Vacation rental is the renting out of a furnished apartment or house on a temporary basis to tourists as an alternative to a hotel. The term vacation rental is mainly used in the US. In Europe the term villa rental or villa holiday is preferred for rentals of detached houses in warm climates. Other terms used are self-catering rentals, holiday homes, holiday lets (in the United Kingdom), cottage holidays (for rentals of smaller accommodation in rural locations) and gites (in rural locations in France). Vacation rentals have long been a popular travel option in Europe (especially in the UK) as well as in Canada and are becoming increasingly popular across the world. Vacation rentals usually occur in privately owned vacation properties (holiday homes), so the variety of accommodation is broad and inconsistent. The property is a fully furnished property, such as a holiday villa, apartment, cottage, condominium, townhome or single-family-style home.
Contributions by Versageek, Ckatz, and JLaTondre.