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NS07950 Feb 22nd, 2007 04:15 PM

Paris apt rental through VRBO
I'm going to Paris in May and for the first time, am considering an apartment rental instead of going to a hotel. I've got a place picked out through VRBO but am starting to get nervous about the arrangements (versus a traditional hotel where you have someone to call if you have a problem!). Before I finalize things, does anyone have suggestions on how to check things out to ensure the rental/owner are legitimate? Does VRBO help if there's a problem?
Many thanks...

kathrynj Feb 22nd, 2007 04:42 PM

I have rented a few houses from VRBO in the US, Italy and France and they have all worked out very well. If you do a keyword search on Fodors, you will find comments from others. I usually try and cross reference the place to see if it is posted anywhere else and I also e-mail or talk to the person many times before actually showing up. Since each property is individually owned, i don't think VRBO does anything to help out but a lot of people have rented via that route. I used a different agency to do an aprtment rental in Paris but, again, my VRBO experiences have all been very positive (and many VRBO renters also rent other VRBO houses). Hope this helps.....

mayaj Feb 22nd, 2007 04:46 PM

I'm not sure if VRBO is liable in anyway, you would have to check on their web-site for a disclaimer. However, we have traveled to Europe for the past 9 years almost every year and have always rented an apartment (some on VRBO but mostly on local French/UK sites). We are actually going to Paris in June and rented an apartment as well. It beats the price of a hotel by a lot, not to mention the extra space, amenities, location that you would not get at a hotel for the same price. We have never had a problem to report, but make sure you do your homework and ask all the questions before you book your apartment (ie. are utilites, final cleaning, linen included in the price, is there a local contact, etc) Most places will want a deposit when you book but it should never be more than 50% of the final price.

Good luck and have a wonderful time in Paris!

amwosu Feb 22nd, 2007 05:29 PM

vrbo is an advertising service to match property owners with propsectice vacation rentors...not a management service and not an owner of properties so I doubt that they can do anything to help you in the event of a problem.

I have rented two apartments in Paris and very extensively throughout the US (Florida, Colorado, Hawaii, California many times) over a number of years at a great savings and with absolutely no problems.

When you find a rental through vrbo you will be dealing directly with the owner or through the owners' management agency.

Look on the bottom of the vrbo page to see how log they've listed there. See if there are past rentor comments and email addresses for asking questions. Also see how long it takes for the owners to reply to your questions and tell them your apprehensions and ask what would happen if there was an emergency with the apartment to see what their response and plan would be.

NS07950 Feb 22nd, 2007 06:02 PM

Thank you for the good suggestions. The apartment has been on the site since 2003 so I'll take that as a good sign. I've also emailed one of the people who left comments (with their email address)...

amwosu Feb 23rd, 2007 04:34 AM

I would search this site to see if any fodorites have stayed at the apt. Use the search box and enter vrbo/31087 (or whatever the number is). Also start a thread titled "Have you stayed at vrbo/31087 in Paris?"

I like renting from someone who will take payment through my VISA for international rentals as I find it easier than having to wire euros. For US rentals I usually send a check.

It isn't unusual to be asked for 30-50% of the rental fee at the time of your reservation and for the remainder 30 days in advance of your stay. Some people who typically use hotels shy away from that set up.

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