Final week, I wrapped up a pleasant Vacasa trip rental in Girdwood, Alaska (right here’s the itemizing). We’ve written quite a few occasions concerning the partnership between Wyndham and Vacasa (See: Wyndham Vacasa: worth is actual!). It is among the most original award partnerships within the house, offering the chance to make use of resort factors to guide distinctive trip rental properties. In some ways, I love this partnership, however there are some issues I don’t get pleasure from about trip leases. I feel it’s value being conscious of each ends of the spectrum of this partnership as that is positively a device to have in your belt, nevertheless it is smart to handle expectations.
Issues I hate about Vacasa trip leases
30-day cancellation coverage
This simply stinks: Vacasa trip leases booked with Wyndham Rewards factors must be canceled 30 days prematurely or they’re completely nonrefundable. Once I guide accommodations, they’re sometimes cancellable till 1 or 2 days prematurely and plenty of airline applications supply free or low-cost flight award cancellation. Against this, I actually hate the inflexibility of a Vacasa rental booked via Wyndham Rewards. With two younger youngsters, I do know that one or each might get sick and I’d be caught forfeiting all of the factors if we would have liked to alter plans inside a month of arrival. This makes me hesitant to guide Vacasa far prematurely (although ready till close-in means having fewer choices from which to decide on).
I want that there was some technique to cancel a bit nearer to arrival both with out penalty or with a sufficiently small penalty to not be overly punitive.
Variance in high quality
I’ve had excellent experiences up to now with my Vacasa trip leases (together with the place I stayed close to Pigeon Forge and one other property the place I booked a money keep), however I’ve learn sufficient opinions to know that high quality varies. That must be anticipated with regard to trip leases since they’re sometimes individually owned (Vacasa simply manages the rental properties), however nonetheless I discover it to be a weak spot.
For example, once we discovered some leftover rooster wings on the grill at our Vacasa rental, we didn’t have the choice to “name the entrance desk” and have housekeeping deal with it. If we didn’t need to danger waking as much as a bear on the porch, we simply needed to clear it up ourselves.
My greatest situation with inconsistency is the inconsistency of cleanliness. Our most up-to-date Vacasa rental was a big 4-bedroom dwelling that regarded very spectacular at first look. And general, it was fairly good and well-kept. Nonetheless, we regarded extra intently, we discovered the locations the place consideration to element fell brief like additional mud underneath beds or a pillowcase that had a blood spot on it, and many others.
Once more, that’s not distinctive to Vacasa leases, nevertheless it stands out in opposition to my typical award journey experiences as a result of I principally use factors for accommodations, the place I can name for help if one thing doesn’t meet expectations. That’s not really easy to do with a trip rental.
Whenever you need assistance, it isn’t instantly-available
In circumstances the place you find yourself needing assist, it may be a problem because you’re caught ready for somebody to reply.
For example, we arrived early on the property in Girdwood, Alaska and the cleaners have been nonetheless cleansing. We requested if we might drop off our luggage and so they had no downside with that (We have been clearly taking some danger since our rental hadn’t but formally began and if one thing have been lacking once we returned we’d have probably had no recourse. It wasn’t my thought to drop luggage).
Once we returned after the assigned check-in time, we adopted the check-in directions we had acquired by way of e mail and textual content message, which stated to go to a visitor key lock field and enter a code to get the entrance door key. The issue is that the code didn’t work. I attempted the important thing quite a few occasions and it failed repeatedly. After 3 or 4 failures in a row, it appeared prefer it alarmed (it beeped a bunch and stopped permitting code enter for a minute or two), however then it “cleared” and we have been in a position to proceed attempting to do the identical factor whereas anticipating totally different outcomes for lengthy sufficient to “journey” it once more.
I texted Vacasa. I received a fairly fast response and so they stated that they might verify with their native staff and get again to me.
In the meantime, all of our luggage have been locked inside the home since we had left them with the housekeeping staff earlier.
Fortunately, the check-in e mail additionally included a key code for the storage door. That code labored, so we have been in the home shortly thereafter because of the storage door.
Nonetheless, I by no means did hear again from Vacasa that first evening. The following morning, I messaged Vacasa once more, explaining that we might simply use the storage door to enter and exit however that I needed to observe as much as see if they’d heard something from the native staff. They responded about an hour later to inform me that they might observe up and inside an hour thereafter somebody confirmed up on the door to attempt to determine the lock field. She tried the identical code that I did (sorry for not offering a spoiler alert earlier, however now you already know that didn’t work). Finally she was in a position to free the important thing and supply it to us to make use of, however she couldn’t get the lock field working, both.
That was a minor annoyance since we had the storage door code, nevertheless it illustrated the truth that it was all on Vacasa to facilitate a reference to the native crew and so they clearly dropped the ball on that the primary evening.
