Shortage of local summer vacation rentals as travelers prefer cabins over hotels


ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — There is a shortage of vacation summer rentals as travelers are skipping the hotels and long flights this summer, and instead taking the family to lake-front cabins and campgrounds for vacations, according to experts.

Finding a summer vacation rental will be challenging this summer, as many agencies in the Finger Lakes region, like Ferryland Cottage Rental, are 100% booked for summer months.

“It is a super, super busy time. Busier than I ever remember it being to be honest,” said Jan Ferry-Axman, owner Ferryland Cottage Rentals-Finger Lakes Vacation Rentals.

Ferry-Axman has been renting cottages for over ten years, but this year she thinks COVID-19 is pushing more families to secluded destinations like the finger Lakes. 

“People wanted to get out of the house and they realized, even during COVID, that a standalone vacation rental is a little safe option because nothing is public about it,” said Ferry-Axman.

Demand for vacation rentals is outpacing supply nationwide. According to a 2021 Trend Report from Vrbo, a vacation rental marketplace, 82% of families surveyed have travel plans for 2021. Vacations near lakes and campgrounds are most popular, as Vrbo saw an increase of nearly 25% for cabins and chalets. 

Experts with AAA, say trends from the pandemic are pushing travelers to stay closer to home and away from crowded hotels. 

“I think that got really popular with families, where people said you know what, this is a great way to vacation. The whole family gets their rental facility or a whole house to use rather than everybody cramming into a hotel room. So that trend really kicked off last year,” said Elizabeth Carey, director of public relations AAA western and central New York.

This trend is great for property owners, many of which are making up lost revenue from last year’s season. But for travelers looking for a last-minute vacation, the search could be difficult. 

“A little Trickey to find a place right now. You could look for some of the unique alternatives, inns bed and breakfast. I see a lot of vacation homes that have a lot of odds days left you know 3 days here and 2 days there, but you have to see the whole month instead of putting in the dates you want,” said Ferry-Axman.

According to AAA, travel by car is the most popular way to travel this summer.

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