WHAT IS COUCHSURFING? Couchsurfing is a way of travel and sleeping in host´s houses for free. The first step is registration on website. Not just that you can get a host, you can also host people from around the world. You can simply get to know different people or you can just show them your home place.
I started to do couchsurfing by myself five years ago when I went to Norway with my friend Tanja. Because Scandinavian countries are more expensive than ours, it was too much for us, students. We traveled to Oslo, Bergen and to Stavanger. We got a host in all three cities. But you never know what you get. It can be the best experience or a bad one. Here we experience cold room and sleeping on the floor. We had five layers of clothes on us and we still did not get enough sleep.
Next trips I took and I “couched” were in London, Sweden, New York, California, Hawaii. I recommend couchsurfing especially in the United States. You get really easy a host in my opinion. For me it is important to have a bed or couch, bathroom, and I do not expect too much. For people who are not modest, easy going and are full of negativism, this is not the right option.
I collect 10 reasons WHY to do couchsurfing. It is a good option for people who travel on a low budget, are adventurous, open minded and for people who are ready to meet new people.
- The site is suitable for ALL! You create a profile and you post your photos. Here race, sex, age are not important.
- You have a choice! You talk to a host about the date and time of arrival. You can always see references – what others wrote about hosts and their homes. Based on this and their profiles you decide.
- You meet new people – friends. Some people are so nice that they pick you up from airport or they wait for you on bus or train station. They take you or show you good and cheap restaurants around. On trips you take, you see how people live, think, … And this is the point of travel as well.
4. You know their culture. What people eat at home, what and where they work, how they dress, their attitude to certain things, how they take time for themselves … You can ask anything Coucher, because if you stay in the hotel, you would never have known this information.
5. You begin to appreciate the generosity and openness of the people. Yes, there is still some generosity in the world. Not all people are imprisoned. Among the European countries, I would point out the Scandinavian countries, while the Americans are among the more enclosed people. For example, New York: We did not find a bus and we were asking people on the road where this bus is. Nobody answers us, as if we do not exist at all!!?! However, there are certain exceptions. People help you if you have a headache, they offer you pills, cook something for you. In exchange, you can cook some kind of dish from your country.
6. You see the places, a landscape that is not in a travel guide. Your host can take you around, show you hidden spots where you will probably not go. Couchsurfer´s home can show you amazing views (I was in Hoboken, where is amazing view of Manhattan, my couchsurfer took us on the trip “Road to Hana” in Hawaii for all day, …).
7. It’s free. If you’re not fancy and you are traveler on low budget, that’s it!
8. It’s safe. Usually couchers are open people who are happy to accept you. They are people like you and they have probably tries this as well. It is not just to accept you in their home. It’s socializing! … There can be also exceptions with bad experiences, but my experiences are really good! 🙂
9. The best news is that you can go anywhere; couchers are all over the world! So put a map in your hand and go where your heart is calling you 😉
10. You get out of “comfort zone”!
You do not have to be rich to travel WELL !
Kiss, Travelbirdy Masa!