Last-minute vacation rental bookings: 22 Last Minute Trends Report

The 2022 last-minute vacation rental bookings trends report is here! This week, getawayGoGo and Transparent have teamed up again to share a 2022 roundup of last-minute booking trends as well as suggestions on how to use this information. 

We look at booking lead time by…

Additionally, we compare some of the same values we measured in the previous blog article in collaboration with them six months ago with what they look like today.

Booking lead time by region

Here, we look at bookings from 4 global regions, within three different reservation windows including 0-7 days, 8-14 days, and 15 days or more. 

What did we find?

  1. Last-minute bookings (within 14 days of arrival) made up between 42% and 60% of all reservations in 2022.
  2. An average of 35.8% of last-minute bookings are made within just 7 days of arrival. 
  3. Latin America has the most last-minute reservations with over 60% of all bookings made within the last-minute window. 

How to use this information

  1. With over 40% of travel being planned 14 days before arrival vacation rental marketers need promotional and pricing strategies that specifically target last-minute travelers.
  2. What should be included in this strategy? Check out our guide, “9 Strategies for Filling Your Last-Minute Openings.”
  3. Given the high percentage of last-minute bookings, property management companies need to be prepared to handle last-minute reservations efficiently. They should have a streamlined booking process that makes it easy for customers to book at the last minute and ensure that their properties are ready for last-minute guests.

Booking lead time by ADR

We also compare the average daily rate (ADR) between the three booking windows of 0-7 days 8-14 days and 15+ days and the differences between last minute and 15 days+ ADR (average daily rates). For simplification, we have focused on the results for 2-bedroom homes in the US and Europe. 

What did we find?

  1. Both regions have only slightly lower ADR within the 0-14 day booking period.
  2. In the US, there was a 16.7% decrease in ADR from $234 to $199 per day 
  3. In Europe, there was a 10.9% decrease in ADR from $144 to $129 per day.  

How to use this information

  1. Managers should be prepared to offer lower prices for last-minute bookings to attract more customers and fill any vacant inventory. 
  2. Be proactive in correctly pricing to the market earlier to lessen last-minute openings.

Booking lead time by the length of stay

Next, let's compare the differences in the length of stay of last-minute vs. 15 days + before arrival travelers in the US and Europe. 

What did we find?

  1. US last-minute bookings were on average 2 days less than 15 days+ (4 days vs. 6 days)
  2. European last-minute bookings were 2 days less than 15 days+ (5 days vs. 7 days)

How to use this information.

  1. Since last-minute travelers are staying for shorter periods of time consider reducing your minimum stay requirements to maximize occupancy within the last-minute booking period. 
  2. Create promotional content specifically targeting shorter stays to last-minute travelers. 

Booking lead time by market type

Next, the frequency of last-minute bookings by market type (urban, beach/lake, rural, ski).

What did we find?

  1. Beach/Lake and Ski have the least last-minute bookings at 35%.
  2. Rural destinations hold the middle at 40% of last-minute bookings.
  3. Urban markets have the most last-minute reservations at 46%.

How to use this information.

  1. Focus more on advance booking promotions for beach and ski locations to attract customers who prefer to plan their vacations in advance to reduce last-minute openings and last-minute price concessions. 
  2. Adjust pricing strategies to reflect the demand patterns of each travel market. For instance, offer higher prices for advance bookings for beach and ski locations and lower prices for last-minute bookings for urban markets. This can help avoid overbooking or underbooking to optimize occupancy rates.

United States and Europe in 2022

In today's final sections, we will address the question of the number of unbooked nights in the United States and Europe in 2022, as well as the revenue lost due to these unoccupied nights.

What did we find?

  1. In the United States, there were 613,000,000+ unbooked, available nights in 2022.
  2. In Europe, there were 248,000,000+ unbooked, available nights in 2022.
  3. The combined value of unbooked nights (2 Bedroom ADR) = $127,537,152,693.

How to use this information.

  1. Conduct a comprehensive analysis of your unbooked nights, their value, and the trends associated with them. While factors such as seasonality, pricing, marketing, property quality, owner resistance, and reservation team training can impact occupancy levels, identifying controllable factors and implementing changes can have a direct impact on revenue.
  2. Increase exposure to your last-minute openings by adding additional booking channels including getawayGoGo – a last-minute marketplace.
  3. Increase your competitiveness by subscribing to local pricing data from Transparent 

How do last-minute vacation rental bookings compare to six months ago?

Six months ago, 50% of Latin American listings saw a booking lead time of two weeks or less, and now that number appears to have risen to 60%. Europe sees the same effect, and 11% more listings are seeing booking lead times of two weeks or less than before. Similarly, the USA has increased its last-minute bookings by 10%.

Urban markets have seen the largest shift amongst market types in booking lead time. With 91% of the market experiencing last-minute bookings, this year we see that number drop to 46% of listings.

Last year, the length of stay by days was approximately half a day to a full day more than six months ago. In other words, the length of stay in the USA has gotten slightly shorter. As for Europe, the length of stay has decreased by one or two days in each of the different reservation windows

Optimize your inventory to capitalize on last minute bookings!

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