House Exchange CLub Established 1953 and still Number 1 in Customer Service
A small sample of house exchange stories & comments
from our HomeLink members.
“Thank you very very much for helping us Katie. I believe it all worked after your wonderful directions. I have copied this information so will have no problems the next time we do this.” Darilyn, July 2017
“Dear Katie & Karl, I have nothing but praise and thanks for your excellent and honorable HomeLink organization! I plan to keep my international membership for as long as I can continue to exchange as well as referring my friends and associates to HomeLink. Many thanks again…” Dan, April 2017
“Thank you…for your house exchange program. From a satisfied customer.” Dan, March 2017
“Hi Karl & Katie, …Because of you two, we have had experiences traveling that nobody we know ever dreamed of. Altogether we swapped over 50 times, each one a new experience. We still are friends with some of the folks we met exchanging 30-35 years ago. It was a wonderful way to see the world and meet great folks. And, of course traveling as on board couriers just made it even more enjoyable (and cheap).” Robert, February 2017
“Many thanks Katie for all your assistance. I think I’ve finished updating our listing and now we’re excited to find another exchange. We sincerely appreciate all your help so we could startup again with HomeLink.” MaryAnn, February 2017
“Katie, You are always so helpful. Thank you so much. (we are the couple who became engaged on a home exchange in Cannes.) So, I think you could say your site has been a great success for us.” Claudia, February 2017
“Thank you for your fine service.” Tim, February 2017
“Thanks you guys. You are terrific! Lionel & Doris, February 2017
“Greetings. I tried your free month trial and just wanted to let you know how lovely it was. I had no idea such a beautiful community existed! We are not going to join at this time because we will be abroad next year and won’t be able to swap. But I hope to come back once we return to our house in 2018. I just wanted to let you know that I was very impressed and satisfied and am only not joining because of our logistics. Thank you for a great experience!” Jessica, February 2017
“I just wanted to thank you again, I found a place in NYC for my nieces and a place near Toronto and a place in Vermont for fall due to you helping me. My mom and I also have exchanges in Berlin and Brittany this summer. Hooray for Homelink and you two!” Char, January 2017
“Thanks, Katie, for the prompt attention and personal service! Love HomeLink!” Shelley, January 2017
“Thank you Katie for explaining that issue to me…I appreciate your personal, speedy reply.” Karey, December 2016
“Thanks for the lovely service you provide with HomeLink! Mark and I are very pleased. Have a great holiday season and best yet in 2017!, December 2016
“Thank you so much, that is great information and I will give it a try. I know your site gets the best recommendations from professional travelers such as Fodor’s.” Pat, November 2016
“Many thanks, Karl and Katie, you will be hearing from me again in the future. I think this is a great service, and I thank you for it!” Charles, November 2016
“Dear Katie, As soon as you fixed our inability to see your weekly list of possible exchanges, I saw one for Scotland that we liked. I emailed and we started a warm conversation. One month later we are booked for a month next summer on the west coast of Scotland. Thank you” Sharon, August 2016
“Karl and Katie and staff have always been very helpful.” Joe S., August 2016
“Thanks Katie!, As usual you are always right on and helpful when needed.” Jack, August 2016
“Hi Katie, Thank you so much for your reply. I will definitely use the agreement form next time…Thank you so much for all your help and guidance once again. We are looking forward to a next opportunity to go!” Lindsay & Rob, July 2016
“Thanks again for this great customer service.” Bev, November 2015
“Dear Karl and Katie, We are pleased to be back with HomeLink… LOVE the new website – so easy to use. Great job.” Roberta, November 2015
“Katie & Karl, Thank you so much for all your assistance today. I am much more confident now in my use of the new system and how I can keep my listings in top shape for getting trades. We love HomeLink and will use it for many years to come!” Carol, November 2015
“Hi Karl & Katie, Wow, your customer service & follow up is astounding!!” Vanessa, November 2015