Paperwork might use some readability
One factor I feel Vacasa might enhance upon is explaining what required paperwork you’ll have to submit as you’re making the reservation. In a few rental cases, it has been required that I e-sign a separate rental settlement after reserving and ship it again by way of e mail earlier than the keep, however I wouldn’t have recognized that if I hadn’t learn the emails intently. Once I make a resort reservation, I typically don’t even have a look at the e-mail affirmation, however it’s a must to bear in mind to do this with Vacasa.
No day by day housekeeping
That is true of virtually any trip rental, however you haven’t any day by day housekeeping while you guide a Vacasa trip rental. I get pleasure from returning to my resort room after an extended day to a clear / straightened room. I miss having another person to scrub the place up every day after I keep in a trip rental. This isn’t a knock of Vacasa however slightly a mark of how spoiled I’ve turn into by good accommodations.
Issues I really like about Vacasa trip leases via Wyndham Rewards factors
Glorious worth for factors
Since you possibly can guide properties costing as much as $500 per bed room per evening (when accounting for common nightly fee on your stick with all taxes & charges included), you may get wonderful to excellent worth for factors. It’s going to value you simply 15,000 Wyndham Rewards factors per bed room per evening for a Vacasa Trip rental — and 10% lower than that you probably have one of many Wyndham Earner bank cards. That’s a terrific deal.
With this most up-to-date rental, we have been in a position to snag a big 4-bedroom home that might have simply slept 10 or extra individuals for 54,000 factors per evening (15K factors – 10% cardholder low cost x 4), which was an honest deal in comparison with the money fee of about $846 per evening all-in. At over 1.56c per level it wasn’t probably the most spectacular Vacasa worth I’ve seen, nevertheless it was definitely higher than our Cheap Redemption Worth.
A few years in the past, I stayed in a “1 bed room” cabin within the Pigeon Forge / Nice Smoky Mountains space that had a loft with a pull-out couch that might sleep 2 and a loft above the loft with a futon mattress to sleep two extra.
Since there was just one precise “bed room” in that property, it value 15,000 factors per evening (or 13,500 factors per evening as a Wyndham Rewards Earner bank card holder) for all the place.
No taxes, cleansing charges, or different bills
I really like that Vacasa leases booked via Wyndham Rewards incur no taxes or charges of any sort. You don’t pay a cleansing charge and even provide a bank card quantity up entrance. The reserving course of simply includes utilizing your factors and it takes minutes on the telephone.
You may mix factors from two visitors
Greg has beforehand written in our information to reserving Vacasa leases that you would be able to mix factors from two individuals (I don’t know whether or not it’s potential so as to add factors from greater than two members). Every particular person should use factors in complete evening increments. In different phrases, we have been in a position to guide one evening from my account and two from my spouse’s, however we couldn’t have carried out 2.5 nights from her account and 0.5 nights from mine.
What impressed me probably the most was that the method for that was fairly seamless. The telephone agent knew what to do and the ensuing reservation got here underneath one single affirmation quantity for all three nights, so there was no concern about having to take a look at from the primary reservation and into the second, and many others.
For full particulars on the reserving course of, see: Wyndham Vacasa: Nice worth is actual.
You may switch factors from Capital One or Citi
Each Capital One miles and Citi ThankYou Rewards switch 1:1 to Wyndham Rewards. Transfers from each are instantaneous. Sadly, the latest 20% switch bonus from Citi expired final evening.
Distinctive properties potential (plenty of house, fascinating places, and many others)
For fewer or roughly as many factors as many chains cost for normal resort rooms, you may get actually distinctive total properties or far more room than you’ll with a resort.
Not all resort factors are created equally, however as a degree of comparability, an ordinary resort room at a 4 Factors by Sheraton was going for 44,000 Marriott Bonvoy factors throughout our dates. We paid 54,000 Wyndham Rewards factors for a 4-bedroom home. Whereas it wasn’t truly our highest-value redemption ever, it was nonetheless higher than paying for 3 rooms for 3 nights at a resort. With 7 whole individuals, we’d have wanted a naked minimal of two rooms at one other resort. This was a significantly better deal by comparability.
Here’s a full tour of the property:
And listed below are some photos of this most up-to-date Vacasa rental:
Trip leases are very talked-about, significantly for household vacationers, since they typically supply far more room than a resort room. The primary disadvantage for individuals who get pleasure from award journey is the truth that there typically aren’t affordable methods to guide trip leases with factors. Nonetheless, we now have written extensively concerning the Vacasa partnership with Wyndham Rewards, and I just lately took benefit of the prospect to guide a four-bedroom property with Wyndham Rewards factors. Whereas we encountered a number of the typical cleanliness shortcomings right here and there and had an issue with the keybox, we very a lot loved our keep general. Trip leases will most likely by no means be my most popular methodology of journey as a result of I get pleasure from extra predictability in terms of lodging, however I think about that once we want a trip rental we are going to proceed to hunt out possibilities to make use of our Wyndham Rewards factors to nice worth with Vacasa trip leases.