Please enjoy this Guest Post from Debbie Wosskow, Love Home Swap CEO and founder. Love Home Swap www.lovehomeswap.com, established in October 2011, boasts 4000 members with stylish holiday homes in 80 countries.
Home Swap Makes Business Travel Feel Like Leisure Travel
Before having children I had loved staying in boutique hotels. But hotels simply aren’t practical when travelling with kids—the rooms are often too small and the cost of staying in a hotel just gets more and more expensive every year. As a mum who works and travels a lot, I recognized that home swapping was the perfect solution for me.
Love Home Swap is a different sort of home swapping site. The look and feel of the site is fresh and it’s the most social home swapping site out there, whilst the homes are as inspiring as the destinations.
As a result of setting up www.lovehomeswap.com, we have attracted lots of people to try home swapping for the first time—at the last count 84% of members were new to home swapping! That’s really exciting, and proves that home swapping is a trend that’s growing.
Now a seasoned home swapper I tend to swap 3 times a year. I do travel for business a lot and swapping is a great way to keep travel expenses down! Just before Christmas I swapped to Sydney, where I stayed in a fantastic apartment that was filled with quirky modern art, a fantastic kitchen and Lynne, my swap partner, even leant me her gym membership!
When I swap for business I am specific about my dates and it’s more like booking a hotel. But there is another way to swap, one that taps into the serendipity factor. What I have loved most about home swapping is the opportunity to try new places that I wouldn’t have thought about. It’s really fun to receive requests inviting you to stay in another home on the other side of the world.
The last time I swapped our family home was for a trip to Morocco. Previously I hadn’t considered going to Morocco with my 2 children, Noah who’s 5 and Grace is just 18 months—it just didn’t seem practical. But when I picked up the message from Lisa, and discovered how amazing her home was it was hard to resist. I have probably never booked a holiday so quickly! Lisa was able to share her top tips of how to travel with children in Marrakech—where to eat and what to see. And it was special to have a real home to go back to at the end of the day, where we could relax and just chill out.
Running a business whilst having a young family is a big job, and vacation time is precious. When I stay in someone else’s home my vacation starts the minute I walk through the front door. It’s easy to sink into the comforts of another person’s home and the children always enjoy discovering new toys in the bedrooms.
It’s a reality of running a business that I need to keep in touch with the team whilst I am away, but it’s easy to do with my iPad and Wi-Fi connection! I am an early riser, even on vacation. I will stick to the routine of getting up at about 5:30 am so that everything does get done—I can keep in touch with office in London and enjoy the time with my family. Oddly, it’s when I fly that I really have time to switch off from the day-to-day stuff and think about bigger projects—it’s actually brilliant and something I look forward to!
Do you want to try a home swap? Feel free to leave a comment or ask Debbie a question.