“I am so very grateful for you effort. Thank you” Mary Kay, October 2015
“Thanks, Katie. I appreciate it. We had two great exchanges this summer….one in Ireland and another in France. Both were fantastic!” Elizabeth, October 2015
“Katie,Thanks so much for this information and for making the changes to our listings. Appreciate it. We have had the most enjoyable summer and fall, with a home exchange in New Brunswick. It allowed us time to explore the Maritime provinces of Canada and for the exchange couple to have our place on Orcas and then next year our home in Hawaii. This home exchange program is just the best! And so, thank you for the time and effort that you and Karl put into this. You are helping connect people around the world! Dan, October 2015
“Many thanks, Katie. We are pleased it is all clarified and everything is now okay regarding our renewal. We are so looking forward to continuing our amazing travel experiences that HomeLink offers and we have just booked the flights for our 16th and 17th HomeLink exchanges… Best wishes,” Bill & Ruth, October 2015
“Dear Katie, You are so quick to respond that you beat me to the computer this morning! …Thank you for your help and caring. HomeLink has been so much fun!!” Sondra, September 2015
“Thank you, Katie, so much! You did such a great job [helping us set up our listing]!”, Bob & Maris, September 2015
“Wow, a personal welcome email? That’s awesome. 🙂 Thank you for all of these links and all of your help!” Ashley, September 2015
“Thanks Katie! You and Karl are most accommodating.” Jack, August 2015
“Katie, Thank you so much for the time you take to answer emails. We feel totally supported on our search adventure. What great advice you gave us! Am blown away by the support you offer. Thank you so much!” Barb, August 2015
“Thanks, Katie! We are seeing the world thanks to you and Karl!” Sharon, July 2015
“Thanks once again for your excellent customer service!!” Ron, June 2015
“Thanks so much for the kind comments and all the assistance Katie: When I showed the listing to my wife, she said, “Geez, I’d like to live there!!”. 😊 The ordering and the labeling of the photos is perfect! Thanks again so much.” Larry, May 2015
“Katie, You and Karl are the real deal! Many thanks!” Jack, May 2015
“Wow, thank you for answering so promptly….I’m very impressed with your Homelink service.” mfa, April 2015
“…You guys do a fine job, everybody I know who is a member says that!” Linda, April 2015
“Katie, It is perfect!!!!! Thanks so much!!!! Mom and I decided to accept an exchange in Brussels and we are now looking at one in either France or Switzerland. Thank you for allowing us to travel through your hard work. I hope you know how much we appreciate you!!!!!!! Fondly” C, March 2015
“Thank you for the most excellent customer service!! You rock!” Wendy, March 2015
“…As a long-time Homelink member, I am looking forward to continuing with your fine service. Best” Dan, March 2015
“…But for now, many many thanks again for always making communications with you such a breeze and a delight and for your care and consideration in every matter.
Best regards” Maryann, March 2015
“Thank you for your help! And for demonstrating the integrity of Homelink!” S & S, March 2015
“perfect – thanks again for your usual enlightening, and as always prompt response.” Mick, February 2015
“Got it. Thank you for your help and thanks ever so much for the continued work on the site. Appreciate your help and having someone as a point of contact.” R, February 2015
“I appreciate your timely and helpful response, Katie. Thank you.” Eric, February 2015
“Hi, Thanks so much for this. The new website looks great, and we’re looking forward to a summer of travels. All the best” Beth, February 2015
“Thank you, Katie, and for all your help yesterday. So kind of you. (I printed out all the instructions you sent and will keep them in my file.)…Thanks again, your customer service is great!” Jan, January 2015
“Dear Katie, Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter. We are among Homelink ‘s most enthusiastic supporters and we will report to all who listen that even during a tedious website transition our concerns have met with efficiency and courtesy. Happy New Year!” Ellen, December 2014
“Thank you Karl and Katie, for your industry and imagination that created Homelink. Our experiences with exchanges have been life altering for the good. Happy Thanksgiving!
