An online holiday home rentals website is on track to become Europe’s market leader after striking deals with industry giants Hoseasons and Thomson.
Direct Holiday Bookings lists holiday homes from well known agents and private owners all on one site, meaning users can easily access information about suitable rental accommodation from across the market.
The site launched in May 2008 listing 10,000 properties but has already attracted the attention of more than 40,000 owners of apartments, cottages and villas worldwide worth a combined £6 billion.
Traffic to the website has trebled each month since its launch and this week the site’s founders have struck deals with leading agents Hoseason and Thomson amongst other leading holiday companies to list a further 50,000 holiday homes.
Andrew Gibson, MD at directholidaybookings.co.uk, puts their success so far down to the fact that it offers free listing for private owners and an unmatched range of property types worldwide.
He said: “We are fast approaching our target to list more than 150,000 properties by the end of next year, which would secure our position as European market leaders.
“We’ve incorporated the latest Web 2.0 developments to the site enabling users to place their own reviews and recommendations as well as being able to liaise directly with owners to get the best deals.
“We’ve listened carefully to the feedback we received in the first few months of operation and believe we’ve created a unique and efficient format which best suits the current market.”
The company reported a 15 per cent increase in bookings last week as holidaymakers look to save cash on expensive hotels and rising flight costs over the festive period by opting to book rental properties direct with the owner.
Andrew continues: “I think a major factor contributing to the success we’ve experienced so far is the current economic situation. It has meant that consumers are savvier than ever when it comes to cutting costs on holidays and finding that rented accommodation represents good value.
“Our free listings service has also been very attractive for holiday home owners who feel they’ve got a raw deal with high listing costs on other holiday rental websites.”
As part of their future expansion plans, business partners Andrew Gibson and Chris Bradley are looking to target strategic partners in the US to increase their range of properties in this country. Demand for properties in the US is currently very high accounting for a large percentage of searches on the site.
Direct Holiday Bookings lists a range of properties including, B&Bs and private accommodation. Users can search for properties listed by private owners and commercial agents according to their preference.
Andrew Gibson came up with the idea for the site having encountered large listing fees and commission rates when advertising his own holiday home online.