Florida Guide > Accommodation
When should you book a villa?
We get many questions from potential guests wanting to know when is the best time to book a property in Orlando? The answer to this question is not as simple as you might think, but hopefully I will put your mind at rest, using not only my own experiences, but that of our many guests.
When we first started renting our property in 2004 there was a definite trend to booking a villa in Orlando well in advance (anything up to a year and a half). Supply for properties was very high and as such many people wanted to ensure they managed to get the best property they could for the best possible price. This mainly meant committing to renting a property a long way out. Many of the best properties being booked first.
As the ‘credit crunch’ took hold in 2008/2009 and with people unsure of their jobs and whether they could afford a special holiday/ vacation to Florida, the trend of bookings went from long range bookings to more shorter, last minute bookings. Villa owners did not see a great drop in rentals, demand still outstripped supply. What was interesting was the more US citizens were taking a vacation in Florida and as such many peak periods were booking up early. This being in contrast to the typical trend of booking last minute.
As we have currently seen 2011/2012 has seen a move back to the longer range bookings as many UK guests now feel ready to go back to Florida for their holidays. This supported by the trend of US bookings also still booking early, it is safe to say people should be looking at well over a year in advance for booking peak period dates (Easter, Summer, Thanksgiving, Xmas and New Year).
When booking early you are also going to get the best rate from the owner too. This is mainly because of the Yearly price increases. By booking early the price you pay will be held at the older rate and not the new one. This is mainly because you can lock in the price at the time of booking.
If you are flexible in your dates and can travel outside of the school holiday periods there certainly is some great deals to be had. Not only will flight prices be a lot cheaper, villas are also not as expensive to rent (Jan, Nov & early Dec). This is not to say owners don’t take bookings for these periods, because they often do, it is just the demand for these dates is often lower than during the school vacation periods.
One thing that you do need to be aware of in the quieter months is a lot of schools and sports clubs converge on Orlando to play sport. We have certainly seen a big increase over the years with clubs using the facilities near Disney and around the Orlando area. A lot of these organisations are now looking to rent villas as opposed to renting hotel rooms. Not only is it cheaper per head, but the extra space and facilities that are on offer far outweigh staying in a hotel.
In answer to the question, when is it best to book a vacation property in Orlando? Well in the current climate, as early as possible would be my advice. Not only does it give you peace of mind, it also allows you to plan well in advance and get the best possible villa and flight prices, not to mention getting your first choice property. By booking early will also give you something to look forward to when you are not feeling so good (and we all have these days! ! ! ), and this is one of the main reasons in my view you should always look to book your villa well in advance.
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