All our best.” Tim & Lori, November 2014
“Dear Katie, What a thorough and personal response you sent me! This is one thing that makes you great at your job. Thanks for taking care of my concern. (I’m currently planning my spring trip with a friend to Cuba!), Vicki, October 2014
“Thank you. We have always been impressed with your services, so keep up the good work.” John, October 2014
“Thanks Katie for the advise . You are always so responsive which I appreciate so much.” Claudia, October 2014
“Thank you, Karl. It’s always been a pleasure to work with you and Katie. I can’t tell you how many of my friends I’ve connected with your business. Never a complaint. Best…” Ed October 2014
“Hi Katie, Thank you so much! A lot of organizations would not be that honest!” Best, Ingrid, September 2014
“Thank you, Katie! We really appreciate it! We are going to New Zealand in a couple of months and thanks to HomeLink, we have two places to exchange with!” Jennifer and Bill, September 2014
“Thank you so much Katie [and Karl] Nobody runs a better business than you two. (I’m a psychiatrist so I am NEVER wrong.) Best to you both!…P.S. We are doing 101st exchange in NYC in December….” Joe & Diane, August 2014
“Hi Karl and Katie, We have been with HomeLink many many years. Started in the late 80’s I think. Just wanted to let you know that we are currently doing our 100th house exchange. In San Francisco. Almost all of our exchanges have been through HomeLink. We did maybe 8 or 10 with [another] but I have to say that the personal attention that an exchanger gets on HomeLInk cannot be matched. I realize [another] has more homes…. but.[you two do a MUCH better job with your customers]. Thanks for all the fun over the past 25+ years. Muchas gracias” J & D, August 2014
“Dear Katie, Very nice! Thank you!! I am gonna save this e-mail to remind me how nice you & Karl are….” G & L, August 2014
“Katie – Thanks very much for the fast service! Have a great day!!!” James, May 2014
“…There is no doubt that HomeLink has played a big part in contributing to the quality of our lives over the past twenty-some years. It is such a unique and positive experience…. There is simply no comparison [to other types of travel] to the depth and sheer sense of exploring, discovery and adventure that home exchanging holds.” J & Pat, April 2014
“…By the way – we LOVE your site and have had a number of fantastic house exchanges. We are lucky to live in an area that many people must want to visit. My only regret is that we don’t have more time and money for travel. We are going to the UK in August, but had to say no to an exchange with a family who live in a houseboat on the Sienne, just outside of Paris. Thanks for this great service you provide!” Mary & Tim, March 2014
“Dear Katie, We love your site and continue to recommend it to friends interested in house exchanges! …Thank you for the outstanding service and site.” Mary & S, March 2014
“Dear Katie, I just wanted to thank you so much for sending out the request e-mails and even adding their names!!!! …I really cannot express to you how you have enriched my life with your house exchange work. My dad was in the photo business as a Western Regional Manager for [a film company] when I was a kid and he used to like to say he was “selling happiness”! I think your work has helped so many fulfill life long dreams!!!! C, February 2014
“Hi Katie, Thanks so much for your quick response. My husband would LOVE someone like you around the house for all his computer problems! Everything is back to normal and I responded to the people.” Harriet, February 2014
“Dear Katie. Thank you for the [the update regarding membership fee renewal]. I just want you to know that I appreciate the integrity of your company.” Rose, February 2014
“…Have done many hostings and youth exchanges, our kids have even used home link when they travel to get hostings from home link members. Homelink is a way of life for us. We have friends all over Europe, Australia, and Africa because of it. Thanks and happy trading.” Deb & Ted, January 2014
“Katie, you are so helpful! Yes, my gut feeling is that they are experienced and not to worry. Thank you so much for your input, we really appreciate it.” Maggie, January 2014
“…We just retired and hope to do even more home exchanging. It has been an amazing experience. Maybe we have been lucky over the last 17 years, but I can honestly say, we have nothing but wonderful memories and have met so many generous, thoughtful and helpful families. Happy Holidays to you too.” Renee & Bill, December 2013
