A recent study revealed that almost a fifth of UK respondents are choosing staycations over holidays abroad in 2023 as a direct result of the cost of living crisis. This will likely contribute towards a surge in bookings in holiday lets this year, but what kinds of holiday properties are we looking for?
As (hopefully) some warmer, brighter weather approaches, roof window and home improvement experts RW4Y (www.roofwindows4you.co.uk/) have looked into the most searched-for terms for holiday lets, cottages, and Airbnbs to determine what sort of amenities are important to staycation-seekers right now*.
1. Dog and pet-friendly (6,700 searches per month)
On average, 6,700 people a month search for dog friendly holiday cottages here in the UK, and a further 2,000 or so search for pet friendly Airbnbs. We’ve always been a nation of pet lovers, but millions of Brits adopted new pets or became owners for the first time during the pandemic. Three years later, there are more of us than ever wanting to bring our dogs, cats, and other pets along on our holidays with us, and this is reflected in the types of holiday properties we’re searching for.
Dog friendly holiday lets include all properties that allow dogs, however many hosts choose to take advantage of how popular these types of rentals are by including lots of dog-friendly features, such as doggy bedrooms and welcome packs for pooches.
2. Beach and lake access (6,400 searches per month)
Far and away the most popular location when looking for a holiday let is the Lake District in North West England, according to the terms with the highest search volume: airbnb lake district (6,400 searches per month) and holiday cottages in the lake district (3,300 searches per month). For this reason, holiday lets near lakes that make the most of their location are sure to be popular, either by providing panoramic views or by advertising that they have direct access to the water’s edge.
Outside of properties in the Lakes, the term holiday cottages with direct beach access gets the most search, with 1,500 people Googling this per month on average, and other sea, seaside, and seafront terms achieving similar results. It seems we Brits are simply drawn to water!
3. Hot tubs (3,500 searches per month)
Hot tubs are one of the most sought-after amenities when booking a holiday let, according to search data. At least 3,500 people per month search for holiday cottages with hot tubs. This could be because heated hot tubs and jacuzzies are both relaxing and fun — just what you need from a staycation — and they’re equally popular among families, couples, and large groups.
In 2020, Airbnb named hot tubs the fifth best amenity for hosts to offer, while swimming pools were number one (Airbnb). However, more recently, it seems hot tubs have overtaken pools to take the top spot so they’re a good amenity to consider if you’re a host looking to bring in more bookings.
4. Accessibility (600 searches per month)
600 people per month search for disabled holiday cottages, including holiday cottages with wet rooms. If you’re a wheelchair user, have mobility issues, or another disability, it can often be frustrating trying to find out whether the property you want to rent for your holiday can accommodate your needs. So, it’s essential for holiday let owners to clearly communicate the amenities available for guests with disabilities in their property, including step-free entrances, grab bars and hoists, and accessible parking.
5. Games rooms (200 searches per month)
A games room isn’t on everybody’s list when hunting for the perfect holiday let, but it is one of the fastest-rising amenities according to search data. There are around 200 searches per month for holiday cottages with a games room, and 500 searches per month for holiday cottages with both a games room and an indoor pool — double the fun! 90 people per month will settle for an Airbnb with pool table to let off some steam, so it could be well worth implementing a few gaming elements to a holiday let.
“We all deserve a holiday this year, and while bookings for trips abroad have picked up since the pandemic, staycations are still a popular option for many Brits due to the cost-of-living crisis among other reasons. Fortunately, there are many beautiful places to stay here in the UK, from the scenic Lake District and seaside towns to the bustling cities of England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland.
“If you’re a host looking to make the most of this boom and increase bookings for your property, make sure you clearly advertise the amenities you have available. Whether you offer a pet-friendly property, have a hot tub or games room, or have plenty of accessible features, your holiday let could be exactly what somebody is looking for — you just have to let them know!
“If your holiday let is in a scenic location, you can make the most of this by ensuring your photography includes shots of the local environment. If you have access to any of these views from the property itself — especially those sought-after views over water — be sure to take a photograph looking out the window as this can really get people excited about holidaying in your let.”
Sarah Hastings, Digital and Marketing Manager at RW4Y