With the costs of finding temporary or permanent places to stay rising by the year, many people have turned to alternative ways to find places to stay.
People have always taken on multiple roommates or stayed with family when traveling to one place from another place. Nowadays, some people are taking up residence with complete strangers, particularly when they travel to another country.
Couch surfing is the term used to describe the aforementioned phenomenon. It merely describes the practice of staying with different hosts during traveling, which helps the traveler circumvent the costs of renting a place to stay.
In recent times, people have used couch surfing to have a place to stay without having a permanent place of residence, something commonly seen in young people who are on their own after college. Despite that, couch surfing is mostly associated with traveling, as past travelers initially started this ‘trend’ of taking up temporary residence while on the road.
Behind couch surfing and its benefits
Couch surfing works as an exchange between the traveler and their host. The host is the person who offers the place where the traveler may stay for the night or a few days. Hosts are usually people who have already experienced couch surfing in the past; people who haven’t experienced couch surfing as less likely to offer up their homes as a host.
Couch surfing is about more than just having a free place to stay when on a trip. Couch surfing for travelers can provide travelers more opportunities to experience the location they want to visit. Besides that, it saves them a lot of money. Couch surfing can also:
- Give travelers a chance to travel with the guidance of their host. Great hosts will actually help travelers find the ‘best of the best’ in their city or town, something that’s more than what they could have found on their own.
- Give travelers to opportunities to save money while staying in their host city or town. Without the guidance of a host, a traveler will become lost when attempting to figure out how to get the most out of their money. Besides being a great guide, the best hosts can give travelers tips about how to get the most out of their travel funds.
- Give travelers access to necessities like a kitchen and bathroom. Many hosts will provide access to their kitchen and/or bathrooms to their traveler guests. This pretty much helps travelers eliminate the cost of having to buy pre-prepared foods when on vacation.
Although couch surfing was somewhat spontaneous in the past, modern couch surfing for travelers involves the host and the traveler arranging their accommodations via the web or by phone. The web, in particular, is the most common place to arrange such accommodations, since there are now many websites that allow both parties to communicate with one another.
Couch surfing pretty much helps travelers save money on travel costs, especially if they’re traveling to expensive countries in Asia or Europe. Instead of having to book accommodations and plane tickets for their trip, they only have to worry about their flight and save their additional expenses for the rest of their trip.
Hosts may also be residents of the country that travelers might visit. This gives them the opportunity to learn more from the host themselves about the local culture in their city or town—and even teach their hosts a little about themselves.