VRBO.com Ultimate Guide: Listing Your Vacation Rental on VRBO

Listing your vacation rental on Vrbo expands your audience globally.

Vrbo, one of the industry’s largest platforms, attracts numerous property owners. Discover the process of listing and optimizing your properties on Vrbo.

Outperform your competitors and boost your net profit. As a host, you want maximum exposure for your property, and listing on Vrbo can achieve that. Vrbo, one of the largest OTAs, receives 3 million monthly website visits.

Will a Vrbo listing boost your booking rate? How can you differentiate your listing from competitors?

Continue reading to explore Vrbo’s offerings and learn how to optimize your listing for attracting your ideal guests.

How do Vacation Rental Owners and Property Managers Use Vrbo?

Vrbo serves as a platform for vacation rental owners and property managers. Owners and managers create hosting accounts on Vrbo. They list their properties and make them visible to potential guests.

Guests, on the other hand, create guest accounts on Vrbo. They browse and select from the available rental homes on the platform. When guests want to book a vacation rental, they use Vrbo’s website. They make the reservation and payment through the platform.

Vrbo processes the payment securely. After that, Vrbo transfers the payment to the property owner’s bank account.

Vrbo Listing Creation: How Much Does It Cost?

Two Types of Vrbo Listing Fees: Which is Right for You?

When it comes to Vrbo listing fees, hosts have two options to consider. The choice between these fees depends on your estimated annual income and aligning it with your business needs.

  • 1. One-time Annual Fee: Vrbo offers an annual subscription fee of $499 for subscription customers. This fee covers all bookings received throughout the year.
  • 2. Fee per Booking: Alternatively, hosts can opt for the “pay per booking” fee structure. For each booking received, hosts pay a 5% commission fee to Vrbo, along with a 3% credit card processing fee.

Both Vrbo listing fee options come with their advantages. If you rent your property consistently throughout the year, the one-time fee may be the better choice. However, it’s crucial to ensure that the bookings you receive will exceed the cost of the fee. On the other hand, if your listings are active only during specific periods, the fee per booking option is likely more suitable for your situation.

Airbnb vs Vrbo: Which Benefits Your Business More?

Graphic source: ‘Awning’

When it comes to choosing between Airbnb and Vrbo for your vacation rental business, both platforms share similarities but also have their own distinct features. This can make the decision challenging for hosts.

Airbnb offers a diverse range of accommodation options, including houses, villas, mansions, and even shared properties. On the other hand, Vrbo focuses on more traditional accommodations like suburban houses, apartments, cabins, and lake houses. Vrbo strictly prohibits any form of shared letting.

Airbnb caters well to smaller groups and solo travelers, while Vrbo attracts larger groups and families on vacation. Vrbo listings are particularly suited for longer stays, whereas Airbnb tends to be more popular for shorter stays.

In terms of fees, Airbnb charges a single service fee to most hosts, while Vrbo provides two fee payment options. Additionally, Airbnb offers a wider variety of vacation rentals, including entire properties and shared accommodations, while Vrbo maintains stricter guidelines on the types of properties allowed, excluding shared letting entirely.

Listing your property on both platforms can provide a boost to your business. However, it’s crucial to consider the type of rental property you have and your rental frequency. If you prefer renting out a room or a section of your property, Airbnb is more suitable. On the other hand, if you only plan to rent out your entire property during specific times of the year, Vrbo would be the better choice.

What Are the Advantages of Using Vrbo?

Listing your vacation home on Vrbo comes with distinct benefits. Vrbo offers flexibility in service fees, allowing hosts to choose their preferred fee structure. Additionally, Vrbo provides extensive exposure by displaying all listings on other sites within the Expedia Group.

One limitation of Vrbo is its restriction on property types. Only entire houses, apartments, and cottages are allowed on the platform. This may not be suitable if you want to rent out individual rooms or sections of your property. Furthermore, Airbnb currently offers a more comprehensive guest experience through their Experiences program compared to Vrbo.

How Can I Contact Vrbo?

If you have any inquiries about your Vrbo account or listings, you can reach out to the Vrbo customer service team at 1-877-202-4291 (U.S.) or visit help.vrbo.com.

What Do You Need to Create a Vrbo Listing?

