager.

In Japan, Rakuten Lifull Stay has launched Rakuten STAY, a comprehensive branding and operational support service for property owners looking to rent out vacation properties or shared accommodation.

OYO’s hotel model has been about running properties and controlling pricing, availability, and quality of service. OYO offers urban short-term rentals on its main website OYO Rooms and vacation rentals through the sub-brands of its OYO Vacation Homes (e.g. BelVilla and DanCenter). BelVilla, for instance, has a pretty strong activity as a full-service property management company.

Property design as a major booking factor


Instagrammability – Photos are one of the biggest factors that influence guests into booking a property.
Generation Z takes to Instagram to decide on holiday destination (Booking.com research)
– From the article ” Travelers Are Willing to Splurge on Instagram-Friendly Experiences, Say Executives”, read this quote from Booking.com CEO Glenn Fogel: “Without doubt, demand is being driven by people taking photos.”
– Instagram-friendly accommodations are a big travel trend. A survey by Schofields, a British-based vacation rental home insurance provider, found 40% of those surveyed valued their travel stay due to “how ‘Instagrammable’ the holiday will be.”
– On this very blog, user cases of property managers using Instagram for vacation rental marketing.

Design is subjective, yet Airbnb uses checklists and human inspections to make it a criterion to qualify for Airbnb Plus and Airbnb Luxe.
Airbnb also merchandises these properties through beautifully designed websites pages. For instance, for Airbnb Plus, they hired an external designer and used hand-drawn illustrations for amenities to reflect the higher touch of this brand of hospitality.

Providers of urban short-term rentals, such as Sonder, have teams of interior designers who revamp the buildings that they take over, adding modernity and a touch of local identity.

Business and Bleisure travelers choosing short-term rentals, for short and long stays.

Magicstay short term rentals

Travel managers have a “duty of care” and can be personally sued if a fellow employee gets hurt at an accommodation that they provided. So, the question of trust in the supply is very important to travel managers.

Airbnb has an Airbnb for Work collection. To be included, properties have to match a specific list of amenities (e.g. self-check-in, free wifi, carbon monoxide detector), some guest review criteria (i.e. above 4.8 out 5) and have flexible cancellation policies.

Airbnb’s acquisition of UrbanDoor, which aggregates furnished apartments. The goal is to get more supply for Airbnb for Work and to get more extended stay bookings. Airbnb had tried long stays before (Airbnb Sublets), but this is a more serious effort, getting here supply and experience with corporate demands and legal complexities (e.g. tenant rights).

French startup MagicStay currently has 400,000 short-term rentals in its portfolio and targets a range of options in the corporate travel sector, including direct sales to individuals, travel managers, business travel agencies and events organizers.

Bleisure is a confirmed trend: According to research from Expedia, 40% of business trips turn into leisure (i.e. adding 1 more day or a weekend to visit a place).

This trend also touches upon the co-working, co-living trend, with new building format offering long stays where people can work and stay for several weeks in a row. For instance, Nomad House, Roam, AngkorHub.

These vacation rental industry trends are just a few of those hitting the existing actors. Come back to the blog for find more.


Rental Scale-Up

Thibault is the founder of Rental Scale-Up. He owns vacation rentals in St. Barths and Bali. He also leads innovative projects for companies within the vacation rental industry. Feel free to reach out to Thibaut Masson on Linkedin.


Table of Contents

Dear Short-Term Rental Industry Member, Join Our Scalers Network

Our Mission

We bring together short-term rental industry members to create valuable business and personal relationships. With the support of vetted peers, you can deliver on your next individual project goals faster, work in private groups to share doubts and successes, and become a new voice that shapes the conversation about our industry.

Whether you are a property manager, an owner, an industry vendor, a listing site operator, an investor, or a consultant, you can become a member of our Rental Scale-Up family.  As property managers and industry vendors may not have the same needs, some of our activities work by affinity groups. For instance, we have one version of the mastermind group sessions reserved for property managers and owners, and another one for vendors and listing sites. This way, you get feedback from peers who understand your pains and can get you faster to getting results.

