Whether a weekeend getaway or a longer trip abroad, you can save a great deal by not paying for accommodation. And if you're going to be away and leave your empty home behind, why not have someone else stay to keep an eye on it? Home exchange is a great way to swap residences with someone who wants to visit here. Yes, you have to tidy your house, hide private documents and make some room in your closet and drawers. But a little bit of work is worth all the savings. And of course, camping is a great way to save too. You can reserve a spot at BC Parks or find free camping on crown land. And if you don't have the equipment, ask an avid camper to loan you some or you can rent it at places like Mountain Equipment Co-op.
Some other ways to have that vacation feel without the cost are:
* split time between camping and a night or 2 in a motel
* camp near a popular town or resort and you can stay for a fraction of the price but still enjoy all the ammenities.
* take a staycation and enjoy all the natural free beauty BC has to offer
* do an "informal" house swap by asking friends who live elsewhere if they would like to trade homes for a week'
* For the casual traveller couch surfing has become an increasingly popular option. Stay tuned for a future segment on couch surfing.