A movement within the vacation rental industry to educate guests about the many advantages of booking directly with the owner or property manager, instead of on third-party sites, in order to save money, find the best price and have direct communication with owners. Read more


A short-term vacation rental marketplace that allows hosts to rent out their properties while travelers get to choose from affordable rentals around the world. Read more

Accessible tourism

Accessible tourism is defined as all-inclusive tourism and travel. This means that people with or without disabilities have equal access and enjoyment of touristic activities and travel in general. Read more


A complete online travel agency that provides luxury and budget options for vacation rentals, hotels, flights and airport transportation. This metasearch engine helps guests find the best rates for their holidays. Read more


Agri-ecotourism or agro-ecotourism is a mix of both ecotourism and agritourism. It’s a form of tourism that involves visitors participating in sustainable farming and learning about local produce. Read more


An online marketplace for vacation rentals and experiences around the world. On this well-known channel, you can list or rent a variety of unique properties such as treehouses or castles. Read more

Airbnb Plus

A program that recognizes listings and hosts for their outstanding service, design, and maintenance. These verified properties receive benefits such as higher visibility to potential guests, an improved reputation and services like professional photography. Read more

Airbnb Superhost

An experienced host who meets criteria such as a 4.8+ overall rating, 10+ stays, Read more

Alternative accommodation

The term commonly used to refer to any non-hotel accommodation offerings. Read more

American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI)

ASHI, the American Society of Home Inspectors, sets and enforces high standards of practice and a code of ethics for its members to promote excellence and professionalism in the industry. Read more


Also known as “serviced apartments”. They’re apartments that combine the conveniences and services of a hotel room with the independence of a short-term rental.


A housing unit that is found in a shared building. Typically there are several units on each floor, but there are also cases in which each floor is occupied by a single apartment. Read more


An online holiday-home marketplace with over 300,000 vacation rentals worldwide. The company is part of the TUI group. Read more


A term used to define someone who travels with a backpack. Backpackers are often independent travelers who look for low-cost and long-term experiences.

Bartered services

The act of exchanging a stay at a vacation property for goods or services, such as repairs and maintenance.

Beach house

A holiday home that is near or on the beach. Beach houses are typically constructed with materials that are resistant to the sun, salty air and sea.

Blackout dates

Blackout dates are specific dates in which vacation rental home owners don't accept any reservations, as they want to use the property themselves or allow friends or family to stay at the property free of charge. Read more


Also known as “reservation”. It refers to blocking a specific vacation rental property for a definite duration of time for a particular guest.

Booking request

The reservation method which requires approval from the host before a guest can book a property. In general, guests will message hosts in order to ask for availability and confirm the booking before sending any payment. Read more


Listing websites where owners can distribute their properties and manage them via a channel management software. Read more


A building (or group of buildings) with multiple units for rent, usually managed by a homeowners’ association (HOA) or a vacation rental manager.

Condo hotel

A building with condos but which offers services like a hotel (concierge, room service, etc.).

Depth of inventory

The number of similar units that are available to rent in a specific area.

Distribution channel

Third-party websites for advertising properties online, such as Airbnb,, Expedia, Vrbo, etc. Read more

Double bookings

A double booking, also known as overbooking, refers to when two or more parties book a vacation rental for the same nights. While it is a common occurrence, double bookings are extremely harmful to the reputation of a vacation rental owner. Read more


Ecotourism is responsible and sustainable travel to natural areas with the intention of conserving the environment and learning about the local culture. Read more

Fair Housing Act

The 1968 Fair Housing Act is a federal act in the United States intended to protect the buyer or renter of a dwelling from seller or landlord discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin. Read more


A fixer-upper refers to a property that is in need of repairs, updates, or renovations. These properties are often sold at a lower price point compared to similar properties in the same area that are in good condition. Read more


Dates in which a property has no reservations.

Holiday lets

The term for vacation rental homes in the United Kingdom or other countries that use British English.

Home sitting

Home sitting means having non-paying guests (or guests who will pay under-market value) stay in the vacation rental to look after the property and make sure everything is in working order. Read more

Homeowners’ Association (HOA)

HOA stands for homeowner association, which is a group of homeowners within a certain community or neighborhood that makes and enforces rules and regulations for their community. Read more


A business term used to refer to the portfolio of properties a property manager has to offer guests.

Listing site

Also known as “online travel agency (OTA)”. They’re third-party agents that list accommodations and advertise them through their own network. Airbnb, and Vrbo are examples of vacation rental listing sites. Read more


Lodgify is a vacation rental software solution that allows owners and property managers to easily manage their short-term rental business from one place. Owners can create their own bookable website, manage all their reservations on a centralized platform and sync their bookings and calendars with external channels. Read more

Low season

Also known as “off-peak season”. It’s a time of year during which travel is less common, resulting in fewer bookings for vacation rental owners and property managers and consequently forcing them to lower their rates in order to stay competitive. Read more

Luxury property

A higher-quality property – often a serviced rental – with superior architecture, services and amenities that are usually reflected in the rental price.

Multi-family building

A building or complex that is intended for multiple long-term tenants, but can also incorporate short-term units.


