You want to explore the world but can’t afford hotel stays.
Can you still make your travel dreams happen?
By couch surfing, you can cut the cost of travel and travel more often!
Read this article to learn easy ways to get started.
Table of Contents
What Is Couchsurfing?
Couchsurfing is a way to travel more affordably. If you can find a cheap flight, you can also find cheap accommodation.
In the traditional sense, people might couch surf at a friend’s house. Maybe you go on a vacation but stay at friends’ houses instead of hotels.
Thanks to technology and social media, couch surfing is easier than ever before. Many people couch surf at strangers’ houses when visiting new places.
This sounds a bit far-fetched if you’ve never heard of it before.
Keep reading to learn more because it’s growing in popularity for good reasons!
How Does Couchsurfing Work?
The easiest way to get into couch surfing is to download a trusted app. You can set up your couch surfing profile and look at the profiles of others.
Some people only want to find somewhere to sleep. Others are primarily looking to be hospitable and let people stay in their homes.
Sometimes you will stay somewhere for free. Other hosts will charge a small rate.
Some hosts will let you stay for free in exchange for your skills or services.
Different apps have different features, but most of them will allow you to find someone who is a good fit for you.
Is Couchsurfing Safe?
While it may be risky to go couch surfing, there are ways to ensure that you stay safe.
Some apps verify their couch surfing hosts. These apps may generally be safer.
Just because someone passed a background check, doesn’t mean they’re safe. And apps that don’t require background checks have plenty of safe hosts.
You should always check reviews and comments about the hosts. Some apps may even let you privately message people who left comments.
If someone doesn’t have a lot of reviews, check to see if they are on any other apps. They may have more reviews on another couch surfing app!
Even if a host passes all your safety tests, still remember to use basic travel safety practices.
Pros And Cons Of Couchsurfing
Residing with locals allows for more of a cultural exchange than staying at a hotel. You will learn more about the area and they can learn about your home!
By taking advice from locals, you can explore their city like a travel blogger.
It’s an affordable accommodation option for travelers on a budget.
Since you meet like-minded people, you may also make lifelong friends. This will also increase your network of people when planning future trips.
You may arrive at a home and quickly realize that the host and living arrangements aren’t ideal.
Staying at someone’s home means you can’t come and go at all hours of the night, like in a hotel.
Usually, couch surfing limits the length of your stay. Most hosts wouldn’t be thrilled to have a visitor in their home long-term.
The Best Apps For Couchsurfing
Couchsurfing is the original couch surfing app. It has been around since 2004 and many people still use it.
This app has hosts that live all around the world, so you should be able to find a place to stay no matter where you visit.
Download the Couchsurfing app and create a Couchsurfing profile to get started. Use the search function to find Couchsurfing hosts that are a good match for you!
Alternatives for Couchsurfing
Not sure Couchsurfing is for you?
Here are some alternatives that will allow you to still travel on a shoestring.
HomeStay is very similar to Couchsurfing. Many of these homes will offer a spare bedroom to travelers using the app.
This is a great option for people who would like a little bit of privacy, but don’t mind sharing a bathroom.
It is not as big as Couchsurfing so you may not be able to use it wherever you may travel.
BeWelcome is a website that helps travelers find locals.
This platform emphasizes the idea that locals can guide you in the right direction. By asking your host for recommendations during your visit, you’ll make the most of your visit.
If you are excited to learn more about the local culture, this may be the perfect app for you!
While Airbnb might not always be the most affordable lodging option, it is often low-cost. Many people prefer this app because hosts tend to provide an enjoyable experience.
You may find a wide variety of lodging options through this app. Maybe you’ll find a spare room, empty apartment, or cozy cottage.
A lot of these hosts don’t mind if you stay for several days or even weeks.
HomeAway is similar to Airbnb. They often have more private lodging options.
Since their homes may be more private, this is great for families. You can even use the filters to find exactly what you need.
If you prefer rural, urban, quaint, or basic, you’ll probably find something you like. You can even change the settings to ensure that you rent a pet-friendly home!
This app is exclusively for cyclists. If you are biking cross country and mostly just need to wash off your sweat, this is the app for you.
Cyclists who use this app form a strong community. They are encouraged to share their showers as often as they use other people’s showers.
They also like to spend time together during their stays. A lot of them are active in the forums, as well.
You can use the forums to plan routes for your upcoming bike trip. This platform also has a lot of information to help cyclists find their way around a new area.
Many pet owners use this app to find someone to stay at their homes and take care of their pets. This exchange for accommodation is perfect for thousands of travelers.If your wondering what the cost is of Trusted House Sitters you can see it here.
This is great for pet lovers and allows you to stay in luxurious homes on occasion. But it may not be the best option for someone who wants to explore all day long.
When house sitting for other people, it is important to do the tasks they expect of you. This may cut into your exploration time.
There are many other house-sitting platforms to choose from if this is the route you want to take.
Tripping allows you to search for locations through several couch surfing alternatives.
It’s like hotels.com but shows options besides traditional hotels.
If you want to travel the world, but don’t have the funds, you may want to try out couch surfing.
Staying at places for free or next-to-nothing is a great way to stretch your budget.
After reading this article, you have a great starting point to find the best app to meet your needs!
Your next vacation will be much more affordable and exciting. You will cut the cost by staying at cheaper places.
But you will add to the experience by going where the locals tell you to visit!
I am Britt I have been house sitting and pet sitting for the past 7 years. I have cared for 25 dogs, 35 cats 1 turtle, and 1 rabbit over 80+ houses in 15 countries.
The opportunity to experience different homes, cultures, and communities has been nothing short of extraordinary.
Through house sitting platforms like Aussie House Sitters, and Trusted House Sitters, I’ve connected with homeowners seeking reliable sitters. This unique way of living has not only allowed me to save money on accommodation but also offered a plethora of cultural exchange opportunities.
Being a member of these platforms has not only broadened my horizons but also opened doors to short and long-term house-sitting jobs. I’ve found joy in providing excellent pet care and ensuring the home is well maintained.
I get many questions about how to get start as a house sitters, so if you have any questions please reach out! I want everyone to enjoy this incredible lifestyle as well!
You can read more about about Jay and me here!
Or connect with me on Facebook or in our house sitting community on Facebook