Before creating a listing on Vrbo, gather the following information:

  • Property address
  • Basic details about the property (type, size, number of rooms, etc.)
  • Digital photos showcasing the property
  • Rates (nightly rate, cleaning fee, etc.)
  • Banking information (bank name, account type, and account number)

Creating a Vrbo Listing: Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Access your Vrbo account and click on the option to create a new listing.
  2. Select the appropriate property type from the provided list of options.
  3. Fill in the details of your vacation rental, including the number of bedrooms and bathrooms.
  4. Enter the physical address of your vacation rental.
  5. Provide contact information, including a phone number where Vrbo can reach you.
  6. Complete the uploading process to finalize your listing.
  7. Once completed, your vacation rental listing will be ready to go live!

Optimizing Your Vrbo Listing: Top Tips

Creating a Vrbo listing is just the first step. To maximize your success, follow these precise tips for optimizing your Vrbo listing:

  1. Upload captivating photos: Use stunning photos that showcase your property’s best features and the surrounding neighborhood. Highlight key selling points to attract potential guests.
  2. Craft a compelling title: Create a title that grabs attention and highlights your property’s strengths. Use descriptive language to make it stand out in search results.
  3. Write an enticing description: Showcase what makes your vacation rental unique, emphasizing features, amenities, and the overall experience guests can expect. Be honest and use positive wording.
  4. Maintain a fast response rate: Respond promptly to all messages, including booking inquiries. This shows your attentiveness and can improve your listing score and search ranking.
  5. Enable online bookings and payments: Provide the convenience of online bookings and payments to attract more guests, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  6. Collect positive reviews: Encourage guests to leave positive reviews by ensuring excellent communication, cleanliness, and responsiveness. Address any guest concerns before they post reviews.
  7. Keep your calendar updated: Avoid double-bookings and cancellations by regularly updating your online calendar to reflect upcoming bookings.
  8. Offer deals and special discounts: Attract guests during low seasons and holidays by providing competitive deals. Monitor competitors’ pricing and specials to adjust your offers accordingly.
  9. Verify your location: Increase credibility by adding your rental’s verified address to your listing. Vrbo protects user privacy by displaying a rough location on the map rather than the exact address.

By implementing these optimization strategies, you can enhance the visibility and appeal of your Vrbo listing, leading to increased bookings and overall success.

How to Successfully Market Your Listing to Gen Z and Millennial Travelers

With millennials and Generation Z comprising 75% of the short-term rental market by 2022, it’s crucial for hosts to effectively market to these younger demographics. While it may require some new strategies, marketing to millennials and Gen Z is achievable with proper planning.

  • Establish an online presence: As digital natives, millennials and Gen Z spend significant time on social media. To attract younger travelers, maintain an active online presence. Utilize visually-oriented platforms like Pinterest and Instagram. 
  • On Pinterest, showcase your rental with appealing photos and relevant hashtags. 
  • On Instagram, share pictures and stories of your property. Active social media accounts enhance guest reach, build credibility, and foster trust.
  • Tell a captivating story through photos: Your Vrbo listing photos should paint a compelling story for potential guests. Depict the experience they can expect during their stay. Include images of amenities, the surrounding area, and local attractions. Maintain a cohesive style by using consistent filters and visual aesthetics.
  • Emphasize experiences, not just amenities: Millennials and Gen Z value experiences. Highlight the unique experiences your rental offers to attract bookings. If your property is situated near a mountainside or a lake, mention activities like kayaking, swimming, or hiking. Collaborate with local businesses to provide special discounts, fostering a memorable and well-rounded experience for guests.
  • Adopt an eco-friendly approach: Younger travelers prioritize eco-friendly accommodations. Implement small sustainable practices like installing solar panels, smart thermostats, and LED light bulbs. Promote these eco-friendly features to encourage a “greener lifestyle.” If you partner with local businesses that contribute to environmental or community initiatives, highlight those as well.


In conclusion, listing your vacation rentals on Vrbo opens up a world of opportunities for reaching a global audience and maximizing your bookings. By following the comprehensive guide provided, you can optimize your Vrbo listings to attract potential guests and stand out from the competition. From uploading stunning photos and crafting compelling titles to offering unique experiences and maintaining an eco-friendly approach, each step contributes to enhancing your rental’s appeal and increasing its chances of success.

To further elevate your vacation rental business, consider partnering with Vacation Home Help, a trusted provider of Airbnb cleaning services. With their expertise in maintaining cleanliness and ensuring guest satisfaction, Vacation Home Help can help you streamline your operations and provide an exceptional experience for your Airbnb guests. Take advantage of their professional services and focus on delivering memorable stays for your guests, while Vacation Home Help takes care of the cleaning responsibilities. Visit their website today to learn more and start optimizing your Airbnb hosting experience.

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