Looking to travel? About to book at hotel room? STOP. Are you aware of couch surfing?
I’ve been a couch surfer since May. My roommate and I hosted people from all over the world! Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Brazil, California and Oregon. And they were all lovely.
How it works: You create a profile on couchsurfing.com, giving details about you, your views on life, interests, and much much more. If you’re looking for couch, you just search the area you’re going to and you get a list of surfers. You read the profiles, look at references left by other surfers and email them asking if you can stay there.
It’s a great way to travel on a budget, get great local advise, and meet some really great people. There’s also a lot more you can do with the couch surfing network. There are regular get-togethers of couch surfers in your area, common interest groups, you can search for travel companions and just meet great people.
There’s definitely a degree of trust required. There are processes on the site to verify people are who they say they are and you can see what others have said about them. Give it a try! It’s been very rewarding experience for me as a host and I’m about to get my first experiense as a surfer when I travel to China. I’ll let you know how it goes!