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As if anyone actually needs one another reason to visit the magnificent city of Istanbul, both veteran and rookie travelers alike now have just that this summer: yet another reason to visit Istanbul.

From May 31 to June 29, music lovers can enjoy the 43rd Annual Istanbul Music Festival. Whether you travel to Istanbul specifically for this festival or if you just find yourself in this grand city during the month of June, it seems a good bet to take advantage of this internationally acclaimed month-long event. The theme this year for the event is “Cultural Landscapes,” which, according to press materials, Read More

home exchange members

Home exchangers are everywhere! Our founder, Ed Kushins, was asked for a hug while hiking recently from passersby, Ray and Leah. They shared some great stories about their home exchange experiences, two in particular being especially memorable.

On a recent Tuesday in March, Terry and I were doing a hike near Skull Rock in Joshua Tree National Park. Pretty much out in the boonies.

As we approached a couple about our age coming towards us, they excitedly pointed at my t-shirt and said “HomeExchange?!”, and asked us if we did home exchange. Terry explained that not only did we do home exchange, but that I was the President of HomeExchange.com.

The lady rushed up to me, opened her arms and said “May I give you a hug?”

They proceeded to tell us how many great home exchanges they have had and how it has changed their lives. Retired, addicted travelers, they love to RV, but home exchange has allowed them to go farther afield and travel internationally for longer periods because for them, once they got there it didn’t cost any more than staying at home. Read More

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Two women from two very different families express their passion for travel on their blog, TribeInTow, where they highlight tips about how to travel the world with a tiny tribe in tow. Find out how they managed to save $5,920 using HomeExchange.com.

After taking their families on a home exchange to Bali, Stephi and Sophie noticed that every time they talked about their home exchange vacation that people would get excited about the idea. The concept of exchanging homes for another in an exotic location, completely for free, seems to be one that a lot of people are enthusiastic about, but that many have yet to try.

home exchange travel alternative

For Stephi and Sophie, home swapping immediately appealed to them: they both live in Byron Bay, one of Australia’s most beautiful spots, with their tribes, so they knew that the demand for home exchanges in the area are high. That said, no matter where you live, with a little effort, you are sure to find someone who wants to exchange with you.

As Stephi and Sophie suggest on their blog, “the best thing you can do is to be open to all destinations. That way, once you list your house on homeexchange.com, you can wait for potential swaps to come in. You’ll be surprised where they may take you.” Read More

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In Part 1 of this blog, we listed 5 of the most popular destinations on HomeExchange.com. Here are 5 more top travel destinations to fuel your imagination even further. Your travel dreams are only limited by your imagination. Just imagine yourself here.

Paris

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Ah, Paris. The City of Lights and the City of Love, definitely on the list of dream destinations. It’s not hard to picture yourself here, is it? Imagine looking out from the top of the Eiffel Tower, or at the city lights from the top of the Arc de Triomphe in the evening.

Since lodging in Paris is so expensive, many travelers find themselves unable to visit or are forced to shorten their stay. With over 2,000 homes, apartments (and even houseboats) listed in Paris, HomeExchange.com has more beds under management than any single hotel company in the world. And they’re all available to the you as a HomeExchange.com Member at no charge.

Live the life of a local. Armed with knowledge shared by your exchange partner, stroll to the neighborhood cafe for a cup of espresso, or get some freshly made croissants from the local baker. Browse through the fresh produce markets and bring home the beautiful bounty to enjoy.

Take a journey back in time by exploring the secret “covered passageways” of Paris. Of course, Paris takes her rightful place on the list of 10 Best Museum Cities, but you can also find the romantic side of the city in almost every arrondissement.

For a more personal take on the charms of home exchanging in Paris, professional journalist Sandra Harris Ramini shares her favorite suggestions in Ah Paris, Where Only the River’s Sane.

To further help you save on your stay in Paris, look through this list of 10 Fun and Free Things in Paris and consider tips like the Paris Pass found in this overview of 10 Ways to Save Around the World.

 

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inexpensive honeymoon ideas

Within a week of signing up on HomeExchange.com, Sheila and Tom received an offer from a friendly couple in Scotland to home exchange with them– and the timeframe was just 2 weeks after their wedding – exactly when they hoped to honeymoon. It was UNBELIEVABLY PERFECT!

A honeymoon home exchange? Tom and Sheila first heard about home exchange vacations from their friends in San Francisco, who had been on 40+ home exchanges and told the couple about their wonderful travel experiences. Their friends explained that it’s a great way to see the world while staying in nice places with all of the comforts of home: full kitchens, laundry facilities, and often cars, too. While all of this sounded great to Tom and Sheila, they wondered if anyone would really want to exchange with them. While their home is nice, it is in the Southwest suburbs of Denver, Colorado and the soon-to-be newlyweds wondered if anybody would really want to vacation in the “burbs”?

When Tom and Sheila heard about home exchanging, they were in the process of planning their wedding, so there really wasn’t much time left over in their busy lives for anything extra, like creating profile and looking for matches. But, they made time, took some photos of their home, and created their profile on HomeExchnge.com. Certain that it would take awhile to find the right home exchange and to make plans, the couple didn’t think that they would home exchange for quite awhile.

But, maybe they would get lucky. After all, they hadn’t yet planned the best part of their wedding – the honeymoon! They knew they would find something wonderful for their honeymoon vacation, regardless. Ideally, they wanted to spend it romancing in a country that neither of them had visited before, but the perfect destination still hadn’t come to mind. Read More

Travel blog fenzi family

Two teachers from Italy have swapped their home since 2006, capturing each exchange story on their personal travel blog. (Check out their blog homeofstars.blogspot.com).

We reached out to an inspiring couple, Roberto and Alida, who are both teachers, and who have captured their family’s travel history on a blog that organizes their vacation photos, locations and stories from each of the home exchanges they have shared together.

It all began with an exchange with André and Brigitte, a great retired couple from Brittany, France. André is an engineer and Brigitte teaches Latin. The Fenzi family exchanged with them for 3 seasons, but emotionally, they tell us, their friendship gets stronger after each phone call, each letter, and each parcel that they send to each other. They are still friends to this day. Read More

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In Part 1, we showed you where Leonardo Da Vinci and Claude Monet found their muse: in Giverny, France and Florence, Italy — respectively. Today, we are going to explore two other great artists, Pablo Picasso and Vincent Van Gogh, and the landscapes that inspired these great artists.

3. Pablo Picasso
Barcelona, Spain

While Picasso spent most of his life in France, it was in Barcelona that the artist spent his formative years, and where he considered his home.

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Picasso learned to sketch before he learned how to speak. As his mother recalled, his first words were “piz, piz”, a shortening of lápiz, which is the Spanish word for “pencil.” The bustling industrialist Catalan capital was in a period of huge growth during Picasso’s youth, embracing progressive ideas about art and society as it dashed toward the 20th century. Picasso created thousands of drawings and paintings that were inspired by the cityscape of Barcelona and its natives, many of which can be seen at Barcelona’s Picasso Museum today. Read More

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It’s Happening In YOUR Neighborhood… and HIS neighborhood, and HER neighborhood.

An Exciting New Tool: HomeExchange.com Maps.

Browse through over 65,000 home exchange listings around the world using the new, fully interactive map, a very powerful tool to help you locate your perfect home exchange partner.
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