Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Mobility is very, very important when on a home exchange venture. These scenes above could not have been captured unless we had been able to drive around in our own vehicle. In Ireland this is especially problematic because rental companies do not rent to individuals over the age of 65. In most cases too, rental with an automatic transmission is prohibitively high. When traveling on the continent in Europe, Renault and Peugeot offer an excellent alternative: "Euro Drive". If you plan to stay more than 17 days, you can purchase a vehicle from these companies and sell these vehicles back to them when you leave. You get a new car model of your choice, delivered at the airport, for a rate which does not exceed the usual rental per diem rate and return it upon your departure. The companies then sell these vehicles to a waiting line of customers who are getting an almost-new vehicle at a substantially reduced cost. But, you the traveler, benefits as well: the usual age-limitation does not apply, as long as you have a valid driver's license from your home country and you have had the luxury of driving a brand new car of your choice. When purchasing the vehicle the cost is tabulated on a lease-basis so that you don't actually have to pay the actual purchase price of the vehicle. It is mere paper work.
In the case of a home exchange, the situation is even easier: you negotiate a car exchange as part of the home exchange. It is important in this case to notify your insurance company and inform them of the arrangement. We did this recently with a couple from Turkey who used our car in Canada and we theirs in Turkey, without a single hitch or problem.
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Seeing your own country the affordable way
The two photos above span the width of our country, Canada from Peggy's Cove in Nova Scotia to Vancouver in British Columbia. When we think of affordable travel, we tend to think of going to a foreign country. However, there are many members of the Affordable Travel Club and Home Exchange who offer hospitality or an exchange to individuals and families within their own country. We have traveled extensively in Europe and Asia. Some of our most rewarding experiences however have been when exploring our own country.