“We may be among your oldest — and longest term — members, and we just want to take this opportunity to tell you how much we have loved being part of Homelink. We were introduced to it by the mother of a friend, probably twenty-five years ago — and she may actually have been one of the first members! In those days we used to write to people by old fashioned mail. We became very close friends with one of our first exchangers, who we now visit with or have visit us at least once a year; but we’ve made many, many other terrific friends over the years. So thank you to both you and Karl for providing this wonderful service!!!!” Diane & Joel, November 2013
“You folks are so nice! Thank you very much. We were active members for about 13 years and travelled by exchanging 13 times. Then we moved and it took us 5 years to get back to wanting to travel…this year we will get serious about it.” Ruth, November 2013
“THANK YOU SO MUCH!! You are providing a wonderful service and I will continue to recommend you as I have done in the past!” Marilyn, October 2013
“Hi Katie…. can’t help but am impressed that you would go to bat for the gal left in the lurch. Homelink is a class act.” Lee & Jim, October 2013
“Karl & Katie: Thanks…. We have had nothing but good house exchanges over the years and have even met a couple of families with whom we have become friends. We are in Germany at the moment, on our last leg home after back-to-back house exchanges in Salzburg, Austria and Bordeaux, France. Six weeks is a long time to be away, so we are looking forward to staying put before we think about heading out again. We talk up house exchanges all the time and 2 of my (adult) kids hope to start doing exchanges in a few years with their families. Thanks again.” Doug & Andrea, September 2013
“Hi Katie and Karl, Just wanted to tell you two what a good job you do. My wife Diane and I have been with HomeLink many many years. You both have been prompt and informative with the questions we’ve asked over the years, your rates are fair and your web site is perfect. We’ve done 96 exchanges so far and another one in two weeks in NYC.” Joe & Diane, August 2013
“OK“ thanks. We are heading off to a couple of back to back exchanges in Europe in a couple of weeks. So Homelink has been good for us and we are planning a couple of others later this year.” David, July 2013
“Thank you so much! I’ve said it before, but I will say it again, you two are so responsive. It is a pleasure to work with you. I will definitely share our story with you in the next few days.” Molly, June 2013
“…Incidentally we greatly value HomeLink. We have been members of two other services…. Neither one had members who responded as consistently or seemed to have the ethics we espouse.” Bruce & Melanie, June 2013
“Wow! Â Thank you. Â You all take very good care of us.” Jeanetta, June 2013
“FANTASTIC! Thank you so much for the helpful and prompt reply :), Aloha” H & S, May 2013
“We continue to enjoy house exchange adventures and are about to go on our 8th swap this summer. We have tried exchanges with [2 other house exchange Companies], but now limit our search of exchange opportunities through HomeLink. We found that [competitor] was too limited in swap opportunities and
we did not like their web site. Our experience with [competitor] was not good as it seemed that many of their members were really looking to rent their place rather than to accept a simultaneous or non-simultaneous exchange. As for Homelink, we like your exchange agreement and your web site plus we have had nothing but positive experiences with our six Homelink exchanges. Keep up the good work.” Bruce & Melanie, April 2013
“Hi Katie, by totally different I mean that your listings are not duplicates of the [competitor’s] listings, in addition, I see many more professionals using your site. Better Different. Thank you again for your professionalism and customer service.” Carl, March 2013
“THANK YOU! We are impressed with your website and services and glad we decided to try it out.” Seth & Mary, March 2013
“Thanks very much Katie – excellent service as usual!” Justine, February 2013
“Hi Katie, Most importantly, thanks once again. My experience over the last three years is that you guys are always perfect. Perfect. Thanks again. So much – and as always…” John R, February 2013
“Thank you so much for the quick reply. I really appreciate this very much. It was really helpful” Eleni, February 2013
“HI, Many thanks for your prompt answer and offer to help. It looks as if we found a replacement for our exchange already. I got two offers in the meantime since i wrote to you. So your support system works! Many thanks. I’ll keep you posted!” S.B., February 2013
“Glad I could help, Katie. You folks do such an excellent job with HomeLink. I know I speak for many when I say thanks so much. We appreciate it.” JD & Pat, January 2013
“…My partner and I have had 2 amazing experiences thanks to HomeLink! I am very grateful for the service and everything it offers. We had a wonderful time this fall in Paris and in Barcelona thanks to HomeLink. We met friendly and warm people and loved our trips. Our home was well cared for by our visitors. Best wishes to you for 2013!” Rachel, January 2013
