If you want to get more bookings and make your vacation rental listings stand out from the rest, why not create 3D virtual tours for your guests to explore?

3D tours allow you to showcase your property in detail. Instead of relying on their imagination, guests can view every aspect of the inside and outside space. Moving from room to room, they can picture what it would be like to stay at the property. 

You can add virtual tours to your direct booking website or your listings on OTAs. For example, Vrbo allows you to add a virtual tour to your listing and even recommends verified providers. 

3D tours are a great tool for getting more engagement and converting visitors into guests. In this article, we’ll explain more about virtual tours and talk about five companies that can help you create them.

What are 3D tours?

3D tours are made up of a collection of 360° images of your property. In every 360° image, you can look left, right, up, and down, and can also zoom in and out, and viewers can navigate from one to the next, creating a virtual tour of the property.

Most 3D tours allow you to move through the property by clicking on arrows or in the direction you want to go. This gives the illusion of moving through space in three dimensions. If you’d like to see an example, check out these 3D virtual tours by SkyRun Keystone.

Why should you create virtual tours for your vacation rentals?

There are plenty of good reasons to create 3D virtual tours for your property.

  • Engage visitors who land on your website or listing. No matter how great your property photos are, people are likely to be more interested in a 3D tour than just still images. 3D virtual tours can keep guests engaged and encourage them to stay on your site for longer.
  • Get more bookings. Thanks to the immersive experience of 3D tours, guests don’t have to imagine what it would be like to stay in your property – they’ll know exactly what to expect. Having 3D tours helps your brand look more professional and trustworthy and guests more likely to book.
  • Increase customer satisfaction. Guests can see the exact layout and features of a property before they arrive so there’s less chance they will be surprised or disappointed, or that the property will not live up to their expectations. 
  • Convince mid-term guests. Over the past year, property managers have seen growing numbers of digital nomads and guests looking for longer stays to combine work and travel. These types of guests need to see the property in more detail to ensure it suits their specific needs before they book. 3D tours can help you attract mid-term guests and establish the trust required for them to commit to booking your rental for several weeks. 

3D virtual tours for vacation rentals: The 5 best companies to hire

1. Inside Maps

Inside Maps is a great affordable option for property managers on a smaller budget who want to make virtual tours for vacation rentals. This tool unlocks the power of iPhones to make high-quality 3D tours, floor plans, building data, and more.

It’s a simple solution to showcase and promote your vacation properties. They offer various services, such as:

  • Immersive HDR photos.
  • Professional-grade floor plans.
  • The ability to upload straight to vacation rental platforms. Inside Maps has a partnership with Vrbo which means you can distribute your 3D tours for maximum visibility. 
  • Compatibility with Google Street View. You can easily add your listings to Google Street View to increase visibility.

You can use Inside Maps with any iPhone, either on its own or combined with their Hero rotor to scan your property and capture high-quality 3D images. It’s also compatible with the Theta Z1 fast capture tool, and the more affordable Theta V.

Inside Maps is now beta testing an iPhone-only way to capture images of your home in 3D.

Price: The basic package is free, the marketing package is $29 a month, and enterprise prices are available on request.

Availability: Worldwide

2. Matterport

Matterport is a 3D image capturing app that works with iPhones, 3D cameras, and spherical 360° cameras. They also provide real estate photography services if you don’t want to take the images yourself.

According to a client case study with Vacasa, the property management company increased occupancy by 14% thanks to using Matterport and saw 300% greater engagement with 3D tours compared to 2D imagery.

Matterport can help property managers elevate their promotional materials and provide guests with a highly realistic representation of the property, inspiring confidence and increasing bookings.

The tool can help you create 3D walkthroughs, 4K print quality photos, and more. You can publish your content to Vrbo, embed it on your website, and easily share it to social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube.

You can also publish to Google Street View, meaning people can access a tour of your property straight from Google Search.

Pricing: The professional package costs €62 a month, and it works with iPhone, Android, and supported cameras. This package includes small team collaboration, capture services (in selected cities worldwide,) and more.

Availability: Worldwide

See an example of a Matterport 3D virtual tour:

3. Box Brownie

Professional photo editing, visual staging, floor plans, rendering, and creating virtual tours for vacation rentals are just some of the many services that Box Brownie offers.

They have a guaranteed 24-hour turnaround time on all services apart from virtual staging, which takes 48 hours. You are also entitled to unlimited changes included until you are totally happy with the result.

The images and content they produce for you are copyright free and you’ll be able to use them as you wish without extra charge.

All you have to do is upload your photos and their team of experts will edit and enhance them as required. You’ll be able to download your images after they’ve been through the company’s quality assurance process.

Photo editing services can help make your 3D virtual tours look as professional as possible with extras like virtual staging, image enhancement, and item removal.

You don’t have to commit to any monthly subscriptions, so Box Brownie could be a great choice for property managers with a smaller budget and portfolio.

Pricing: Starting from €14.00 for a 360° virtual tour containing up to 15 photos.

Availability: Worldwide

4. Cartoblue

CartoBlue is on a mission to become the world’s leading provider of property visualisations.

They produce 3D and digital products related to mapping and floor plans for vacation rentals and the real estate industry as a whole.

Using CartoBlue, short-term property managers can boost engagement on their websites, increase leads and boost conversions with digital floor plans, community maps, and virtual tours for vacation rentals.

3D tours from CartBlue feature high-resolution HDR photos, interactive floor plans, and can be viewed on any device. They are even compatible with Samsung Gear VR and Google Cardboard, meaning guests can step into virtual reality to view the property as if they were inside.

The maps, floor plans, and renderings give guests the ability to get a feel for the location and community beyond the property. Renderings are particularly useful if you want to generate interest in a property that is currently still under construction.

360° floor plans are one of CartoBlue’s most popular features. They recreate the layout of the property in 3D, and you can customise every detail including the colours, furnishings, and decor.

Pricing: Contact CartoBlue to get a quote for their services.

Availability: Worldwide

5. Planomatic

Planomatic provides property insights, 3D tours, photography, and floor plans for the real estate market in the United States.

They partner with leading companies to provide property condition reports, 3D real estate photography, and floor plans. With a 4.9 out of 5-star rating on Google, and a guaranteed turnaround time of 48 hours from order to delivery, they are a great choice for large property managers who need high-quality services across their portfolio.

According to Planomatic’s research, 90% of renters would be more interested in a home with a 3D tour than a home without. 

The company uses Zillow 3D, Matterport 3D camera systems, and the Ricoh Theta Z1 to allow their technicians to create visually stunning 3D property tours.

They also provide precise floor plans, laser-measured by real estate photographers, to help guests envision an accurate layout of the space. 

Their ROI calculator can show you how you could increase your profits by optimising your real estate photography process with Planomatic. 

Pricing: Contact Planomatic directly for pricing information.

Availability: United States

Learn new ways to elevate your listings with 3D virtual tours for vacation rentals

Virtual tours can elevate your vacation rental listings helping you get more interest and bookings for your properties.

Join the VRTECH community to keep up with the latest developments in the vacation rentals industry, and discover new tools and technology for property managers.