Home Exchange for Vacations
is a home exchange?
A home exchange for a vacation allows you
to enjoy all the benefits of a house accommodation at no cost.
Home exchange for vacations offer more amenities than hotels, such as
multi bedrooms, fully equipped kitchens, fireplaces, and private hot
tubs and pools. House swaps give you tons of space. This is
especially appealing for families. With a vacation home exchange, you
have room to breathe instead of being cramped up in a hotel room. Home
swaps offer more space and allow the entire family to stay under the
same roof. This kind of accommodation is well-suited for both short term
and extended stays. Home swaps offer more privacy. Free from the
environment that comes with noisy hotels, privacy is one of the biggest
benefits of any house swap.
Home Exchange types
Simultaneous Home Exchange. You stay in their home while they
stay in yours.
Non-Simultaneous Exchange. You stay in their home on one date,
later they stay in your home. Typically this is arranged by two members
with second homes or members who will be away and their home is open.
If you have a second home, the flexibility can really help with
arranging an exchange.
Hospitality Exchange. Guests come and stay with you as a guest in
your home. Later, you visit them as a guest in their home.
Why a home exchange? Home
exchange is the smart way to vacation. By trading homes for
vacations, families, seniors and singles can enjoy free accommodation
wherever they travel. Swapping
homes for holidays is a practical and sensible vacation alternative. Not
only do you save by not paying for lodging (hotel rooms,
surcharges, resort fees and taxes), you can also save by not paying for
restaurant meals, parking, laundry, internet connection, and much more.
How is an exchange arranged?
Swaps usually start with an offer emailed to a prospective exchange
partner who has been selected from a number of listings resulting from a
search. If the member feels an exchange might be possible, they reply to
the email and work out the details. There is no timetable for how
long this will take or what must be done.
Trying to find the
"perfect exchange match" may reduce your chance of a home
swap. Being flexible on locations, dates and accommodation will
increase your chances of a good, successful trade which is all most
When considering home exchange
opportunities, most people aren't necessarily seeking a home similar
to their own but rather they consider the location. Is it
somewhere they would like to visit? Are there places of interest
easily accessible from the home? After location, members will
check the number of people the home will sleep to decide if it will be
suitable and, if they have any special needs, whether these are
available in the home.
Each home exchange is unique; a bond
of trust must be built as you get to know your home swap partners and
their family through e-mails, letters or phone calls. Most people
traveling on an exchange love the idea of no cost accommodation
especially because through their communications ahead of time, they find
themselves not staying at a strangers home, but at new found friends,
and they will be staying in your home.
How do I get started? In
life there are spectators and participants. We want to encourage
you to not be a spectator by sitting back and waiting for others to
answer your listing. Participate in the fun by sending out heaps of
When would you like to travel on
an exchange? Some home exchangers like to plan years ahead,
while others are open to swapping homes within a few days. Most
people who are open to swapping homes for vacations, start looking for
exchange partners 4 to 12 months ahead of leaving on their trip.
Where would you like to travel to
on an exchange? Many home exchange members are available to
travel to almost any destination, while others are more specific.
Perhaps it's to some popular worldwide city destination such as New
York, San Francisco, London, Paris, Rome, Sydney and Vancouver. How
about a beach home in Hawaii, the Caribbean, Gold Coast, Western
Australia, Spain, Florida or Southern California. Maybe a
the countryside location in France, Denmark, Thailand, Canada or
Argentina appeals to you or maybe it's a ski resort in the Swiss Alps,
Tahoe, Colorado, Alberta or BC Canada that whets your appetite for
travel. Or you may be open to multiple home exchange destinations.
What ever your destination may be, city, country side or off the beaten
path area, there are people open to exchanging homes. Start by
exploring the home
exchange listings. Then have fun planning and writing your
your own home - A
listing is an advertisement. You are telling others that you are
interested in receiving home exchange offers. You interest others
and attract responses by what you say in your listing. We
recommend that you include photos with your listing. Then describe
some of the tourist and community interests in your area followed by a
little about your home and family. If you have pets,
be sure to mention this as well. You can share more information
directly with those who respond.
contact other members. Besides listing your home, send out
heaps of contact emails to others wanting home exchanges. You are
inquiring about the other members' interest in an exchange with you.
Be positive and tell then a bit about your home, your family and
community. You don't need to say too much but definitely don't be
negative or say too little. We exchange homes as well. Here's a
helpful suggestion that we have successfully used.
After you decide on an area that you might like to travel, contact every
member that has listed their home regardless of their desired
destinations. Why? It is true that some members have
definite dates and destinations set that can not be easily changed.
However it is also true that several members have listed desired
destinations, but would also consider offers from other locations.
They just didn't say that in their listing. By emailing all
members in a chosen area you can open up exchange opportunities that
Do I need to accept an offer for a
home exchange? As a member you are free to choose which
inquiry you wish to pursue further. Many of our members
receive many offers for exchange. One member from London indicated
that each year she receives well over 100 inquiries to arrange an
exchange. Sometimes it takes a few emails requesting further
information before one can make a decision. Please be courteous
and answer all inquiries. Some people wait for a response to
their home exchange offer before looking elsewhere and it gives them
opportunity to still find another exchange partner if you are not
interested. Some of these initial contacts may very well be future
home exchanges for you. Trying to find the "perfect
exchange match" may reduce your chance of arranging a home
exchange. Being flexible on locations, dates and accommodation
will increase your chances of a good, successful trade which is all most
When answering others offers for
Answer others listings Be
active. Send out heaps of emails. The
first letter you send to potential exchangers should express your
tentative interest, pending further correspondence.
Introduce your family, the ages of
your children, careers, hobbies and special interests. Especially
when teens and kids are involved, including a family photo is a good
Outline the advantages of your
home – i.e., its proximity to tourist attractions, shopping, safe and
quiet neighborhood, climate.
Provide a description of the
interior and exterior of your home
If offering a car, give the make,
year and condition. An automatic shift makes driving easier for
one unaccustomed to driving on the other side of the road.
Provide references if you are an
List your preferred dates and
length of exchange. The more flexible you are, the better your chances.
Avoid misunderstandings by having
a written agreement about exchange dates, the number of people involved,
use of the car, and who pays what in terms of utility and long-distance
listings, search features and registration are displayed on our Global
Pacific Vacation Homes home exchange site.
To join Global Home Exchange