Japanese Rakuten Lifull Stay Inc., which is co-owned by Rakuten Inc. (51 percent) and Lifull Co. Ltd. (49 percent), officially launched its vacation rental marketplace VacationStay on Friday. 

The two companies joined forces to enter the short-term and vacation rental business in July last year but were waiting for a new law that would allow private rental services for short-term accommodations to come into effect (we reported on it here).

“Following the enactment of the Private Lodgings Business Act (New Minpaku Act), the site is now open and has begun accepting reservations,” Rakuten said in a news statement.

VacationStay connects hosts running vacation rental facilities and shared accommodation — registered by individuals or organizations — with travelers and other guests. Its listings include homes and single rooms and the site provides a wide range of property information; from price to room layout and facilities.

Guests need to register on the site to book and pay for their accommodation in advance. While listings are free, users will be charged a flat fee of three percent of the rental price when bookings are confirmed. Property owners will also be offered insurance on their properties.

Initially, the listings will be shared with Amsterdam-based vacation rental site Booking.com. In future, they will be replicated on Rakuten Travel, South Korean online-to-offline short-term accommodation booking platform Yanolja, Austin-based HomeAway, Taiwanese AsiaYo.com and Beijing-based Tujia.com, according to the statement.

Property owners and realtors can also list monthly rental properties on Rakuten Lifull Stay Inc.’s other site MonthlyHomes.

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