Michelle, a HomeExchange member who has done nearly one dozen home swaps, first found out about HomeExchange through a Google search. She shares her experience doing a house swap in Nice, France with her daughters in 2018.
What was it that attracted you to this home exchange opportunity?
I wanted to go on holiday in southern France and my preference was a reciprocal exchange. Jacky's home looked nice on his profile and he was very kind in the messages we exchanged before traveling. He and his wife were also willing to watch my cat!
What happened when you arrived at the home swap?
My host welcomed us personally to his home. He and his wife gave us a tour of their home and information about getting around the city. They explained how to water the plants and lock up the house. They also asked us to be careful with their new sofa.
What did you see or do during your house swap exchange?
My daughters and I visited Nice over the 3 day vacation. We walked quite a bit, rented bikes on the promenade and enjoyed the museum. We followed our hosts' advice for getting around the city and going to shops. We also took the train to a nearby city where we saw friends.
What is your favorite memory from your home exchange?
I enjoyed meeting Jacky and his wife. They are a lovely couple who kindly spoke in English, since I do not speak French. Their home was beautiful and by meeting them first, our stay felt more personal.
Did you encounter any unexpected cultural differences during your travels?
I do not speak French, but I found people to be very accommodating.
What tips and tricks would you give to other HomeExchange guests?
It is nice to leave a note and maybe a personal treat when leaving. I am always grateful to my hosts for allowing me to stay in their homes. Be sure to leave the house as you found it, taking time to clean and put the linens where your host asked you to.
How would you describe HomeExchange to your family and friends?
I frequently talk about HomeExchange! I have had very positive experiences, I wouldn't travel any other way now!