Realizing Your International Travel Dreams — 

Custom, Independent, International Travel from Home At First

 
 
Your journey begins in the immense sky.
Over the vast ocean, you sleep
high above the storm.
Begin Your Dream Journey Here…
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

SIX STEPS TO MAKING YOUR Custom, INDEPENDENT, international Travel DREAMS COME TRUE —

1. DREAM

Custom, Independent, International Travel.

Do you dream of custom, independent, international travel?
Maybe stories you have read or movies you have seen have inspired you.
Or, maybe tracing family roots is your ambition.
Or, maybe music, theater, or sports are your focused goals.
      Whatever your reasons to travel overseas, your travel dreams can come true. This is where the travel experts at Home At First come in.

2. dESIGN

Tell us your travel dreams. We will plan your custom, independent, international travel to make your dream trip a reality.

Tell us your travel dreams. We design a free trip proposal for you, with all the right flights, lodgings, & ground transport you need to turn your international travel dreams into realities, efficiently and economically. Only when you accept your personalized trip design is your deposit payment due. Once your deposit is received, we put in place all the arrangements to make your dream trip come to life.

3. dAYDREAM

Reading & Daydreaming about your custom, independent, international travel destination will prepare you for the real thing.

Read & daydream about your trip! Before your trip begins you receive a comprehensive guidebook keyed for your destinations. Thirty days prior to your departure you receive all necessary trip documents (tickets, vouchers, passes) plus detailed arrival information, including your overseas addresses, contact information for your lodgings and your hosts, and specific meeting plans for arrival day. 

4. dEPART

Departure Day: Your custom, independent, international travel begins in the sky as you fly away from the familiar to a new land of adventure.

Departure Day. Check-in and Security and two hours of  Waiting-to-Board (sorry). Then the big bird soars, and the wise flier snores. Too soon breakfast interrupts rudely, signifying the approaching landing. Terra Incognita appears out the cabin window. A new world appears as if out of your airplane slumber. Dreams begin to transform into first impressions, but not yet hardened enough to be considered realities.

5. dECOMPRESS

Decompressing when you arrive at your destination: stress falls away and magic begins: your custom, independent, international travel dreams are coming true.

Arrival Day. In some prearranged way — train, bus, taxi, rental car — you find your foggy way to your first night’s lodging. Bed’s invitation wrestles with your curiosity to explore, and bed mostly wins, at least for a couple of hours. You wake in a new place where you barely remember arriving. Time seems as fuzzy as your mind is groggy. You are hungry. Your first meal will help reestablish order. Relaxation begins, and Peace happens.

6. dISCOVER

Discover: a first stroll lets you explore your surroundings. Everything is new, including you. Your custom, independent, international travel takes you to the places you have dreamed of.

Your custom, independent, international travel dream begins. A new morning — the first day of your new life. Take a walk. Eat a fresh pastry with a reassuring coffee or a change-up tea. Watch & listen closely. Hear strange language: even English words now sound foreign. Observe all around you. Dare to speak, to order, to shop. Can you find your way home? Home. Your new home. Comfortable. Roomy. You’re Home At First.

FIND YOUR CUSTOM, INDEPENDENT, INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL DREAM DESTINATION HERE:

Home At First Destinations

Our World of Custom, Independent, International Travel

Featuring Quality Hosted Lodgings

Jump ahead to see our Current Travel Bargains.

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required.

LONDONHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to London!

SUPERBLY LOCATED CENTRAL LONDON APARTMENTS:

Tower Bridge North

near historic Tower of London & Tower Hill tube.

• Tower Bridge South

in fashionable riverside Bermondsey.

• London Bridge North

near Monument tube station.

• London Bridge South

near London Bridge station.

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required.

ENGLANDHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to England!

COTTAGES IN FOUR
ENGLISH REGIONS

  •The Cotswolds

Heart of England

Cornwall & Devon

The West Country

The Lake District

Northwest England

The Yorkshire Dales

North Yorkshire

& by SPECIAL REQUEST:

Cambridge   • Oxford
Cheshire & Shropshire
The Midlands

Central England

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required.

SCOTLAND

Home At First does custom, independent, international travel to Scotland!

LODGINGS IN THREE SCOTTISH REGIONS:

The Central Highlands

 Scotland’s Heartland

Edinburgh

Scotland’s Historic Capital

Inverness & North

The Northern Highlands

& by SPECIAL REQUEST:

Glasgow
The Borders
Isle of Skye
Mull & Iona
Outer Hebrides
Orkney & Shetland

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required.

WALESHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to Wales!

COTTAGES IN TWO 
NATIONAL PARK REGIONS OF WALES

Mid-Wales

Brecon Beacons Nat’l. Park

Northwest Wales

Snowdonia Nat’l. Park

& by SPECIAL REQUEST:

Southwest Wales
Pembrokeshire Coast National Park

Ireland & No. Ireland OPEN to visitors without Covid restrictions.

IRELANDHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to Ireland & Northern Ireland!

COTTAGES & APARTMENTS IN FIVE IRISH REGIONS:

 Central Ireland

Tipperary & Clare

Southwest Ireland

Cork & Kerry

Northwest Ireland

Donegal & Sligo

 Northern Ireland 

Antrim & Londonderry

Dublin City Apts.

Dublin

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required..

PARISHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to Paris!

LEFT & RIGHT BANK
 PARIS APARTMENT LOCATIONS:

 Central Paris
 Apartments 

in safe, attractive, desirable neighborhoods near attractions, the Métro, restaurants, and services:

Arrondissements 1-8, 11, & 18.

& by SPECIAL REQUEST:

Provence
• Normandy
• Alsace

OPEN to all visitors. No Covid testing or other restrictions.

ITALYHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to Italy!

ROME, TUSCANY, & 5 SPECIAL REQUEST REGIONS:

Central Rome Apts.

Tuscany: Siena Estate

Tuscany: Hill Country 

& by SPECIAL REQUEST:

Amalfi Coast

Cinque Terre

• Florence

•  Venice 

•  Sicily 

OPEN to all visitors. No Covid testing or other restrictions.

SWITZERLANDHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to Switzerland!

APTS. & CHALETS ACROSS THE SWISS ALPS:

Bernese Oberland Alps:

Mürren & Kandersteg

Italian Switzerland:

Locarno & its neighbors

The Valaisian Alps:

The Matterhorn & Zermatt

& by SPECIAL REQUEST:

• Eastern Switzerland:
Pontresina, the Bernina Alps, & the Upper Engadine
 

OPEN to all visitors. No Covid testing or other restrictions.

 ICELAND Home At First does custom, independent, international travel to Iceland!

CIRCLING ICELAND:
THE RING ROAD TRIP

Boutique Hotels, Inns,
& Apartments around
Iceland’s Ring Road
including Reykjavik,
volcanoes & glaciers.

Independent discovery set itineraries of 3, 7, & 10 day lengths, or custom-made for your budget, interests, and time constraints. 

Iceland is combinable with most European destinations. 

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required.

DENMARK Home At First does custom, independent, international travel to Denmark!

 LODGINGS IN THREE DANISH REGIONS:

 Zealand: Copenhagen & Roskilde

Odense & Funen

 Aarhus, Aalborg, & Jutland

Classic lodging locations in Copenhagen & Roskilde. Special request locations throughout Denmark.

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required.

NORWAYHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to Norway!

OSLO, BERGEN, &
THE FJORDS

Plus Stavanger, Kristiansand, Lillehammer, Ålesund, Trondheim, Lofoten, & Tromsø

Lodgings at 8 classic & 5 special request Norwegian locations including the World Heritage Site fjords.

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required.

SWEDENHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to Sweden!

LODGINGS IN FIVE CLASSIC REGIONS:

Stockholm

Uppsala

Gothenburg

 Lakeland

West Coast

Boutique Hotels, Inns, & Apartments at 5 classic & 4 special request locations across Sweden.

OPEN to vaccinated visitors. No tests or forms required.

NEW ZEALANDHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to New Zealand!

 NORTH & SOUTH ISLANDS — A ROAD TRIP OF DISCOVERY:

Individually planned itineraries using boutique lodgings with outstanding hosting in:

6 North Island regions

6 South Island regions

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required.

BERMUDAHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to Bermuda!

BETWEEN BRITAIN & 
THE CARIBBEAN:

 Bermuda offers much
 more than its famed pink sand beaches. We offer cottages & inns across the island.

OPEN to visitors. No Covid tests or locator form required.

CUSTOM EUROPEHome At First does custom, independent, international travel to much of Europe!

