Home Base Holidays: 1985 - 2010
Issue: 64June - July 2010

Home Swappers Newsletter is published 6 times a year to provide information on home exchange vacations for current and recent members of Home Base Holidays and Newsletter subscribers.

25th Anniversary Quiz Winner!
Home Base Holidays - 25th year!
To continue our 25th anniversary year celebrations, in the last issue we invited entries in a quiz to win a year's free membership to Home Base Holidays.

To enter, all you needed to do was find and name three guest bloggers this year to date on our blog, Travel the Home Exchange Way. All entries received had correct answers and we're sorry there could only be one winner. And that winner is, ta-da, Gara from Sydney! Gara's answers:
Other correct answers:
Gara writes:

'As a novice home exchanger and a single woman, although I would love to try home exchange, I feel a little challenged by the prospect, so I am delighted to read these helpful stories by experienced home exchangers. Maybe this will be my year!'
See Gara's attractive new exchange offer in Sydney, HE24311
Join Home Base Holidays!
Join Home Base Holidays
Home Base Holidays is now in it's 25th year of helping people arrange home exchange vacations all across the world.

One year membership still only 29

Two year membership just 39!

Join Home Base Holidays!
Featured Listing!
Cape Town, South Africa

Home Base Holidays member - HE23114Character home converted from the original stables. The garden and pool lead off a beautiful covered veranda spanning the full length of the house.

Exchange Request:
France, Italy and Open to Offers.

View this home exchange offer...
A Note to Home Exchange 'Virgins'
Home Base Holidays listings - HE23943
"Home exchanging was recommended to me many years ago, long before the advent of the internet.  Although it sounded interesting, being a little less adventurous than I perhaps am now I had dismissed the idea out of hand. But my interest was rekindled many years later when in 2006 I stumbled upon the Home Base Holidays website. I soon realised this was an opportunity not to be missed, so discussed it with my partner, who reluctantly agreed to give it a go. 
My partner's concerns are shared by many 'exchange virgins' - what if our house is wrecked? What if our pets are mistreated?  What if our possessions are damaged or stolen? and so on. But his fears were allayed once we embarked on our first exchange.  We haven't looked back since, and would recommend it anyone.  Living on a somewhat limited budget, exchanging has given us the chance to see places we might never otherwise visit, stay in some wonderful properties and make some fantastic friends along the way.  We have never experienced exchangers damaging our property.  Far from it.  The house is always cleaner and tidier on our return than when we left!  And we have always been made to feel welcome and at home in other exchangers' homes. 
Sounds too good to be true? Think there must be a catch? Well take my word for it, there isn't!  It really is a cheap and convenient way to see the world.  The only problem we have ever encountered was on our very first exchange, when we had to return home early due to an unforeseen family crisis. Of course, we could not ask our guests to leave our home, so we spent a week sleeping on friends' sofas and floors.  But even that was a small price to pay for the holiday, albeit shorter than planned.  So my advice is to always have a contingency plan, and be sure you have somewhere else to stay should your holiday be cut short unexpectedly.  So go on all you doubters, give it a go.  After all, you shouldn't knock it 'til you've tried it!"- Jennie Murrain. 
See Jennie's current Home Base Holidays listing (HE23943), for her Victorian cottage in historic Colchester, the oldest recorded town in the UK. Open to offers anywhere in school holidays, including during the 2012 Olympics.

Although seldom needed, it is a reassurance to have a 'contingency plan' for accommodation as Jennie suggests. We would love to hear details of the contingency plans you put in place as part of your home exchange arrangements. Please contact us with your suggestions.

Start Planning your Christmas Swap!

Christmas in Australia?"Have Christmas and New Year in sunny Australia! We are looking for an exchange (or maybe two short ones) over the Christmas break, December 2010 to end of Jan 2011, between one to four weeks (has to be our school holidays). We'd like to go to Europe or beyond - possibly Spain, France, UK or Ireland but all offers considered. Our home is architect designed, comfortable and roomy, with a pool and close to beach and village."
                See exchange offer in Byron Bay, NSW, Australia

It may seem ages until Christmas but, as this is a popular time for home exchanges and flights can get booked up early, it's a good idea to start your search for a home swap several months ahead. If you are particularly interested in a Christmas exchange, draw extra attention to your offer in the first paragraph in your description as in the example above (so it will be seen in search results).

How to Find Christmas Exchange Offers:
  1. Do a search on a country of interest. Search results are arranged by membership dates, with the most recent first. The results can be re-ordered, including by dates of exchange wanted (see the drop down 'sort by' list at the top of search results pages). This will enable you to find members looking for December 2010 exchanges plus the many who are 'open to offers' on dates.
  2. Detailed Search: type Christmas in the box beside 'Keyword Search' after choosing the country and any other criteria. Search. Search results will include all listings that include 'Christmas' within the text (as in the example).
  3. Detailed Search: as before but this time type 'Christmas' in the box beside 'To find members looking for an exchange in your location, enter your city, county/state, or country here'. As members aren't limited to choosing countries, many also use this field to highlight specific requests.

Save 20%
To encourage early listing for Christmas swaps, join Home Base Holidays now, including the code, xmas, on the membership form to receive a 20% discount on the regular one or two year membership rate. What are you waiting for - join today!

Join Home Base Holidays!  (Enter promotional code: xmas)
Offer Expires: 1st August 2010
"we had a fantastic holiday last year by the way - thanks to you guys!"

                                                        Helen,  Ireland. See current exchange offer, HE22775

Discounted airport parking, airport hotels with parking, coach or rail travel and airport lounges at most UK airportsPre-book your UK holiday extras and save pounds: airport parking, airport hotels with parking, coach or rail travel and airport lounges at most UK airports. Click here...

Quick Links

Further Info

Newsletter Contributions:
We are always pleased to hear from members and subscribers and to receive contributions for the newsletter and blog - short reports on your exchange experiences, tips you feel would be useful to those new to the idea of home swapping and any questions you have on home exchange. Please include 'home exchange' in the subject line when contacting us as messages with no subjects (or dubious sounding subject lines!) or unexpected attachments may end up in our spam folder and deleted unread.

Be Alert:
The Home Base Holidays private member area is for one-to-one exchange offers between members only, not for any other purpose. Please let us know if you receive any other type of message via your member area. Never respond to unsolicited messages from unknown sources.

Further Information:
Check the archives to read past issues of Home Swappers Newsletter. Also, don't forget to visit the Travel the Home Exchange Way blog for regular information and updates plus special exchange requests. To receive notices by email whenever a new post is added (generally no more than three a week), add your email address to the box above 'Get email updates' in the left hand column of Travel the Home Exchange Way. And you can now follow us on Twitter!

All Home Swappers content is copyright and cannot be used in any form without written permission from Home Base Holidays. However, please feel free to forward the newsletter (in full) to friends and colleagues who may be interested in home exchange (use the Forward Email link below the newsletter).

Happy Home Swapping!

Lois & Mark
Home Base Holidays
email: info@homebase-hols.com
phone: +44(0)20 8886 8752
web: http://www.homebase-hols.com