In our last article, we talked about the concept of RV exchange between individuals, including the different benefits of reciprocal ones. It’s may be possible that you don’t feel quite ready to leave your vehicle with someone else and want to try out a non-reciprocal swap. We tell you more about it !
What is a non-reciprocal RV swap ?
The SwapTheRoad platform connects travel lovers who own RVs. Where Yescapa is the Airbnb of the motorhome, SwapTheRoad is the HomeExchange of it.
The SwapTheRoad community platform offers two main types of exchange, based on sharing and trust between travel enthusiasts.
First, there is the RV reciprocal exchange, which consists of an exchange of a recreational vehicle between two individuals. Concretely, it is based on a give and take principle : you borrow the RV from another individual and he borrows yours in exchange. It can be over the same period (simultaneously) or over a different period (deferred).
The type of exchange that will interest us today is the non-reciprocal RV exchange. This type of RV swap, only offered by SwapTheRoad, is for the eventual situation where two owners do not wish to exchange their vehicle to each other. For example, if the other person has already booked a vacation in another country, or already knows yours very well, they may not have an interest in borrowing your vehicle in exchange. This concept of one-on-one swap can also particularly suits RV owners who want to try out the concept of RV swap but are still a little undecided to lend theirs to other individuals. Indeed, it is quiet understandable when you know the price of a recreational vehicle (most models cost tens of thousands of dollars). Opting for non-reciprocal exchange also means allowing yourself time to discover the concept, at your own pace. At first, and even later if you like this type of swapping, you can therefore make a non-reciprocal exchange and borrow a recreational vehicle without lending your own in return. Vice versa, you can lend your vehicle without borrowing the other individual one. In order to be able to propose such a service, SwapTheRoad has implemented a system of RoadPoints.
What are RoadPoints exactly ?
RoadPoints (or RP) are cumulative points, constituting a digital currency, an exchange currency. It will ensure that you are not limited in your travels and that you do not only have to opt for reciprocal RV exchanges. By offering this kind of swap, SwapTheRoad gives you the opportunity to choose between several possibilities and therefore increase your chances of traveling. So the platform users have the choice between two solutions to validate their trips :
• One RV for one RV
• One RV for RoadPoints
These RoadPoints allow SwapTheRoad to offer swaps that are always based on sharing and not money, even in a non-reciprocal one. This RP transfer is a way of thanking the individual for lending you their vehicle. The platform is truly different from rental or shipping, because in addition to providing you with a unique travel experience, you benefit from it at a lower cost.
It is in the case of non-reciprocal exchange that RoadPoints are really most useful.
How do RoadPoints work for a non-reciprocal
The RP you own will be used to borrow the vehicle of another member of the SwapTheRoad community for a non-reciprocal exchange. You will simply have to verify that you have enough to borrow the desired vehicle according to the valuation made by its owner.
Let’s illustrate this with an example : you are Canadian and want to take a trip to Europe by RV exchange. With your little family you agree to visit Italy for two weeks. You send a message to an Italian member providing his motorhome but he already knows Canada very well and does not wish to borrow your RV in return. Thanks to the non-reciprocal exchange, you can then borrow his RV in exchange for RoadPoints. You will need to transfer to the motorhome owner a number of RP equivalent to his number of RP / day, multiplied by your 15 days of borrowing. If his RP / day is up to 100, you will need to multiply 100 RP by 15 and so transfer 1500 RP to the Italian owner.
The number of RoadPoints is debited from the moment the Lender validates the reservation.
How to get RoadPoints ?
When you register with SwapTheRoad, you can add the recreational vehicle(s) you own and complete your profile. At this point, all the new members are equal the because the platform distributes 600 RoadPoints for completing the profile and 1400 for registering a first vehicle. So you start your SwapTheRoad adventure with 2000 RP. Please note that the maximum number of RP is distributed to those who complete their profile 100% ! Once credited, it’s up to you to choose through the search filters on what type of exchange you want to start with, reciprocal or non-reciprocal, the period of your trip and your ideal destination. 2000 RP is already quiet enough accumulated to enjoy a several days vacation !
When you are registering and adding your recreational vehicle, it is also up to you to define its value for individuals who wish to borrow it. In this case, you must define a number of RP that the individual will have to transfer to you per day of borrowing. Automatically, the value is preset at 100 RP / day, but you can change it at any time. For example, if you have made adjustments to your van since your registration, added new equipments and feel that its value has clearly increased, you are free to price it up. You can also increase its value depending on its geographic location, if you make it available in a large city for example.
Can members earn more RP ?
In addition to get RP every time you lend your RV in a non-reciprocal way, you can earn RoadPoints for free by many ways on SwapTheRoad. You can get :
• 700 RP per additional vehicle added
• 50 RP per year by sharing an experience with the community
• 100 RP by sponsoring a new SwapTheRoad member (the godchild can get 200 RP if they subscribe). After subscribing, each user receives a code that they can easily pass on to their friends.
• 500 RP per year by simply remaining loyal to the platform
It is also possible for SwapTheRoad users to purchase RoadPoints if they wish. The price of 1 RoadPoint is determined at 0.5 €. Be careful, once acquired, they are neither transferable nor refundable.
These different options to obtain RP are a way for the collaborative platform to reward its users, to grow the community every day and thus, give as many people as possible the chance to travel.
In addition to its mission to allow as many RV owners as possible to travel more often and without impacting their budget too much, SwapTheRoad makes a point of ensuring them peace of mind when it comes to vehicle exchanges. In our next article, we’ll give you all the tips on how to deal with a breakdown when traveling by RV as well as the best practices to follow.