New St. John Villa Rental Site Launches

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Well folks, we hear it’s quite chilly up there which means many of you are like daydreaming about your next trip to paradise. Well today we’d like to tell you about a new vacation rental site that will not only save you money, but it will also keep money here on St. John, which is always a bonus. Here are the details…

Back in June, VRBO/HomeAway – arguably the most popular vacation rental websites – began charging a four to nine percent “guest service fee” per booking. This in many cases translates to just under $400, which is nuts in our opinion. The sites also started increasing rates charged to property owners. Again, not cool.

So our friends over at StJohn-BeachGuide.com decided to do something about it. After six months of planning and development, they’ve launched www.StJohn-VillaRentals.com. And you guessed it … they don’t charge “guest service fees” or commissions on leads or bookings. So you save money, and the property owner does too. It’s a win-win for everyone involved.

For those of you looking to book a vacation rental here on island, this site allows you to deal directly with the property owners. StJohn-VillaRentals.com is exclusively St. John vacation rentals, and, unlike the other mega rental sites, you’ll see the owner’s or manager’s name, telephone number and website, which means you can email them directly. What a nice change…

The website also has an interactive map of all of the properties in your search. Just click on the icon to view a thumbnail picture of the villa. One more click and you can view the listing. You can even filter your search using presets like kid-friendly villas, a/c, ocean views and locations across the island. They even have a neat little feature where you can compare multiple St John villas. Very cool.

Check out this quick YouTube video that gives nice overview of the site:

And for the villa owners reading this, this is a great way to rely less on VRBO/HomeAway/Flipkey/AirBnB. If you’re tired of the skyrocketing fees you pay to list your property, you’ll probably want to check out this site. You can communicate directly with guests, and you can do so on a level playing field. According to the website’s owners, there are no paid featured properties, no forced bookings and no guest service fees.

So the next time you’re looking for a place to rent on St. John, be sure to check out www.stjohn-villarentals.com. It will save you valuable time and money.

7 thoughts on “New St. John Villa Rental Site Launches”

  1. Thanks for sharing! I just started my STJ 2017 vacation planning … and you saved me some cash – because I usually use VRBO! UROCK!
    Thx Jenn!

  2. I recently used the St. John villa rental site to book our March visit to St. John and found it to be easy and direct. It’s great for people who know the island well, as my husband and I do. I agree that the extra fees added by VRBO and other booking sites are excessive.
    That being said:
    I also am a travel agent and book villas for clients who are not comfortable with booking on line and rely on our expertise and recommendations. We have done business with many of the on-island villa booking agencies and always with good results. Villa owners would lose a valuable source of rental clients if they don’t also use your local rental companies. And as a business whose only source of income is the commissions we receive for our bookings, we would not work with rentals that do not pay commission.

  3. The fee from VRBO is ONLY applied if an owner uses VRBO for rental payment transactions. Many villas and condos on St. John do not use VRBO for payments, and you can pay the owner or manager on your own directly, not through VRBO, so no fee. If you see the BOOK NOW button, you’re paying the fee, BUT if you find the owner or manager through their personal website, you won’t have to. If you see “Request to Book”, that means that you can communicate directly with the owner or manager and that you will NOT be paying the fee because that owner is only using VRBO for advertising. It’s very confusing, LOL. Just use VRBO as a tool.
    “Request to Book”=NO fees
    “Book Now”=Fees

    • HomeAway/VRBO is now forcing owners to “agree” to book through them when they renew. No choice. And they’ve managed to delete any contact info – even in messages. So, owners and guests can’t freely communicate – unless it’s through HomeAway/VRBO. BONUS – they recently raised their guest service fee to 5%>12% of the booking! And using AirBnB …expect to pay 6%>12% guest service fee!

    • This is no longer true. VRBO blocks the owner and renter from seeing phone numbers or emails until after accepting the booking from VRBO. Additionally they are reading all responses and if they catch an owner directing the renter away from VRBO, they will cancel the owners VRBO account. They also went in and removed contact information for past renters.

  4. I have always only used VRBO as a tool and booked direct with the property owner for the half a dozen or so times that I have booked accommodations this way. If the only way to book were to be through VRBO and pay the fees than I would explore other options.

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