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Hotels Cost 300% More Per Person Per Day Than Vacation Rentals: I'll Prove It!

Copyright (c) 2009-2018

The verdict on the true cost of spending your vacation in a hotel versus staying in a vacation rental is in, and I have the proof. For a family on a vacation, a vacation rental provides great accommodations for far less money. I just had a very unique personal experience that allowed me to test this: my own marriage two weeks ago in Maui, Hawaii, with friends and family in attendance.

We had a whole bunch of folks that came in from different parts of the globe to celebrate the event with us. Being the owner of a vacation rentals by owner website, I asked most of them where they were staying so I could compare notes. Our extended family stayed in a nice vacation rental right on the beach, a few stayed at resorts, and a few stayed at local hotels.

Here's the hard data on the major expense items for the trip, excluding rental car and airfare:

Hotel / Resort (Standard Hotel Room, Queen Bed, 1 Bathroom):

  • Maximum Occupants: 2

  • Per Person, Per Night Rate: $175.00

  • Per Day, Per Person Average Food: $125.00

  • Per Day "Resort Fee": $25.00

  • Per Day Parking: $20.00

  • Total Cost Per Person, Per Day: $322.50

  • Vacation Rental (2 BR / 2 BA Condominium on the Beach with Queen Sleeper Pull Out):

  • Maximum Occupants: 6

  • Per Person, Per Night Rate: $28.00

  • Per Day, Per Person Average Food: $65.00

  • Per Day "Resort Fee": $0.00

  • Per Day Parking: $0.00

  • Total Cost Per Person, Per Day: $93.00

  • The vacation rental was extremely economical for three reasons:

    1) It could accommodate a lot more people. A family of 5 could all fit into one place that cost on average $140.00 per night. That averages out to only $28.00 per person, per night. The Hotel and Resorts that others stayed in cost around $350.00 per night, and it could only fit two people in it, so it ran $175.00 per person, per night. That is a huge difference.

    2) Most resort hotels charged huge daily fees for parking and resort fees, which were non-negotiable. That added another $50/night in most cases. Most of my wedding guests found out about that as they were checking in (they neglect to tell you stuff like this when you make the reservation). It was too late then to re-book. No such issues with the vacation rental.

    3) Having meals in with the family was a very nice break from eating every meal out. It was a heck of a lot more economical as well.

    And, last, the other major expense item was the amount spent on food per day. My extended family took a short trip to the grocery store and had breakfast, lunch and a couple of dinners in over the course of the week that we were there. They went out for nice dinners a couple of times, but in a place like Maui where a basic entree can often cost $50.00 or more, eating some meals in for a family of five really starts to make some sense.

    As my fellow vacation rental owners are speaking with prospective renters that are having trouble deciding between your rental or a hotel, make sure you remind them about ALL of the costs associated with your typical resort hotel. Advising your renters as to the true cost of staying in a hotel may keep them with you at your vacation rental. Not to mention the many other benefits that we all know about!

    This article was originally published on Jon's blog.

    About The Author: Shop Amazon - Top Gift Ideas
    Jon Ludwig owns and operates the Find Vacation Home Rentals website, located at: You can also find vacation rental specials on his website.

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