“Hi Katie, thank you so much for being so honest! I really appreciate that! That’s really great.” Erica, December 2012
“…I have seen quite a few home swap sites on the internet but the HomeLink one was the one which gave me the most confidence.” Martin, December 2012
“Wow…has it been 20 years?? Thanks so much. Our Homelink exchanges have been some of our most memorable travels….always good experiences.”, C & C, December 2012
“…WE have enjoyed HomeLink house swap and especially the help you have given over the phone. The personal touch is great. We recommend it everywhere we go.”, L & J, September 2012
“Thank you Katie, We really like being part of the HomeLink crowd! You are the BEST!”, Tullis, July 2012
“Hello, I am a new member [since July 15, 2012] and I am already making plans for a swap so thank you for all you do to make this happen.”, Judy, July 2012
“Thank you for your prompt reply. Good service.”, Nancy, July 2012
“Thank you very much. It is a pleasure to get such a quick response.”, Barbara, May 2012
“Hello Katie, Thanks for your prompt and friendly assistance. I am enjoying HomeLink house swap and feel good about signing up. Best regards, M, May 2012
“Wow, Katie! Customer Service Surpreme!…Thanks for the info.” John C, May 2012
“Hi Katie, Gosh, I just don’t know how you always answer so fast with all the people you have to keep track of. Thanks for straightening out my site. I am not so computer literate sometimes…We are so happy that we are now retired and can take advantage of HomeLink. When we were members before we had to turn down so many offers due to our working schedule and little vacation time. Now we are ready to GO, GO, GO! Thanks………………..can’t wait to exchange!” L, January 2012
“Dear Katie, Thank you so much for all of your help with my house swap questions, renewal, rental, etc…You have been truly wonderful to work with. All of my exchanges have been wonderful! Thank you so much for bringing such fabulous experiences to so many! I am truly grateful!” Maggie M, September 2011
“Dear Karl and Katie, I just want to thank you for the wonderful job you have done in creating and managing HomeLink so well. I am a longtime member and have enjoyed many fascinating experiences by exchanging my house…” Washington DC, September 2011
“Hi Katie, Well, that was the best example of customer reponse I believe I have ever received from any service-provider, anywhere anytime, even going back to the 1960’s, when people were more considerate and responsive. Thank you.” David C, June 2011
“Thank you. I think you run a class act business. I appreciate the customer service so much!” Tom & Barbara , March 2011
“Katie, Another compliment for your company. I joined and created listings on HomeLink and [another house swap company] on the same day. For every one request from [another house exchange company] we are receiving three from HomeLink. HomeLink must have superior management.” Curtis Holloway & Gabrielle Starr, February 2011
“Dear Katie & Karl, This was the most enjoyable experience imaginable…and we haven’t even had our trip yet. We found the most delightful people to swap with and the search was fun and easy to do. Your website and individual care were extremely important to us and we are sure we will continue to travel this way into the future as long as we can. Thank you for everything you have done for us. Happy holidays to you.” Cyndy B, December 2010
“HomeLink has the best website of any house exchange site I investigated. The site makes it very easy to communicate with other members, view listings, and determine exact location. Importantly, unlike other sites, your listings are kept current – with members who are active and interested in exchanges. Thank you for your good work and customer service.” San Francisco, December 2010
“HomeLink has been my only way to vacation for the past 7 years. I love the experience and have made wonderful friends from the people who have exchanged with me. Thank you for your wonderful company.” Dana, December 2010
“…I can only say that HomeLink is a wonderful organization for us. We have done 18 exchanges on 3 continents and have no regrets whatsoever. It’s a wonderful way to travel.” Veronique, December 2010
“Dear Katie and Karl—just wanted to add my comments to those you have already received on house exchange. We will have our 100th exchange-since l975- tomorrow in Amelia Island, FL. What a great life we have had with exchanges! Very few complaints, and so many new friends. We started exchanging when our kids were toddlers and now we take our great grandchildren with us. I have one word of advice-an exchanger must be flexible and ready to laugh at minor inconveniences or unexpected events. I could write a book and it would be a comedy about house exchange experiences.”
