COVID-19 is driving more families to choose alternative lodging when they need emergency housing, and hosts and rental companies alike are meeting the need.
The pandemic created a new challenge in our industry, but our team was ready. We’re still busy making sure families find a safe place to land after the disruption caused by an unexpected disaster, but what we’re booking looks different these days. More families are asking for safer options when they are displaced. That’s where alternate lodging comes in.
Alternate lodging includes vacation rentals, travel trailers, and any other kind of rental you may find on sites like Airbnb or Vrbo. These properties have been our solution for the growing demand for safety, and the big players continue to step up their game. These rentals can be an excellent choice because guests are able to stay for a short period of time, have space for their entire family and, in many cases, even bring their pets along – all while feeling safely distanced.
Hosts and rental companies are stepping up their efforts to increase cleanliness.
The great news for our customers is that we’re seeing real change related to cleanliness. We’ve experienced more hosts declining same-day bookings to ensure the property is properly sanitized. In the past, they would rush to get the next guest checked in. Some hosts are offering regular cleaning services throughout the stay as an option to guests. We are even seeing disposable masks, hand sanitizer and surface wipes to use free of charge.
Online rental platforms are rolling out mandatory cleaning processes and holding hosts accountable. One example is the list of elevated standards recently shared by Airbnb. Hosts must be fully committed to these COVID-19 safety and cleaning protocols and failure to comply can result in the host’s account being suspended – or even removed – from the platform.
Vrbo enables the host to showcase the cleaning practices at their property. Airbnb is putting customer feedback at the top of each listing when it mentions cleanliness. These features give the THD booking team and the renter peace of mind when we offer a property – not only does the host claim the space is clean, but so do the guests.
THD was ready for the shift.
We are fortunate to have a dedicated alternative lodging department at Temporary Housing Directory. The team was established a year before the pandemic, so we already knew the ins and outs of this type of rental. Unlike hotel properties and national chains that have centralized systems and processes, there are unique considerations that come with alternative lodging. It’s a more fragmented space that needs the expertise of a professional that understands how to navigate it smoothly.
Our alternative lodging team enabled us to scale our knowledge quickly and meet the growing demand of our customers. Not only can we help families feel supported in their time of need with our already-convenient processes, but they can have peace of mind knowing we’ve provided a unique solution that keeps their family’s safety front and center.
To learn more about our team and offers, contact us at 800-817-3220