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Airbnb vs VRBO: Is VRBO better than Airbnb?

Last updated on June 26th, 2023

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    Airbnb vs VRBO: Which Is Better?

    Airbnb and VRBO are two of the most popular vacation rental sites among both guests and property owners. When determining where to market your home, you may wonder which of these two approaches will result in greater results for your short-term rental business. As a guest, you may be curious to learn which of these platforms will match your individual needs and aid you in organising your ideal vacation.
    We compared Airbnb and VRBO and looked at their important features, differences, benefits, and downsides to help you decide.
    The major distinction between Airbnb and VRBO is what each has to offer.
    Let’s dissect it.
    Type of accommodation:

    The main distinction between these two platforms is the type of lodging they provide.

    • VRBO only provides stand-alone holiday houses.

    • Aside from stand-alone vacation houses, Airbnb also offers shared spaces and even hotel rooms. But, it usually does not provide a private room or other oddities such as camping. Although it began as a home-sharing concept, it currently hosts a wide range of lodgings.

    In other words, if you’re seeking a place to stay for a family reunion, both Airbnb and VRBO are viable options. Stick with Airbnb if you want a cheaper shared space or something out of the ordinary.

    Search feature

    Both Airbnb and VRBO provide similar, easy-to-use search features.

    Airbnb’s page looks a lot nicer and it contains some interesting visual components on the map, such as pricing and important locations. In comparison, VRBO’s page is clunky and out-of-date, with a banner ad.

    Aesthetics aside,  VRBO has a far superior filter and sort functionality than Airbnb. VRBO’s filters are also easier to use. “Pets allowed” is one of VRBO’s prominent search features, which can be extremely useful to many travelers. But, it’s buried deep in Airbnb’s menus under “house rules.”

    Omit, Airbnb restricts users’ ability to filter and search based on these simple factors.


    This is a no-brainer. As of September 2020, Airbnb had 5.6 million active listings, and while VRBO doesn’t disclose this figure, it’s likely smaller. The gap is instantly revealed while searching in the same area on both platforms.

    In the tiny town of Forks, Washington, for example, an Airbnb search yields 42 listings with a wide range of housing options and pricing.

    On VRBO, a comparable search yields only one active listing.

    This isn’t a coincidence. Omitting the sheer volume of listings available, Airbnb outnumbers the competition.

    Airbnb data

    Both vacation rental websites are booking platforms for property hosts. That is, you are booking a property “via Airbnb” rather than “an Airbnb.”

    This may make the booking process unusual for people used to staying in hotels.

    You must first make a booking “request,” which includes a price quote and a message to the host, for all VRBO and select Airbnb homes. Before approving or rejecting your request, the host considers your profile and past host ratings. To put it, the host must approve your reservation before it gets confirmed.

    If all that sounds like too much trouble, Airbnb offers a “quick book” option for some properties.


    Both Airbnb and VRBO allow the property manager to set the cancellation and change policies for the booking. Because these regulations differ from one property to the next, it’s impossible to say which one provides the most flexibility.

    Yet, there are distinctions in how these policies are mostly communicated, implemented, and exhibited; once again, Airbnb has a little advantage.

    Airbnb gives hosts the option of selecting from a variety of flexibility rules, ranging from “flexible” to “strict.” Each policy has a color-coded timeframe to make it easier for potential guests to understand.

    The restricted policies and clarification offered by Airbnb take some of the guesswork out of determining whether to click “book.” Based on the booking dates, it’s easy to determine when you can get a complete refund or lose your entire booking cost.

    VRBO’s policies aren’t as simple or precise. These options range from “no refund” to “14/7,” which indicates you’ll get a full refund if you cancel 14 days or more ahead of time, and a 50% refund if you cancel at least seven days ahead of time. These policies are like those of Airbnb, but they are more difficult to compare.

    Service Charges

    VRBO’s servicing fees are often less expensive. Although the cost of your rental will determine your final cost, a VRBO rental is less expensive than an Airbnb rental.

    A split-fee structure is available on Airbnb. This means that the host’s payment is slightly reduced by an Airbnb service fee, and guests are also to pay a service fee. Most hosts pay a 3% service fee, although some may pay more (like Airbnb Plus hosts).

    The majority of guests pay a service fee of roughly 14% of the total booking price. But, certain guest service costs might be as much as 20%!

    VRBO also charges a service fee, which ranges from 6 to 15% of the total cost of your reservation. Because VRBO  does not offer individual rooms, the host has no way of covering the total service cost. Because you’re more likely to pay a lower service cost with VRBO, it’s the best option.


    Viewing property details is just one option for Airbnb users to learn more about a potential house listed on the platform. Guests can also submit reviews after their stay, rating everything from the veracity of the listing’s description to the cleanliness of the property. The site’s review area is also searchable, so if you have a specific worry about Airbnb, you may filter reviews to get answers.

    VRBO also has a review feature where users can score their experience at a specific property. Homeowners can respond to a reviewer on the site, and their responses are already posted next to the review. This suggests that before commencing the process of making a reservation, you should. Users of VRBO can not only discover more about a property’s amenities but also about the experience of staying there. Homeowners can teach them a lot.


    There is no clear winner when it comes to Airbnb vs. VRBO. It depends on the type of trip you want to take. Because of the variety of rental types, the large host network, and the suite of “explore” services, Airbnb may be a better option for those looking for a more adventurous vacation. VRBO may be a better fit for you if you’re looking for a real holiday, a true escape for yourself. Of course, this isn’t a hard and fast rule, and each website has a variety of tools and rentals to assist you in planning your dream vacation.

    If you’ve ever considered renting out a house on Airbnb or VRBO, you’ll understand how tough it is to market your property. If you overprice your home, you will substantially lower the number of bookings. The majority of your competitors will lower your pricing and steal all your customers. So, the price is low, right? Price it too cheap, and you’ll be leaving money on the table, not making enough revenues to pay upkeep, and eventually becoming unprofitable.
    So, what should you do? There’s no need to worry since Airbtics provides historical, current, and anticipated rental data. You can also calculate your Airbnb revenue using the short-term rental calculator by multiplying your daily rate by the year-round occupancy rate.

    References| Travelfreak.com| Mashable.com

    READ MORE- Airbnb Squatters: All you need to know


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