Linda- Santa Fe, NM, October 2010
“Hi-Just a quick note to thank you for providing HomeLink. It is much more than a convenience or a process – its a way of life! We have marveled with our exchangers at the incredible article of faith we all particpate in. People outside [this way of life] are amazed that we consider allowing “strangers” into our house and cars. There must be a self-select process that brings only honest, kind, generous people together. We have been on exchanges to Del Mar and Dana Point CA and last month to Vancouver – all fantastic. Combined with frequent flyer miles, It?s the ultimate travel bargain! Again, thanks.” Skip Hare”, October 2010
“We want, first of all sent to you our CONGRATULATIONS! Because these house exchange works, to be honest we pay in some others companies of these type, and the one that works better is yours. ” Alejandro H.
“I just signed up for HomeLink yesterday, received my member number and password this morning, received three lovely exchange offers today, and made one house swap offer myself — which was accepted, and we’re working out those details. All within 24 hours! I am impressed and very happy.” Linda B.
“I would also like to let you know how happy we have been with HomeLink. We first started with house Exchange with very poor results. Since we joined your service we have had a constant stream of inquiries. We have exchanges set for Paris in July, London in September, plus Stuttgart and the South of Spain next year. This is great. ” Jim G.
“Within about 12 hours of registering we got the perfect swap” Susan S.
“I finally got the exchange we want after four months of trying. Hurray for HomeLink!” Susan L. (note: Susan joined HomeLink just seven days prior to sending the email)
“We just returned from a 14-week trip involving 3 consecutive house exchanges in England and France. Sure love house exchanging! Thank you” ? Bobbi & Gene K.
“I am happy to report that we have recently returned from a 2 month fabulous house exchange in Spain and Italy. This makes for 5 wonderful long term vacations thanks to HomeLink. After observing my brother-in-law’s success, we were hooked. All of our friends are envious. The HomeLink organization is great! “? Rhonda A.
“Thank you for a well-organized site and a wonderful service provided. We had tried a different house exchange site before and yours was easier to cross-reference, look for exactly what we wanted and had a broader base of users so that it was no problem matching up with what we were looking for. We just returned from a great 5 week holiday in Great Britain where we did two separate exchanges. Both families and houses were terrific and it is definitely the only way to go with kids in tow.” ? Tristen T
“I am so excited about HomeLink. We have arranged an exchange for a month in Italy beginning next week. It’s a trip I’ve been dreaming of for about 10 years and could never have done without your organization. Everyone I’ve corresponded with or met through HomeLink so far is someone I’d be proud to call a friend and feel enriched by knowing. Thank you for your great service.” ? Penny M.
“Just came back from my first house swap ever – me in France, them in Santa Monica – and it worked wonderfully. we had the best time. I’ve been telling all my friends about your organization. Thanks for all your work and for setting up HomeLink.” ? Sharon W.”
“This is a great program. We have met some great people & had marvellous holidays.”? Eugene & Mary R.
“We’ve just returned from a very successful exchange in Scotland and look forward to our next one scheduled for December.” John E
“We just came back from a magnificent month in Paris. Our exchangers were exceptional, they were the most considerate people. They replaced everything they had used in our place, including salt!!” Olga B
“Karol and I had a wonderful swap with people in Redondo Beach, CA, for our honeymoon in June and we are going to have a swap with people in Yorkshire, England the end of September. Thank you” Richard W
Ron and Phyl Frasa – “We have been members of HomeLink International since 1984 and have been enjoying frequent, wonderful, local and overseas house exchange holidays – now eighteen in all! All of them in comfortable houses and interesting locations at minimal costs, while making some lasting friendships with ‘exchangers’ and their friends.
During our eighteen exchanges we have never had anything missing from our house or damaged, except for the accidental breakage of crockery or an ornament – which we have also accidentally done in our exchanger’s house.
We would not be able to afford so many holidays if we had to pay for motel accommodation, rental cars, and dining out all the time.
Wishing you and your members lots of exciting future exchanges.”
Jason & Meredith – “Hi, we have just got back from a major trip from UK, we had 3 house swaps in UK in the one trip. We also traveled with a 2 and 4 year old with us. Wow what a hall!!