COUNTRIES WE CUSTOM-PLAN DREAM TRIPS TO:

Britain   Ireland

Finland   Iceland

Germany  Holland

Greece  Italy

Portugal Spain

France Switzerland

Denmark Norway Sweden

A Letter from Home…

   What’s Going On?!

          By now you’re probably spinning from the mixed predictions about the economy in general and the travel economy in particular. We certainly are. That’s the bad news. But there is good news, too: if the predictions support inaction, the data encourage action. And the actions can be very positive. Here’s what we mean —
          The scary “R” word — Recession — has been predicted long and strong by so many pundits and insiders that we innocent bystanders can be forgiven for believing that the economy is deeply mired in depths of negative numbers.
          But the data are mixed. The stock market is in positive territory for the last quarter of 2022 and the first month of 2023. Employment is at or near all-time highs, although not in all industries. Right now it’s Big Tech’s turn to downsize its staff. Inflation — another very scary word — seems to be subsiding in most sectors, but not all. Gas has dropped by as much as 25% in most states, returning to pre-Covid levels in many places. But grocery prices are way up and not easing. Egg prices are so high that hen fruit is being smuggled in from Mexico. And, with housing already in short supply, anti-inflation Fed interest rate increases have made buying or renting one’s next home unreasonable to untenable in the current market.
          Dire predictions have been made for the cost of heating homes this winter, but, so far, the unaffordable price increases feared have not materialized here in America. Similar projections of skyrocketing 2023 travel costs have – so far – needed to be revised. There are some notable jumps: Disney’s parks raised ticket prices dramatically, raising the ire of families for whom a trip to Disney World or Land is an assumed right of passage. And the airlines, assuming increased post-Covid “revenge travel” demand and sky-high energy costs for 2023, have pegged their published transatlantic fares with increases we expect to see in the health-care industry or in higher education. The biggest airfare jumps have been applied to the expanded high season (now stretching one week shy of 4 months, May 16 to September 8), reflecting the dates between college graduations and the restart of school after Labor Day. The airlines are not alone. In most countries, hotel and rental car prices, anticipating a tsunami of demand in 2023, have jumped like the airfares. But because the transatlantic airfares you pay are likely the single largest item in any overseas trip you book, we (and you) watch them most carefully.
          In travel, published fares are a kind of futures market, a kind of educated guessing and insider betting, but, like shelf prices at Walmart, published fares are always subject to change. In recent weeks we have begun to see airlines hedge their educated bets by announcing “sale fares” for spring and fall travel, and, this week for the first time this year, even for the high season. This usually happens because seats aren’t selling as quickly as expected in a competitive market when one or more airlines decide drop fares below the levels set by the so-called “flag carrier” of the destination. In France, the flag carrier is Air France. For Britain, think British Air. Lufthansa sets fares to Germany (and to Switzerland through its Swiss International Air Lines). And so on. Sometimes these rebellious sale fares remain one-offs, and soon die on the vine. But often in hotly contested markets, one airline’s sale fare leads to most other carriers matching the drop. And, rarely, a sale fare can initiate a fare war, with the potential to severely damage one or more airline’s profitability and future.
          Here at Home At First we monitor the airfare marketplace as a kind of stock market. We watch for significant fare changes. We scan for value-priced airfares that can save our clients real money. We use these usually short-term airfare sales to create our Current Travel Bargains, and we publicize these on our website and via our Travel Bargain Alerts emails to subscribers. Early in 2023, we are seeing considerable volatility in the airfare markets for certain destinations, especially for England, Wales, Ireland, Italy, and Switzerland. So far there has been little movement for Iceland, France, Portugal, and Scandinavia. But this too, can change, and, when it does, it will be without notice. Scandinavia, in particular, likes to announce very short term sales, even for the high season. Such sales can last only a few days, not enough time for us to get the word out to our customer base and expect a response in time to meet the sale deadline, making these sales a kind of bait-and-switch tactic.
          Nevertheless, if you are thinking of traveling overseas in 2023, contact us whether or not your chosen destination is affected by a Current Travel Bargain. Ask us for a free trip proposal with an “Instant Discount” quote. We’ll research the best current airfares, and if there are sale fares available, we will propose your trip using the lowest fare available.
          You need not let published fares and the predictions of pundits scare you off. 2023 just might be the year you travel overseas for below-budget cost. Importantly, traveling well and saving money start with a phone call or email to Home At First.

— Ron Fahnestock, Editor

Sign up for Travel Bargain Alerts!

