Home Exchange…From Fourteen Different Points of View

My husband and I are currently preparing for a home exchange to Cocoa Beach, Florida. Although this is our sixteenth exchange, it is the first one where we have used HomeExchange.com’s new ‘passport program’ (i.e. we will be staying in Cocoa Beach–but in return, our hosts will stay in someone else’s home at a location of their choice). I will detail this program further once our trip has been completed.

In the meantime, I am happy to repost a recent article from HomeExchange.com that highlights fourteen different bloggers who also travel using their service. If you follow my writing, you already know that I am a big fan of using home exchange for travel. (And if you missed my previous home exchange posts you can catch them here and here).

You don’t have to take just my word for it. Now, you can read a quick summary of thirteen additional points of view regarding home exchange, all in one convenient spot. Again, if you have any questions about how this swapping system works, I’d be happy to answer what I can. This is a non-sponsored post which gives me the freedom to respond to your questions openly and honestly.


14 Amazing Bloggers Who Travel With Home Exchange by HomeExchange.com

29 Replies to “Home Exchange…From Fourteen Different Points of View”

  1. I think the home exchange is a great way to live in different places. Curious about the passport program and how it works. Maybe a bit like “time share”, where access to different homes is accessible… Not something we would ever be able to do, what with not having a home. -)

    1. Hi, Liesbet – Thanks for commenting. From reading your blog, I believe that Home Exchange is very similar to House/Pet Sitting. In the former, one home is exchanged for another home, in the latter, a home is exchanged for services. On our upcoming home exchange, we took advantage of both the “last minute exchange program” and the “passport program.” In the passport program, you earn a ‘balloon’ by committing to have fellow home exchangers stay in your home…without staying in theirs. You then earn a ‘balloon’ which you can redeem to visit another member’s home at a mutually convenient time. I will write about this more in an upcoming post (she says with confidence!).

      1. Yes, it sounds relatively similar. I’ll have to read that next post of yours (Now you have to! Peer pressure!) to understand the balloon concept a bit better. Because, if you don’t swap with someone immediately, all the timing would have to work out for all the parties involved, which are more than two.

        1. Hi, Liesbet – Thanks for the peer pressure (works for me every time)! Home Exchange Balloons do not expire. You can save them up and use them whenever you like. Most other exchangers are always looking for balloons so they are simply ‘money in the bank’.

  2. I love the concept of home exchanges and have become more interested after talking to you and reading about your experiences. It seems like such a sane way to share resources and save money. And, with the interwebs, matching homeowners is so much easier. I don’t know much about Cocoa Beach, but it sounds warm, which I imagine is just what you are looking for right now!

    1. Hi, Janis – As you know, I am a huge fan of Home Exchange. This system has worked out well for Richard and I during the past ten years. Although exchanging homes is not for everyone, I sincerely believe that you and your husband would love it. Your hunch is correct, Cocoa Beach was a last minute exchange for us to escape the February blues (or in the case of our island recently, “whites”). While we are away, the temperatures at home are predicted to range from 39 – 41 degrees F. with 60% chance of rain/snow on most days. In contrast, the weather in Cocoa Beach during that same period is predicted to range from 75 – 84 degrees F. with 0% chance of rain on most days that we are there.

  3. Once my hubby and I really retire, we want to buy a small trailer and drive all over staying at certain windsurf spots. I’m now intrigued by this idea of the Home Exchange. Thanks for posting, Donna, and I’m looking forward to more 🙂

  4. Hi Donna, Oh my goodness the dog in his little shirt. This looks very interesting and I will be interested to read the following post on the program. All these wonderful things thanks to the internet. Louise

    1. Hi, Louise – Yes, Crusoe is quite the celebrity dashhound (book author, blogger and tv personality). You can read more about him here. Thanks for stopping by, and for commenting.

    1. Hi, Tom – I’m glad to hear that you are considering giving home exchange a try. The program has worked out really well for my husband and me. So far this system has taken us to: San Fransisco, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Palm Desert, Bangkok, Maroochydore (AU), Paris, South of France, Victoria, Ladner and Vancouver (several times). We also have a return exchange owing to us for Panama City and trips already planned for Cocoa Beach and Hawaii. If you have any questions about the program, please don’t hesitate to give me a shout.

  5. Hi Donna – what exciting adventures you’ve had with Home Exchange. My brother uses it frequently as well.
    I’ve not done tried it although I’ve booked vacation rentals via Homeaway/VRBO. I’m not sure how I feel about other people living in my house and I know my husband wouldn’t like it. Also, do people want to come to Toronto?
    But it’s certainly an economical way to go and worth a closer look.

    1. Hi, Marian – Thank you for reading, and for commenting. Home exchangers definitely want to come to Toronto (including me)! Currently, there are 153 homes listed on HomeExchange.com that are located in Toronto directly (not including the surrounding areas). Large, well-known cities are usually quite popular for home exchanges. Insurance companies tend to like home exchange (which they prefer to leaving your home empty). And as you say, it is also an economical way to travel. We will be staying in Cocoa Beach for 11 days. The equivalent home on VRBO goes for $400 USD/night. That being said, I totally understand that many people are not comfortable trading their homes and above all else, you need to honor your gut feeling. If you ever do take a closer look, please do not hesitate to let me know if have any questions that I can answer for you. (And no, I honestly do not work for Home Exchange–I just really love this method of travel).

  6. Home swapping is such a great way to travel, it does surprise me that more people do not do it – although I believe it is becoming more popular. We have been home exchanging for a long time and some years ago we set up a speciality website which caters only for the over 50s and Rotarians who wish to Home Exchange.
    I really recommend this way of holidaying, it is such a great way to make new friends in different parts of the world.

    1. Hi, Brian – I agree. Home exchange is an incredibly convenient and affordable way to travel. I am not surprised that it is becoming more and more popular. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your site. I believe that specialty home exchanges (seniors exchanging with seniors, teachers exchanging with teachers) can help increase the comfort zone for many people.

    2. I love the idea of an over 50 Home Exchange service. I know my husband and I would be more comfortable with an older couple swap. I’ll check out your site, Brian!

    1. Hi, Stephanie – It’s fun to be a pioneer and to be ahead of the curve. My husband and I were using Home Exchange long before many of our friends had even heard of it. I believe that VRBO and H.E. have many similar perks! Thanks for commenting.

  7. It sounds like a great program Donna. We did a job exchange years ago where we swapped houses, cars and jobs with a family in UK and they came to Australia for the year! It was a Department program for teachers and worked really well. It was a defining year for us travelling overseas for the first time with our three little daughters. I am interested in reading your other posts on the subject and may consider it for future holidays. Thanks!

  8. Hi Donna
    Yes many of our members comment on the fact that one reason they joined our website is the comfort they get from swapping with someone potentially their own age and with similar ideals. Although many of our members have exchanged previously this feeling is particularly prevalent with those new to the idea of swapping and who may be concerned with letting complete strangers into their home.
    One thing I always recommend is to communicate fully with potential swap partners to get to know more about them and their home and location and this also helps greatly with the comfort and security thought.

    1. Hi, Brian – Taking the time for good communication, and allowing yourself to feel comfortable with your potential exchange partners before committing, is essential. Thank you for sharing this good advice.

    1. Thanks, Jude – I’d be happy to answer any of your home exchange questions at any time. I will also be posting again soon about our Cocoa Beach home exchange.

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