How to Travel Smarter and For Less

According to a 2009 survey from Visa and Pacific Asia Travel Association, accommodation represents a third of the budget when travelling for holidays, studies or work.

Over the years cash-strapped travellers have been seeking numerous ways of saving money from sharing rooms in hostel accommodation to now sharing houses with locals. While medium to long term shared accommodation has been common for years especially among students, the concept of sharing someone’s home for only a few days while holidaying is relatively new.

A comfortable, convenient way of saving money
With short term house sharing travellers are able to save money by staying in cheap accommodation which has the comfort and convenience of a home. When compared to backpackers hostels, who wouldn’t prefer to sleep in a private comfortable room rather than having to share a crowded dorm especially if it is the same price?

Besides the low-cost advantage of staying in a family home, it is often the human factor, a friendlier way of travelling and interacting with the local population that matters the most.

While this type of stay can benefit tourists of all ages by giving a more genuine insight of local life and culture than by staying in a motel room, short term shared accommodation attracts also a wide range of the population such as adult students, overnight visitors, people in-between tenancy or people away from home during contract jobs. Anyone in fact who is looking for cheap but comfortable accommodation from a few days to a few weeks.

A flexible, easy way to make money
Local residents who provide short term accommodation have a lot to gain from the freedom and flexibility that this type of arrangement offers. The opportunity to earn extra cash by renting a spare room from time to time is very appealing as it is an easy way to boost one’s income without the constraint of having to share the home on a permanent basis. And with the ever increasing cost of living, rising rates and loss of jobs, earning extra cash to help pay the rent or just to make ends meet may become a necessity for many people.

However like many travellers money is not necessary the main reason home owners rent a room in their house. For locals who do not or can not travel it is also a way to meet people, make new friends and learn about different cultures.

Different types of stay
With the different types of stay that can be provided such as Homestay, House Share, Working Holiday everyone can choose the stay best suited to one’s preference.

Some might wonder what is actually the difference between Homestay and House Share? Well, it consists mostly in the living arrangement.

In a Homestay arrangement, the hosts provide some or all meals to the guests, which are usually shared together. Guests are considered part of the family and they participate more to the family life.

In a House Share arrangement, the hosts and the guests share the living space but the guests buy their own food and cook their own meals. The guests are more independent and have less interaction with the hosts.

Working Holiday is also another type of stay that benefits both the traveller and the home owner. This time no money is involved only help exchange. The guests helps their hosts for a few days in the garden or in the house in exchange for free food and accommodation.

Whichever type of stay is chosen – Homestay, House Share, Working Holiday – it is a win-win situation as much for travellers as it is for locals.

BedRoamz is a global network of homeowners and travellers where local residents have the opportunity to offer short term accommodation to travelling paying guests and volunteer helpers. To list a room or book a room easily and securely come and visit [] and choose your preferred type of stay: Homestay, House share or Working holiday.

Get to know your hosts or your guests before a booking is made through profiles, reviews from other members and by corresponding safely via BedRoamz messages. You can also exchange information and travel tips on travel forums, write travel blogs and share travel photos.