Thinking of travel but worried about the exchange rate?

 Would you be interested if there were no accommodation costs and most meals covered?  Yes! Then why not consider this Rotary Friendship Exchange

We invite you to promote the proposed Rotary Friendship Exchange (RFE) to Vancouver and Seattle in June 2015 to members of your club. This is a great opportunity to travel to a very pretty part of the world and enjoy the fellowship of warm Rotarians in North America. You will also have a chance to reciprocate during our summer in 2015 and continue the friendship.

We need expressions of interest URGENTLY in order to make the arrangements with District 5020.

Please contact Shankar Sankaran (North Ryde, 0406 137 325, or Graeme Davies (Kincumber, 0416 275 363, for more information and to register your interest.


About RFE This exchange program gives Rotarians and their families the opportunity to experience other cultures first hand by participating in reciprocal visits with Rotarians from other countries. You would be responsible for travel costs and personal spending whilst your hosts are expected to provide housing, meals, and sight-seeing opportunities – the same courtesies that would be extended to a visiting friend.

The approximate cost of a return airfare to Seattle via Vancouver is A$ 1,850 but we have to book early to secure this rate.


Insights from Shankar talking about Seattle and Vancouver

Both Seattle and Vancouver are great places to visit and there is much to see. The Rotarians are very hospitable as well.

Please check out the following sites:

I visited Seattle and Vancouver two years ago and was looked after by PP Steve Garfein and Cindy Garfein of Polusbo Rotary Club ( and we took a buggy ride through town driven by a horse and spent considerable time in the Pike Market which is a must see. I also saw the famous Space Needle which was built in 1962 and the new freeway. Seattle is the home town of Boeing and Microsoft and you can visit the flight museum. In Vancouver I saw the art gallery, the sites where the Olympics were held, walked around Stanley Park and saw one of the oldest Chinatowns in the West. As I had limited time I went on the hop on hop off tour. I went to beautiful Victoria in British Columbia (as I had some work there) and travelled by a speed boat to Seattle and took a train back to Vancouver. The view of the snow capped mountains from both Vancouver and Victoria is breathtaking.   Don’t miss it!

Here is some more more information about what will happen in Vancouver and Seattle during the exchange that would be of value.

Hi Graeme,

I want to suggest that your group start the RFE on Monday June1.  If your group arrives in Vancouver on May 31 or earlier, you will travel by BC Ferry to Vancouver Island on June 1 and be met in Nanaimo by your first hosts.  Your group will stay with six different Rotary Clubs for three days each.  Three will be on Vancouver island and three in Washington State.We will transport your group from hosts to host in Canada and the USA.  For travel from Canada to the USA we will get you to the MV Coho ferry that travels from Victoria BC to Port Angeles Washington, where you will be met by your first American hosts.  At the end of the RFE, on June 19, we will transport the group to Seattle WA from where you may go any place you choose.

The night before the official start of the RFE (May 31) I suggest you all meet at a hotel near the airport.  I can give you suggestions of reasonable rate hotels that offer airport shuttle.  I can also give you information on a reasonable shuttle to the BC Ferry terminal with service to Duke Point (Nanaimo).

While you are in District 5020 you will most likely get to four to six Rotary meetings.  Our meetings are informal.  Generally you will not need jacket and tie.  However, if any club has a different custom you will be advised before you leave home.

Please get back to me if this is OK with you.

We will give you the Royal Tour of our part of the world

Rotary regards,  Jeff

Shankar Sankaran (North Ryde, 0406 137 325,

Graeme Davies (Kincumber, 0416 275 363,