HomeExchange.com, the largest house swapping network (by far!) is raising prices starting February 22. If you are already a member, don’t worry, this doesn’t apply to you. But new folks considering signing up should do so before Feb 22. The prices vary a bit by country but the USA pricing represents the changes well:
- Current price: $150 (with a 2nd year loyalty price of $135)
- New price: $175 (with a 2nd year loyalty price of $150)
Except for luxury vacation home networks, and a few boutique home swap services (i.e. BeHomm), HomeExchange is the most expensive network. You can compare prices and other features of all the home exchange networks on my spreadsheet. Still, $175 for a year of free lodging for your travels isn’t unreasonable to me (though I’m paying the loyalty price so I don’t have to make this decision). I believe HomeExchange is confident that this increase will not impact their recruitment of new members.
In other news, HomeExchange recently released a custom Local’s Guide on the Mapstr app, sharing tips and destinations from members. This is a really nice advance to their old Google Maps shared map. I love the idea of getting recommendations about places to go and thing to do from fellow home swappers. The map is free to members of HomeExchange and costs $1.99 for everyone else.
I’m a long time use of Mapstr to track places I want to visit, and those I enjoyed. It’s a nicely designed tool The HomeExchange map launched with more than 1000 recommendations. But the world is a big place, and in most major cities there are only one or two places pinned, often way outside of the city. The concept is really cool, but it’s not yet ready to replace my old standby Triposo, an app that went under during the pandemic. Members can contribute to the Local’s Guide on Mapstr, adding recommendations through this link.