A recent article about a nationwide Airbnb scam sparked a spirited conversation among a group of colleagues, all seasoned travelers.1 While hotels are still the norm for business travel, it was surprising to learn how many professional colleagues had stayed at vacation rental properties while traveling for leisure.  As they shared both positive and negative experiences, the singular point that everyone noted was a large variance in security measures. In this article, we discuss various safety measures for staying in a vacation rental, including the FoneTrac travel safety app for business travelers or for leisure vacationers.
 
In a hotel, local codes usually require safety latches, sometimes even electronic key cards; and we expect front desk staff and security personnel to attend to our safety throughout our stay.  Vacation rentals, on the other hand, unless they are on resort properties, generally do not offer those same reassurances.  Some colleagues enjoyed the experience of staying at unique and “less sterile” properties, while others expressed discomfort, feeling less safe once they arrived and settled in.

A female colleague who frequently travels solo for vacations had some great suggestions for people who want to avoid that discomfort.  The following tips can be helpful when safety is on your list of concerns…

Vacation Rental Safety Tips

Vacation Rental Safety Tips and a Travel Safety App for Business Travelers

  • First, when considering a vacation rental, do your own research about the property and the neighborhood. This colleague often looks at Google Earth’s street view to check out the surrounding area and match the property address to the photos in the listing.
  • Next, she advised, before and during booking, don’t be afraid to ask questions about security. Simple questions about locks on exterior doors and windows let a host know you are a security-minded guest. While hosts may be asked to install safety equipment such as smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors by the rental companies or platforms, what constitutes adequate physical security measures can be far more subjective. She suggests asking if there have ever been any break-ins or burglaries…and staying alert if any responses seem evasive.
  • Once you arrive and check in, she suggests doing a walk-through to make sure all door and window locks are working. Contact the host or vacation rental site immediately if any problems are noted.  If you can’t get the issue resolved and you don’t feel safe, follow your instincts and stay somewhere else while you work out a refund or other resolution.

As this colleague explained, vacation rental properties can offer leisure travelers unique and personalized experiences…and with proper caution, less worry about safety during your stay.  Bon voyage!

FoneTrac Travel Safety App for Business Travelers

If you’re looking for a travel safety app for business travelers with instant access to a 24/7 team of security experts, look no further than FoneTrac. With FoneTrac, you can check-in or send panic alerts at the touch of a button…anywhere in the world. We have decades of experience in the security industry and partner with UnitedHealthcare Global to provide our clients with top-notch service. FoneTrac is the ideal business travel security app, travel security app and iPhone / Android companion for your business travel needs. Contact us today!

Sources: (1) https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/43k7z3/nationwide-fake-host-scam-on-airbnb