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Long Stay Vacations Gain Popularity During the Pandemic


November 4, 2020
Categories: Travel Tips

Has the coronavirus pandemic has turned your family into digital nomads? Work from home and remote learning means your family isn’t locked into one location for the duration of the pandemic. So why not change your view?

Long stay vacations have gained popularity during the coronavirus pandemic and some families are opting to move the work desk to new locations: out of the city and steps away from a tropical coastline or mountain hiking trail.

What Is A Long Stay Vacation?

Long stay vacations, also called extended stay vacations, range anywhere from 18 days to several months, but usually average 28 days.

This type of getaway has always been popular with travelers who want to immerse themselves in local culture, but coronavirus pandemic protocols have increased the allure. If you need to quarantine after arrival, a weekend trip is no longer a possibility and a long-stay vacation gives you time to comply.

Long stay vacations are different than long-term travel, which is buying a one-way ticket to a destination and staying for anywhere from three months to a year. Younger travelers are more likely to select this type of travel as it gives them the freedom and the time to chase good weather, attend memorable events and explore new cultures across several countries.

Offers and Extended Visas

Homeowners renting second homes saw the trend first, with usually hard-to-rent remote properties going quickly in early June. The demand continued past Labor Day, as brokers in New York ran out of rentals when the pandemic upended summer vacation plans.

The Real Deal New York Real Estate News reported the average duration of stay increased 20% between May and September in the Hamptons.

Hotels and resorts came on board soon after, offering work-from-home packages, like Viva Las Office promotions at two MGM Resorts, the Bellagio and Aria, located on the Las Vegas strip.

Hyatt offers a Work and Learn from Paradise package on four Caribbean properties. Marriott has a Work Stay and Play package to entice families to take an extended stay at a lower rate at the Element-Basalt resort in Aspen, Colorado.

In turn, countries are offering extended visas. France offers a long stay visa for those wanting to stay for three months to a year. If you want to stay in Germany for more than 90 days, you need to apply for a residence visa.

Every country has different requirements and sometimes even a different name for the visa — working holiday visa in Australia and temporary resident visa in Mexico — so be sure to do your research. VisaHQ.com provides a round up for a number of countries. Before selecting your destination, cross-check entry restrictions, border closings and flight bans to be sure you can secure one of these visas either in advance or on arrival.

Long Stay Benefits

A day in the office, then a few steps away to enjoy an evening on the golf course. Or, instead of eating lunch inside at a desk, enjoy it on a deck overlooking the ocean.

Not sold on a long stay vacation yet? Here are a few more advantages:

  • Hotels add a bit of luxury with daily linens, turn down service and room service, but an extended stay at a hotel can get expensive. Extended stay discounts can offer the same sense of luxury for about 3 to 5% less.
  • A weekend stay affords enough time to see the area’s highlights: a museum, a restaurant or two, perhaps a few landmarks. A long-stay vacation provides the chance to really get to know the area. You’ll meet the locals, become part of the community and see more than just the tourist spots.
  • If you’re a family with a couple of kids, perhaps a few friends and maybe a grandparent or two, a hotel suite may not have enough space for everyone. You can rent a house during a long stay vacation to provide more space, including furnished rooms, a full kitchen and appliances.
  • Families in particular will enjoy the additional space and flexibility of a long stay rental. Fully equipped kitchens mean you can cook meals instead of dining out, and furnished rooms provide options for work/study areas.
  • Like many hotels, utilities are included and maintenance issues are not your concern.

Where to Look?

Start with online options, but don’t hesitate to contact someone with boots-on-the-ground in your desired destination, like a local realtor who might offer long term rentals in the area.

  • Vacation Rentals By Owner (Vrbo) began in 1995 by pairing homeowners with families looking for places to stay. You can choose between houses, condos, cabins and cottages, select by location and find the experience you are looking for: nature, beach, romantic or retreats, to name a few.
  • Vacasa is an international vacation rental management company based in Portland, Oregon. It provides property management services for more than 25,000 vacation rentals in 31 U.S. states and 17 countries.
  • Airbnb is a global travel community with locations available in 191-plus countries. Through the Frontline Stays program, the company offered essential health care workers places to stay throughout the pandemic, meaning they have solid COVID-19 protocols in place.
  • Trip Advisor offers vacation rentals — cabins, condos and beach houses — in more than 200 countries.

Advice from Global Rescue

Treat a long stay vacation as you would any other vacation: do your pre-travel research, call your doctor for a travel health consultation, make copies of all your important paperwork, check travel advisories and coronavirus quarantine protocols. Global Rescue also recommends:

  • Keeping your eye on coronavirus hotspot areas. You’ve already done your research and selected a location with few COVID-19 cases. But if you’re planning on staying for a while, sign up for coronavirus alerts on your phone or do a daily check to see what’s happening in your area with Global Rescue’s free Coronavirus Update, delivered directly to your inbox on weekdays.
  • Signing up for a travel services membership. When you book your long-term rental, sign up with Global Rescue at the same time. If a medical emergency happens when you are 100 miles away from home, you’ll have access to medical advisory services as well as evacuation services.
  • Checking the area for nearby health care resources. Larger hotels may have a doctor on call, but you may not have immediate access to health care services at a long-stay rental. With a Global Rescue’s TotalCare membership, you get immediate access to a team of medical experts for real-time video consultations and treatment – plus all the services of a travel membership

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