Expedia Group announced that it is implementing the next phase of its strategy to simplify its vacation rental brand portfolio and focus on Vrbo®. Next month, users of the HomeAway® website in the U.S. will be redirected to Vrbo.com and HomeAway mobile app users will receive a notification to download the Vrbo app. Travelers will not experience any changes to their vacation rental bookings or login details as Vrbo serves every use case that HomeAway previously did.
Since making Vrbo its primary alternative accommodations division in May 2019, Expedia Group launched the Vrbo brand in countries where the company did not yet have a vacation rental presence and rebranded existing country-specific sites to Vrbo. Vrbo is now live in 15 countries across the Americas, EMEA and APAC regions.
“Since it was founded 25 years ago, Vrbo has become a leader in the vacation rental industry and a household name in family travel,” said Peter Kern, Vice Chairman and CEO, Expedia Group. “Through the years, the Vrbo brand has consistently outperformed HomeAway with family travelers. Unifying our vacation rental brands under Vrbo allows us to focus our energies on providing the best travel experience for families everywhere.”
Simplifying Expedia Group’s portfolio of vacation rental brands means more resources can be dedicated to marketing, engineering and customer support for Vrbo, which is positioned to be the leading lodging choice for family travel. By consolidating Vrbo and its second largest brand - HomeAway US - into one, Expedia Group can be wholly dedicated to building more brand affinity for Vrbo and its devoted customer base of travelers and vacation home owners and property managers.
Jeff Hurst, President, Vrbo, added: “Family travel is incredibly complex – whether you’re planning a trip with kids, grandparents, extended family or close friends who are like family – it’s not easy to find a place that makes everybody happy. The incredible homes available on Vrbo are uniquely suited to serve all kinds of families because of the space, privacy and amenities they provide. Our singular focus on Vrbo means we can do more to give families amazing vacations and deliver quality bookings for our partners.”
Expedia Group will continue to introduce the Vrbo brand globally. Expedia Group’s portfolio of vacation rental brands includes HomeAway UK, Stayz™, Bookabach™, Abritel™ and Fewo-direkt™.
HomeAway acquired VRBO in 2006, and Expedia Group acquired HomeAway in 2015. Despite minimal investment in the brand, VRBO sustained strong brand recall and affinity among its biggest fans for years. In early 2019, VRBO rebranded to Vrbo and introduced a fresh, new logo and pronunciation. Later that year, Expedia Group made Vrbo its primary global alternative accommodations brand.