We traveled right across England from Devon County to Scotland to Ireland and back, around 20,000 kilometres in 4 months, 85 castles and a hell of a lot of B&Bs to boot. I loved it, my wife … well just put it this way, I’m still sucking up to her as she ended up being the baby sitter.
People still look at us as if we’re strange. They say “You went where? For how long? With two kids at that age? Are you all there?” The answer to that must be “no”. But you only have one life, LIVE IT. By the way we don’t live in the grand palace, but do have a nice three bed with a spa on the Sunshine Coast 5 min from the Beach.”
Wendy Bradley – “Last year we made four hospitality exchanges to France, Holland, Germany, and England. This year I am returning to Europe to spend more time with friends made on previous hospitality exchanges in the Lake District, and in Burgundy in France.
“There are some very special experiences that are unique to hospitality exchange holidays. The most important has been friendships that last long after the visit is over. We like the sense of being a part of the place where we are staying. And having your hosts there to make suggestions each day about what to see, often away from the beaten track, makes for experiences and memories different to the usual.
“If you can’t live without every aspect of your life being predictable, if you don’t really like meeting new people, if you don’t think of life as a wonderful adventure with surprises around every corner, then hospitality and house exchange are probably not for you.
“But if like us, you travel to meet people and learn about how different and similar we all are, then hospitality is the holiday for you. Good luck, enjoy the experience, give it a go!”
June Arnold – “Well, we have just returned from our 7 week UK holiday, when we explored England, Scotland, and Wales, and it was great! Our hosts met us at Heathrow, had the flat stocked with food for us and anything else we might need and went out of their way to assist us. Our house base at Newmarket near Cambridge provided us with a ‘house away from house’.
Now it is our turn to do the same for them when they come here at Christmas. We trust that we can make their stay as enjoyable as ours was.
Long live HomeLink International!”
Mrs Rayson – “Just a short note to let you know that our house swap in Melbourne in August was a great success. We also had a swap in Canada last September and couldn’t have been happier with the results. Each time we have met the people that we have swapped with and they have kept in touch.
In February we head off to Cornwall in England for a swap and we can’t wait – we feel as though we know the people from Cornwall already after many phone calls and letters.
We feel that house swapping is a brilliant concept and we look forward to many more.”
Leanne Watson – “Using the HomeLink International directories we arranged a world trip with three exchanges, one in Italy, one in Switzerland, and the other in the USA.
I constantly tell people that our world holiday was better than we ever could have wished for.
We have since had two swaps closer to house – one near Moreton Bay in Brisbane and another to a house on the Gold Coast. All have been great holidays, and we are looking forward to many more.”
Norma Turnbull – “We are enthusiastic house exchangers since our first swap in May, when we exchanged cars and houses with Berry and Barbara from Sorrento in Perth.
At present we are planning a more extensive trip through HomeLink International to Canada and North America, and have already had two international HomeLink members stay here with us, with more expected in the New Year.”
Norma Wykes – “Since we wrote last year we have been house and hospitality exchanging to England, France, the Hunter Valley, Runaway Bay, Mildura and the Barossa Valley. And we have also hosted people from Germany, USA and Canada. Now we have invitations to spend time in Lake Tahoe and Napa Valley in California, also the Burgundy region of France and the Black Forest in Germany.”
Rob & Judy Mathieson – “We have had two successful exchanges so far. Our first swap was to Beechworth! We had never thought of going there for a holiday, but thought “Why not!” as this was the reason for holiday swaps. We met with our exchange couple on the way. I was a little nervous, thinking what if we don’t like them! But all was well – they were a lovely couple and we filled each other in on the finer points of our houses.
“Our second swap was to Kangaroo Island – what a delight! It was our exchange partners’ first swap and they were really apprehensive. However, we talked to them on the phone and during the exchange, they said that if this was what holiday swapping was about then they were completely sold on the idea.
“We have been pouring through the latest HomeLink directory and look forward to our next trip soon!”
