I surfed over 5oo Couches! Couchsurfing is an awesome community and a great way to get introduced to the dynamic and diverse cultures of the world. It is free to join and participate in this awesome community, the only thing you have to do is give your time and willingness to share your travel experiences, passion and dreams.
I used it when I wanted to see the world, but from a locals perspective. I have surfed in boats, cars, apartments, tents, caves and camper vans. I have surfed in Africa, Asia, South America, Europe and North America in over 500 homes. It was difficult at first to get a couch with no references, but once I passed a 100 references, people started to contact me and offer me a couch.
I can remember a time when I was hitchhiking from Croatia to Montenegro and a car stopped in the middle of the street, because they said they saw my profile and awesome references from over 200 people on Couchsurfing. Not only did they give me a ride, but we spent the day cliff-diving and having a picnic on the coast of Croatia. In the the South of Italy, I got on a bus and told the girl sitting next to me that I needed to find a place to sleep. She said, “I am a Couchsurfer, you can have my downtown 2 bedroom condo all to yourself for 2 weeks if you want?” I had access to a washing machine and air-conditioning, when the temperature was at is hottest. In Cyprus, I meet my Couchsurfing host for what I thought would be a few days in the Greek Capital of Cyprus, but instead she planned a whole road trip. We spent the next few days driving the whole island. What is there not to love about Couchsuring or to loose by trying? Nothing!
So, here are 5 quick tips to start your Couchsurfing Journey with success:
- Complete your profile fully with several photos
- Go to as many events in your local area as possible and ask every person you meet to write you a reference that vouches for your characters
- Share what ever travel experiences you have had on your profile, calling it my “My best travel experience(s) yet or “My favorite places in the world.”
- Share a list of all the countries you dream to visit and say why you want to visit them. I would start with my top ten and update that list as you go along.
- Put on your status and profile that travelers can contact you for travel tips, if they want you to show them the city or grab a coffee or drink.
You can go a step further, if you are able to host people in your home before you start your travels. This let’s experienced hosts and couchsurfers know that you are not just in the community to take or to have a free night in their home, but you are willing to share your home and how others the same local experience when they visit your area.