  We’ll send you breaking news of special bargains for international travel to your favorite Home At First destinations — like the ones in the right-hand column. Notices come as we discover them — approximately monthly — and typically offer savings of 17-30% off full-packages with flights, lodgings, & land transportation.

Subscribe now

FIND OUR BEST VALUES HERE:

Current Travel Bargains

 4 OUTSTANDING DEALS
FOR TRAVEL DURING 2023!

NEW!

LONDON

$AVE UP TO 30.65% – $970/person!

LATE-SPRING & SUMMER SPECIAL!

4 THINGS TO DO IN LONDON IN 2023:

TRAVEL 12MAY23 – 16SEP23

7-Day Independent Full Package:

• Independent Travel with Transatlantic Flights
• Central London Apartments near Tower Bridge
• London Transport Pass Included

• DAILY Departures — 12MAY–8SEP 2023

SUPER PRICE!

$2,195

PER PERSON DOUBLE OCCUPANCY

BOOK BY FEBRUARY 13, 2023

LONDON SPRING/SUMMER: DETAILS

NEW!

$AVE 25.2% – $641/person!

IRELAND

LATE-SUMMER & AUTUMN 2023 SPECIAL!

25 MUST-DO ACTIVITIES IN IRELAND:

CHOOSE FROM 4 IRISH REGIONS:

• Central Ireland (Co. Clare & Co. Tipperary)
• Dublin  (in the center of Ireland’s capital)
• Northwest Ireland (Co. Donegal & Co. Sligo)
Southwest Ireland (Co. Cork & Co. Kerry)

7-Day Independent Full Package:

Independent Fly/Drive Travel with Transatlantic Flights
+ Cottage/Apartment Lodgings + 1-Week Car Rental or Dublin TransPass

TRAVEL 8SEP – 4NOV 2023

Friday Departures 8SEP23 to 27OCT23

ASTOUNDING VALUE!

$1,899

PER PERSON DOUBLE OCCUPANCY

BOOK BY FEBRUARY 13, 2023

IRELAND SUMMER/FALL DETAILS

— LATE-SUMMER & FALL —

An Ideal Time to Go to

Switzerland

LATE-SUMMER & FALL
IN SWITZERLAND!

TRAVEL 25AUG23 – 27OCT23

7-Day Independent Full Package:

CHOOSE FROM 4 GREAT SWISS LOCATIONS:

KANDERSTEG – Alpine Village w/ super rail service
MÜRREN – Car-free village in spectacular setting
LOCARNO –  Italian-Swiss city with Lake & Alps
ZERMATT – Alpine resort town by the Matterhorn

7 Nights Centrally-Located Apartment Lodgings
Excellent, attentive, English-speaking hosts 
Independent Swiss Travel by train/boat/lift/bus
Scenery, Food-Beer-Wine, Multi-Cultures, Hiking & Biking 
TransPass for the unmatched Swiss Transport Network
Home At First’s Exclusive Swiss Regional Guidebooks

OFFER EXTENDED!

BOOK BY FEBRUARY 13, 2023

Friday Departures 25AUG23 – 20OCT23

$AVE 15.76% – $452/person!

$2,416

PER PERSON DOUBLE OCCUPANCY

SWITZERLAND AUG-OCT: DETAILS

FALL SPECIAL!

$AVE UP TO 30% – $843/person!

ENGLAND

in Autumn when the crowd isn’t there!

AUTUMN TRAVEL 8SEP – 4NOV 2023

CHOOSE FROM 4 DESTINATIONS:

• CORNWALL (SW England)
• COTSWOLDS (Heart of England)
• NORTH YORKSHIRE (NE England)
• THE LAKE DISTRICT (NW England)

7-Day Full-Package includes:

Independent Fly/Drive Travel with Transatlantic Flights
+ Cottage/Apartment Lodgings + 1-Week Car Rental

AUGMENTED OFFER!

BOOK BY FEBRUARY 13, 2023

Depart Fridays 8SEP-27OCT, 2023

AMAZING PRICE!

$1,991

PER PERSON DOUBLE OCCUPANCY

ENGLAND AUTUMN SPECIAL: DETAILS

HOW TO BUILD, PRICE, & BOOK YOUR CUSTOM, INDEPENDENT, INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL —

Contact HOME AT FIRST: (800) 523-5842 (toll-free USA & Canada) • +1 610 543 4348 (worldwide) • info@homeatfirst.com