Kate Quinton – “Our first exchange was with an English couple – we swapped our holiday unit on the Sunshine Coast with their luxury holiday apartment on the French Riviera. Overlooking the Marina and the Bay des Anglais it was very centrally situated. We then had the use of our German exchanger’s apartment in the French Alps, set in the most marvellous scenery, while their house was in a small village just a few kilometres from the Rhine. This was an ideal base to explore the many medieval castles and villages in the area. We then stayed with the Netherlands couple in their house on a dyke – a hospitality exchange.
“We were delighted with our exchanges. We went prepared to take what was offered, any small inconveniences, which were no fault of our hosts, were rendered insignificant by the warmth of our welcome and the delightful setting of the houses. All the houses we stayed in were very comfortable and welcoming to come house to. Our days were filled with relaxing at the beach, picnicking by the Rhine, feasting on mussels in Belgium or sampling the wines in France. Even just shopping for food supplies in Europe was a cultural experience in itself. We definitely recommend house exchange and we are now planning our next trip!”
Christine Hall – “My husband and I have just returned from a round-the-world-holiday experience of a lifetime, thanks to a large contribution from HomeLink International. Our first two swaps were in Alberta Canada for 8 weeks – 5 weeks in Rocky Mountain House, a small town east of the Rockies, and 3 weeks in Calgary.
“Next swap – Vienna, a hospitality exchange. We were a little uncertain about accepting hospitality exchange, but our host was so keen to have us visit we could hardly have said no. It was a wonderful visit in a small village, 20 kilometres by train from Vienna and next to the famous woods.
“Then back to England for three weeks in Nottinghamshire. Our fellow exchangers were teachers and the timing was perfect for them – in the August school holidays – a happy coincidence. We didn’t actually meet, but our cars passed on the A1! Everything worked perfectly. Thank you HomeLink for this wonderful adventure.”
Ian and Silvi – “Our first exchange was last year to Norway and we are waiting for our family from Spain to come this weekend. A second Spanish family will be here all of March. We hope to travel to Spain in Sept/Oct next year. We will then catch up with our Norwegian exchange family. We will be searching for more exchanges in Europe before our trip. So far everything has worked very well for us.”
Barry and Maureen Rogers – “We spent a wonderful 2 weeks in Wenduine in Belgium on the coast. To travel by train we bought a 50 euro train pass which enabled us to travel as far as possible in one direction for 5 euros each and then the same for return. We visited a lovely town called Ipers and went through a fantastic museum which has a simulated no-mans land complete with sound effects. Our host, who moved out of his apartment for us, took us to Paris for the weekend and we saw so much as he had spent a lot of time there. Highlight of our trip.
His daughter came to our house for 2 weeks the next year and she was a great person to have around. Not a member now (but still hoping to be again if husband’s health improves), I would only stay in apartments with handy access to rail or transport, close to shops, and with good security. Houses out in the sticks with no conveniences would be a no-no. Always go to the local pub, even if you don’t drink, and the locals will be delighted.
HomeLink is a great way to see the world! Thanks for including the ex-members in your newsletters.
Joanne and Kim – “We exchanged to Oxford, UK in 2004/5 and recently returned from an exchange to Hobart. Both times we have had wonderful experiences with the house and car exchange. This time we were fortunate to meet our swapees – and we had a terrific dinner and chat. Now we are looking for exchanges in UK and France for the Rugby World Cup in 2007 – and feel confident it will all work out beautifully.”
Fran – “We were in Europe for six months last year and did six hospitality/house/non-simultaneous exchanges. But, they were in France, Germany and Austria. Next May we are off to Italy, and are currently working on an exchange in Scotland for 2008.”
Tess & Dave – “We have recently taken early retirement and joined HomeLink last Oct … have loved house exchange!!! We spent all of September 2006 in a delightful cottage with beautiful gardens in a small village called Sparford in the UK and 3 weeks in August in a country property in Belgium. We also spent 3 weeks in Auckland in May, again delightful house and garden.”
DISCLAIMER: The comments and stories displayed above are unsolicited, and have been received over time by HomeLink International in written correspondence from its members. Some of these members may no longer hold current membership status. HomeLink is unable to verify the accuracy of any statements or assertions made by its members, and waives any responsibility for same. These are not to be considered a representation as to the likelihood of similar results being attained by any other person in future.