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Category:  Vacations

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Deciding to Try Vacation Home Exchange

By Helen Bergstein

Many travelers first choose a home exchange because they want to save money or because they want to experience something unusual, but there are many reasons why you might want to swap your home with someone. Home swapping simply means that you make your home available to someone from another state or country while you stay travel in their home as an accommodation on your own trip. You can exchange homes for a few days or for months at a time. This style of traveling is quickly becoming one of the hottest options for people of all ages, thanks to the many advantages home swapping offers:

 * Adventure. If you want to experience a new destination as an    invited guest anywhere in the world, then home exchange is a    perfect option for you. Home exchange is about people and    cultures and it offers you a way to see the world from a local    perspective. You can mingle with the neighbors (if you want),    head to the local pub, or visit a farmers market to cook your    own delicious meals. With this travel accommodation, you have    the adventure of exploring a new home, staying away from usual    tourist areas, and the adventure of traveling further and    longer than you ever imagined.

 * Plenty of resources. When you choose to exchange homes, there    are wonderful online communities ready to help you find and    plan your next vacation exchange., for example,    comes highly recommended by members as a safe and friendly    place to learn about available homes and offers worldwide.    Tips on preparing your home, advice for finding the perfect    swap partner, and members' articles of recent swaps will have    you feeling like a home swap pro in no time.

 * Comfort. When you stay in someone's home, you enjoy the    pleasure of a real home, with all the amenities and personal    touches you've come to expect.  Imagine a fully equipped    kitchen when you're in the mood for scrambled eggs at 2am    or a full size washer and dryer when your toddler has just    covered himself in chocolate ice cream. There is simply no    need to stay in a drab or impersonal hotel room ever again.

 * Safety. Thanks to many of the secure online communities, you    can learn all about your host and their home before you    actually finalize any plans. Good communication is key to    all successful swaps. The home listing provides    plenty of opportunity to find out about the home and    neighborhood, home office amenities, and rules and regulations    such as no pets or smoking. Many emails and several phone    calls into planning your exchange vacation will ensure that    you'll feel like old friends by the time you arrive at your    home away from home. Once you arrive at your temporary home,    it's not unusual for hosts' friends and neighbors to drop by    or be available if you need them, offering help, suggestions    for sight-seeing, and some peace of mind.

 * Convenience. Today, finding homeowners to exchange with is    easier than ever.  Join a community, register as a member and    then browse the listings from all over the world to find a    home you would enjoy vacationing in. Posting your own home or    vacation home will bring in offers from around the globe that    could just lead to the best vacation you've ever had!

 * Flexibility. Whether you want to travel for a weekend, or    stay somewhere for months, chances are you can find suitable    accommodations to fit your lifestyle. Not all swaps must be    simultaneous, and very often 3 or more parties may be involved    to satisfy everyone's needs. If you can be a bit flexible with    dates and destinations the more opportunities (and fun) you'll    have. Experienced swappers say their best vacations came from    exchange offers in destinations they hadn't planned on    visiting before they started vacationing the home exchange    way.

 * Affordability. Without the cost of accommodations, and the    money saved on dining out at every meal, you'll save a    whopping amount of money to spend on more interesting things    such as cultural events, finer dining, maybe some adventure    trips on the side. Many homes are equipped with standard    sports equipment such as bicycles, tennis rackets,    canoes/kayaks, golf clubs, fishing equipment, snow shoes and    skis that you may very well have access to instead of renting.    Quite a few exchangers also swap their cars, which can offer    you even more savings.

 * Great travel options. Few accommodations offer the options and    possibility of adventure that home swapping does. Whether you    want a cottage in Washington State, a loft in Paris, or a home    in the Australian Outback, you can find it through home    exchanges. Whether your preferences are modest or glamorous,    home swapping lets you travel as you please.

With all these great advantages, it's time to starting thinking travel - the home exchange way!

Helen Bergstein is the founder of the  Digsville Home Exchange Club and an internationally-recognized expert on home exchange. Helen has written countless articles, newsletters, and surveys about home swapping and has won awards for her online home exchange service. Even though she keeps busy acting as chief, editor, customer service leader, and domain expert for, Helen still finds time to exchange her own home and do what fueled her passion for home exchange - travel. 


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Category:  Vacations

Related Links:  | Vacations | | Family Fun |

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