1. Action, Transformation & Results

  • Mastermind Group for Property Managers & Owners: A mastermind group is a group of peers who meet to give each other advice and support. Facilitated by Rental Scale-Up. One session every 2 weeks with your group for a least 3 months.
  • Ask a Property Manager: Hosts, owners and property managers benefit from the experience of a successful property manager. (1 per month)
  • Groupwork: Report of the month co-creationA group of Scalers volunteer to write a report on the topic of the month. The result is published on RentalScaleUp.com, with full credits to each participants. (1 per month)
  • Mastermind Group for Industry Vendors & Listing Site Operators: A mastermind group is a group of peers who meet to give each other advice and support. Facilitated by Rental Scale-Up. One session every 2 weeks with your group for a least 3 months.
  • Ask an Expert Anything (for vendors and listing sites): An outside expert (e.g. a copywriter) shares their experience on a topic in an Ask Me Anything (1 per month)

2. News & Live Discussions

  • Investment & Deals  Discussion: Thibault and an M&A specialist/VC go over recent deals, M&A, investment rounds. Live, monthly.
  • Curated news: Save time. We read the news for you, curate the articles, and add our exclusive comments (weekly, in the Network Newsletter)
  • US Trends & Data Discussion: We analyze AirDNA’s latest report on US trends and zoom in on key markets (e.g. urban vs vacation rental markets).  Network members share what they see in the markets. Live, monthly.
  • Monthly Live online conference: Every month, our Network deep dives into a topic that is crucial to the short-term rental industry. 3 experts share their insights, best practices and answer your questions live.
  • European Trends & Data Discussion: We analyze AirDNA’s latest report on European trends and zoom in on key markets (e.g. UK, France, Italy, Spain).  Network members share what they see in the markets. Live, monthly.
  • Weekly Teardown with Thibault: Rental Scale-Up founder tears down one business news, every week, live.  Networker members share their views. No filter.

3. Facilitated Networking

  • Networking Booster: Meet new business partners and improve your networking game at an online event. Our team facilitates the event to make it easy for you to connect with your peers. (monthly)
  • Business Profile: Each new Scaler gets their profile featured in a dedicated article on RentalScaleUp.com. Get more visibility and authority.
  • In-Person Meetups: We meet in real life, either during a large vacation rental conference or in a city of our choice (quarterly)
  • Job Offers: Network members can not only see job offers but also post theirs. If desired, job offers can be extended to all Rental Scale-Up readers (free and paid).

4. Deals on industry software and products

  • Get Discounts: Enjoy exclusive deals brought to you by fellow Network members. Only in our Deals section. Monthly.
  • Offer Deals and Discounts: Network members may offer exclusive deals to fellow members, from discounts on stays at their properties to lifetime deals on vacation rental software. Only in our Deals section. Monthly.

Ready to join right now?

Scalers comes in 3 levels:

  • Scalers Insights, the limited, content-only version of the network. Great those who just want to get the insights but have less time for business transformation.
  • Scalers Network: Transform your business and get results. Get more things done. You get support, accountability, networking, training, and investment opportunities
  • Scalers Network+ : Avoid the hassle of quarterly payments and pick an annual membership. Qualify for bonuses good for your business (e.g. lead generation)

Not quite ready? Sign up for our free newsletter

Weekly insights straight into your email inbox.

On Key

Related Posts

airbnb 2022 summer release update

Airbnb 2022 Summer update release

On May 11, Airbnb will release its 2022 Summer update. Here’s what we can expect from it, as hinted by Brian Chesky, the company’s CEO and guessed by our Rental

Actionable insights

Take the Right Decisions for Your Rental Business thanks to our Weekly Industry Brief.

Exclusive newsletter for rental entrepreneurs.