Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions that we are asked. Can’t find the answer to your vacation rental question? Call us at 269-469-1412 and we are happy to assist you!

Contact Information

Please mail payments to:
Yellow Bird Vacations
PO Box 315, Union Pier, MI 49129

New Buffalo Office
19405 W US Highway 12   New Buffalo, MI 49117

Union Pier Office
16201 Red Arrow Hwy Union Pier, MI 49129

Office Hours
Summer: Monday - Sunday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM EST
Off season: Monday - Friday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM EST

Phone Numbers
Union Pier office (reservations, marketing, homeowner inquiries): 269-469-1412
New Buffalo office (bookkeeping, housekeeping, maintenance, human resources): 269-469-9048

911 for police, fire and medical emergencies and also for non-emergency police calls.
Yellow Bird 24 Hour Hotline: 269-426-5577

Q. How do I reserve a property?
Call us at 269-469-1412
Email at [email protected]
Reserve online at Reservations placed online after hours will be approved by our reservations department during the morning of the following business day. Reservations are not official until payment is received and a rental agreement is signed.

Q. What forms of payment do you accept?
Personal check by mail or by phone (eChecks over the phone incur a 2.75% fee)
Credit Cards (Visa, Mastercard, Discover) over the phone or on our secure online reservation system (credit card payments incur a 2.75% fee)

Q. Payment terms
A 50% down payment is due within seven days of placing a reservation and the second installment is due 30 days before your stay.

Q. What time is check-in and check-out?
Check-in - 4:00 PM Eastern
Check-out - 10:00 AM Eastern
Please note that our summer schedule is tightly arranged and we are unable to allow early check-in or late check-out. Please ask about flexibility if you are booking off-season weekends however as we always try to make your stay as long as possible.

Q. How do I go about checking into our property?
We will email you detailed check-in information 7 days before your arrival day.  We ask that all guests visit our closest office to pick up keys and other pertinent information for the home and area. It is very important that you contact us as early as possible to make different arrangements if you will be arriving after 5:00 PM Eastern time.

Q. Can I see the property before making the reservation?
We are happy to show a house to guests booking one week or longer. Please note that our houses are often in use during weekends and visits must generally be scheduled on a weekday. We need 24-hour notice to ensure that houses are available and weather is cooperative.

Q. What can we expect at the property?
All properties have unique amenities. The most efficient way to research potential properties is by viewing each property on our website. We are happy to provide additional details by email or phone. Expect a Yellow Bird property to have cable or satellite TV, wireless internet, central air and heating, and laundry facilities unless otherwise specified. All kitchens are ready for everyday mail preperation.

Q. What is supplied at the property for our stay?
Bed linens and bath towels
Two rolls of toilet paper per bathroom
One roll of paper towel
A small number of kitchen garbage bags
Dish soap
Hand Soap
Best practice is to inventory provisions upon arrival and purchase necessities from local grocery stores.  We do not provide condiments and spices for health and safety reasons

Q. What is your cancelation policy?
Our cancelation policy is simple: if you have made a down payment and need to cancel, we will attempt to re-book the house. If successful, we will retain a $300 re-booking fee and refund the remainder of the down payment minus credit card fees. Your deposit is forfeited if our attempts to re-book are unsuccessful.

Q. Can we have extra family or friends at the property?
The occupant limit for each property is listed online and delineated in the guest agreement. Please be considerate of the property, neighbors, and homeowner and do not exceed this number. Violation of occupancy will void the agreement and could result in expulsion. If staying in a neighborhood in which association rules apply, extra guests are not permitted to use the association beach, pool or facilities.

Q. Is smoking allowed at the property?
Smoking is not permitted inside any property. We do not tolerate littering cigarette butts in the yard or around the home. A violation of this will result in extra housekeeping fees being charged as outlined in the guest occupancy agreement. In rare instances, some properties may be deemed as smoke-free including the exterior premises as well.

Q. Are dogs allowed?
We do have many dog friendly houes. This is detailed on each property page. You can search our website for dog friendly vacation rentals or our reservationists are happy to help.  Even though we really love cats, they are never allowed for a variety of reasons.

Q. Is there public transportation to the area?
Amtrak provides service from Chicago via Michigan City, IN to downtown New Buffalo. Information and schedules can be found at

Q. Are there any cabs or buses which service the local area?
A Call Away Taxi is always very helpful.  Harbor Country Transportation can act as cab/bus service for your group and is great for winery tours as well. If departing from the Amtrak station in New Buffalo, the Four Winds bus will allow you to ride (for a nominal fee) to any New Buffalo hotels or Four Winds Casino. Please note that as of Spring 2019 there is no consistent Uber or Lyft option in our area so please plan accordingly.  We do have a few houses in downtown New Buffalo that would not require a car.

Q. Are there any hospitals / urgent care centers close by?
Lakeland Hospital - St. Joseph, MI
St. Anthony Hospital - Michigan City
Franciscan Express Care - Michigan City

Q. If I leave an item at the property how would the return be handled?
Returned items will incur a $25 fee including shipping. If the shipping cost is over $25, additional fees may apply.