Forget the View: Tech is Most Important Vacation Rental Amenity

The ‘workcation’ trend is bringing vacation technology desires and frustrations into the spotlight, according to new research from tech care company Asurion. The online survey of 500 Digital Nomads – people who are blending work with leisure travel – showcases the need for vacation rentals with more reliable tech amenities as more people embrace the remote work lifestyle.

Nearly all Digital Nomads (97 percent) say they’ll continue to mix work and vacation this year, with 75 percent saying they’ll do so often. This explains why high-speed internet is their No. 1 must-have item in vacation rentals. Despite this, Wi-Fi issues are also their biggest frustration while on vacation. Challenges operating other tech devices in the rental, such as TVs or smart speakers, are the third biggest frustration, behind rental cleanliness.

“Americans who are taking advantage of remote work flexibility or working while vacationing told us that a rental property with weak or spotty Wi-Fi can ruin their vacation even more than a loud, week-long house party next door. That’s a powerful statement that reflects just how much we rely on tech, even while getting a change of scenery away from home,” said Mike Dolezal, Asurion Vice President of Home Technology Innovation.

“As the remote work and ‘workcation’ trend has grown, so has the need for reliable internet and functioning tech devices. Our Tech Experts and nearly 700 uBreakiFix by Asurion stores are prepared to help these workcationers – and all vacationers – with their tech this summer, regardless of whether it’s a cracked screen, a laptop that won’t turn on or help extending the Wi-Fi.”

Technology and entertainment options are the top features Digital Nomads seek out when selecting a vacation rental, requiring must-haves such as Wi-Fi (69 percent), access to streaming subscriptions (52 percent) and smart TVs (49 percent). Availability of amenities such as towels, linens and cookware ranked second, while the rental’s security features ranked third.

Over half (57 percent) of Digital Nomads say the Wi-Fi at their vacation rentals is often not strong enough to meet their work needs, which explains why nearly half (48 percent) bring a mobile hotspot and a third bring a Wi-Fi extender/router (38 percent) with them. A pain for guests and hosts alike, spotty Wi-Fi is the top reason Digital Nomads say they would call their rental host directly during their stay. In fact, Digital Nomads are more likely to complain to the host about unreliable Wi-Fi than about broken air conditioning, heat or appliances.

Nearly three-quarters (74 percent) of Digital Nomads and their families also bring a laptop with them while vacationing and over half (57 percent) bring a tablet. However, more tech in vacation rentals also means more frustrations when devices don’t work or connect properly.

The Asurion Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research among 500 Digital Nomads, defined as office professionals or someone with a “remote work capable” occupation, who has traveled for leisure in the past 12 months and who worked at least some of the time while traveling, between May 26 and June 4, using an email invitation and an online survey.