West Briton article – Thurs 6 Nov 2003

The following article previewing James Taris’s visit to Falmouth was published in the West Briton on Thursday, November 6th…

Aussie who has no need for any cash

By Helen Dale

FALMOUTH Local Exchange Trading System (LETS) is fast approaching its 10th birthday and will be given a boost when Australian James Taris, who has used the LETS form of cashless trading to travel the world, gives a talk to local members next Tuesday.

James is a self-confessed “LETSaholic” and in 2002 he travelled to eight countries, UK, Spain, France, Germany, Holland, Norway, South Africa and Japan, where he educated people on the benefits of trading locally.

This spring James embarked on his World LETS tour, which will take him to 18 countries on six continents over 400 days – ending on July 3, 2004.

LETS are community groups where members can exchange their goods and services
with others without the need for handing over cash.

Armed with only a plane ticket, James has managed his country-hopping as everything else – accommodation, meals etc – are provided by LETS members in exchange for his services.

James is also the founder of www.LETS-Linkup.com, which is an international LETS directory with links to more than 1,500 LETS groups from 39 countries around the world.

Speaking of his experiences with LETS, James said: “Once I understood and accepted the principle of give and take with my fellow LETS group members, I quickly noticed a sharp rise in the quality of my lifestyle.”

“Having a limited income meant that I could only afford to pay for the essentials in life. Everything else became a luxury which I either did without or chose to do myself.”

“That all changed with LETS because I found that I could at last enjoy some of these luxuries by offering a range of goods and services through my LETS group. Very soon I was mowing lawns, removing rubbish and painting rooms.”

“Later I was designing business cards, brochures and newsletters. In return I received massages, piano tuition and restaurant meals, computer support, computer software and web design services.”

Anyone wanting to learn more about LETS can hear what James has to say when he speaks at the WI hall in Webber Street on Tuesday evening at 7.30pm. Further details about Falmouth LETS can be obtained by contacting Rob Follett on 01326 374397 or Lorely Lloyd on 01326 317587.

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