‘Girls Trip’ popularity creates unique opportunity for vacation rentals during Essence Festival

NEW ORLEANS – June 26, 2018 – The popularity of the movie “Girls Trip” has made Essence Festival this year’s hot ticket for travelers coming to New Orleans. HomeAway®, the site for renting vacation homes, cabins and condos, reports that vacation rental demand for Essence Festival has increased significantly since 2017, when “Girls Trip,” a comedy starring Tiffany Haddish, Regina Hall, Queen Latifah and Jada Pinkett Smith, hit theaters.

The film, set in New Orleans with Essence Festival as its backdrop, was “essentially a commercial”for the four-day festival, which holds events at the Superdome and Convention Center, according to an event organizer. A quick search on HomeAway.com suggests that the “commercial” did its job.

While several one-bedroom condos are still available on the HomeAway app for the festival dates of July 5 through 8, a search for homes big enough to accommodate a “Girls Trip”-inspired gathering of four or more, yields only a handful of results. Not surprising, says Gary Zoller, a HomeAway vacation rental owner in New Orleans, whose house started drawing interest from 2018 festival-goers as soon as the hit movie landed on the big screen.

“Essence Festival has been a game-changer for our homes this summer,” says Zoller. “We have experienced a huge boost in bookings from festival attendees—and for as much money as I charge per night for Mardi Gras. Our homes are not located in the downtown area where the festival takes place, but it goes to show how homes like ours are perfect for groups traveling to New Orleans.”

Events such as Essence Festival draw thousands of visitors to New Orleans each year. In 2017 alone, vacation rentals like Zoller’s contributed to a total economic impact of $263 million to the city. New Orleans residents interested in renting their homes can find helpful information and a projected annual rental income potential at www.homeaway.com/earn

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HomeAway, based in Austin, Texas, is a leading online marketplace for the vacation rental industry, with sites representing more than 2 million unique places to stay in 190 countries, and is a part of the Expedia Group family of brands. For more information about HomeAway, please visit www.homeaway.com.

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