Q: We've recently signed up to Home Base Holidays and are now talking to a member in Cornwall about a home exchange hopefully for this summer. I wonder if it is standard practice to leave a gift for the people we'll be exchanging with? We've let our apartment out through AirBnB in the past but this will be our first time home exchanging (we're very excited!) and so want to make sure we leave a good impression. Do you have any recommendations or feedback on what other members do?
- Susan (North London, England)
A: It's great to hear you're discussing a home exchange for this summer - I'm pretty sure we're all in need of a holiday! As home exchanges are private agreements between two sets of members, every home swap is little bit different. We've had feedback from members that have said that they do not expect a gift, all they want is that the member treats their home with care and that the free holiday accommodation is a gift in itself. However, I personally think it is a nice touch to leave a small gift and a thank you note to show your appreciation. If the member you are exchanging with have children, you might decide to leave them small gifts appropriate for their ages or bring the gifts with you to leave for the children when they return home.
Many members create a welcome pack for their guest's arrival in which they include information about their home and location (tourist leaflets, maps, emergency numbers, etc). Along with the welcome pack, you could include a few small treats/delicacies from your area - this would be a lovely way to start a swap!
|Note: when discussing your swap it's good to check any dietary/allergy requirements of your guests ...you wouldn't want to leave wine, salmon, and peanut brittle for a non-drinking vegetarian with a peanut allergy.|
Leave basic provisions: I'd also recommend leaving some basic supplies for your guest's arrival (toilet paper, tea, coffee, milk, bread, cheese, fruit, juice, possibly even a meal ready to re-heat). Discuss this with your exchange partners before heading off on your trip but, if you both agree to do this, it can be a nice relaxing way to start a swap.
- Check out their sea view home swap offer in Ghadira, Malta
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