A set of indistinguishable properties. The decision of which specific property the guest will stay in is up to the property owner. A good example of a multi-unit property is a set of identical hotel rooms.


The case where some guests with a reservation do not show up to use the property they have reserved, without explicit cancellation.

Off-peak season

The time of year when fewer people travel to a destination and prices are usually at their lowest. Also called the low season. Read more

Online Travel Agency (OTA)

An Online Travel Agency is a web-based marketplace designed to help travelers research and plan their vacations. The top OTAs for vacation rentals include Airbnb, Vrbo, and Expedia, among others. Read more


The business practice of hiring an outside party to undertake services that were traditionally carried out in-house by the company’s own employees. Examples of this would be check-in, cleaning and turnover services, or even property management.


More bookings than the available rooms or properties.

Peak season

The time of year when more people travel to a destination and prices are usually at their highest. Also called the high season. Read more


A property that allows pets to stay and is suitable for them. Read more

Pre-construction homes

Properties that are sold before their construction at a discounted price.

Preparation Time Before Arrival (PTBA)

In the vacation rental and hospitality industry, Preparation Time Before Arrival (PTBA) refers to the necessary time required to prepare a property or accommodation for the arrival of the next guest. Typically, this process involves tasks such as cleaning, laundry, restocking supplies, and performing necessary repairs or maintenance work. Read more


A vacation rental or short-term rental home.

Property description

Content on your website or listings which tells your property’s story, gives your home a voice, and convinces readers to book your rental. Read more

Property group

A group of vacation rental properties that have very similar qualities and amenities. Often, rental managers will price these properties together.

Quiet hours

Specified hours during which guests are expected to keep noise to a minimum at a vacation rental or short-term rental property.

Real estate

Property consisting of land or buildings.

Referred booking

A reservation that was made due to a recommendation from another guest. Read more

Repeat guests

Loyal guests who return to a property after having stayed there previously. Read more


Also known as “booking”. It refers to the lease of a property for a given period of time.

Reservation confirmation

Message sent from the vacation rental owner or property manager to guests to verify that the booking was made successfully.

Room type

Different categories of rooms are available at a property or properties. Images and descriptions of main features and amenities applying to each room category will usually be included on the property website and across its distribution channels. Prices tend to vary for different room types. Read more


A fraudulent scheme to gain money. As the industry grows, scams are becoming more and more popular. Warning signs to look out for are: a lack of basic language skills, strange email addresses, unwillingness to pay via your preferred method, last-minute or same-day bookings, and uncertainty or too much flexibility on travel dates. Read more

Self-catering accommodation

Self-catering accommodation is a type of vacation rental that provides guests with the necessary kitchen and cooking facilities to prepare their meals. This accommodation type can take many forms, such as a vacation rental home, apartment, villa, cottage, cabin, or even a houseboat. Read more

Serviced apartment

A serviced apartment is a type of accommodation that combines a hotel's amenities with the space and privacy of a traditional apartment. They are typically furnished and equipped with a kitchen and other home-like amenities, such as a living room and bedroom. Read more

Sharing economy

The term used to describe the industry that uses non-traditional peer-to-peer business models.

Short-term rentals

Properties and accommodations that are rented to guests for a short period of time.

Shoulder season

Shoulder season is the months between the peak season, usually during the summer months, and the offseason in the winter. Read more

Single Family House (SFH)

An accommodation for one family.

Slow tourism

Slow tourism emphasizes the travelers' connection to their destination through culture, people, experiences, and intentionality. Read more

Sustainable tourism

Tourism that takes full account of its current and future economic, social and environmental impacts, addressing the needs of visitors, the industry, the environment, and host communities. Read more

Themed vacation rental

A property which takes on certain motifs either in the entire property or some rooms. For example, depending on the target guests this may be location-based themes like mountain or beach or popular tv shows and Disney movies. Themed properties are rising in popularity and can make a vacation rental stand out from the competition by providing a magical experience. Read more

Third-party distribution

Websites and companies that show information for a vacation rental. Examples of this include and’s partner sites, such as Vrbo and HomeAway.

Tourist board

A tourist board is an official organization that encourages travelers to visit their city, country, or region. They provide information about the area, including transportation, popular attractions, and where to stay. Read more


An industry term to refer to potential guests.

Vacation Rental

A vacation rental refers to private accommodation rented by tourists for a short-term stay. It is often the preferred alternative to a hotel or hostel for many travelers and usually consists of a furnished apartment, house, cottage, cabin or lodge. Read more

Vacation rental management

The term vacation rental management refers to the process of renting out properties for short-term vacation stays. This encompasses a variety of activities such as bookings, guest communication, cleaning, maintenance, and marketing to potential clients. Read more

Vacation rental software

A cloud-based program that allows you to build a website, accept direct bookings with online payments, connect to key third-party distribution sites and manage all your reservations and guest communications from one place. Read more

Villa holiday

Preferred term in Europe, villa rental or villa holiday refers to detached houses in warm climates.


The VRMA, or the Vacation Rental Management Association, is an association that caters to vacation rental management companies and professionals in the industry. They aim to promote and advance the vacation rental management industry through education, advocacy, and professional development. Read more

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