Would you like to get away with your family this summer?
If you are looking for a less expensive way to travel with your family, inside or outside of the country, consider a house swap.
House swapping is the act of allowing another family to stay in your home, while you vacation in theirs.
This eliminates your need for hotel costs and can greatly reduce your dining costs.
House swapping can be arranged through an online house swapping agency. The cost of a swap is anywhere from $0-$500, but most are in the $100-$150 range. The fee is often for annual membership to a house swapping network.
Once you are a member of a house swapping agency you create a profile of your home with detailed pictures, list of amenities, and nearby attractions.
How Do You Know if House Swapping Is Right For You?
If you are considering house swapping, but aren’t sure if it is the right fit for you and your family, the below tips will assist you in making your decision.
Your Travel Dates Should Be Flexible
Let’s say you live in New York and want to spend two weeks in Los Angeles with your family this summer. While you may be able to easily find a family to swap with you, it is unlikely that they will be available to swap the exact dates you desire. To increase your chances of finding a swap, begin your search in advance and be as flexible as possible. For example, instead of trying to swap the first two weeks of July, try to swap any two weeks in July or any two weeks that include July 4th.
Calculate The Money You Will Save
Your hotel cost will be eliminated and your food cost can be greatly reduced since you will have a kitchen in your home. While dining in your vacation spot may be part of the experience you want to enjoy, particularly in foreign countries, you could have breakfast each day at your swap home and can stock up on beverages and snacks to take with you while on your daily excursions.
For example, an average double room in Venice, Italy costs $200 per night and your food costs are approximately $40 per person, per day, if you are dining in mid-level restaurants.
If you house swap, you can save hundreds or thousands of dollars per vacation depending on the size of your family and length of your stay.
Sometimes Cars Are Included Too
Depending on the swap arrangements you make, a car may be included in your swap to further reduce your spending.
You Don’t Have To Own Your Home To Swap
Many renters swap homes with other renters or homeowners. You need to check with your landlord to confirm that swapping is allowed and to see if you need to make any additional arrangements on your end.
Don’t forget these other items to consider when arranging a house swap: Staying in a home can give you more space and privacy than hotel rooms. You will feel more like a local staying in a home instead of a hotel. You will need to make key arrangements with a friend or family member for when you house swap guests arrive and depart. You will need to clean the home you are staying in before you leave so that it is in the condition it was in when you arrived.
There are many benefits to doing a house swap, including financial savings and the comfort and normalcy of staying in a home opposed to a hotel. House swapping may not be the right fit for every family, but for many families it opens up the door to more frequent travel and gives you the financial freedom to experience more culture while on vacation.