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Old 04-22-2014, 02:39 PM
 
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anybody ever do it? i like travelling to new places, but dont want to spend the money for lodging. plus it would be more fun to meet some new people and do things. i want to break out of my comfort zone. i know there are lots of creeps out there, but many consider me to be a creep too, so it should be great!
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Old 04-22-2014, 03:48 PM
 
Location: Saint Paul, MN
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I am a HUGE fan of couchsurfing! For me, it’s not about the money. Even if I was incredibly rich and could afford the most luxurious resorts in the world, I would still choose couchsurfing hands down! Staying with a local gives you a much more meaningful look into the local way of life than staying at a hotel ever could.

I have done CS all over the world, and my experiences have ranged from what I would describe as “meh-plus” to amazing. I have never had a bad experience.

Some practical advice: when you are just starting out, look for people who are verified/vouched for. Read the references, and until you get more comfortable only consider people with numerous positive references across several months at minimum.

The free aspect is admittedly awesome for those of us who prefer to travel on a budget, but don’t approach the experience like it is just a free hotel room (although sometimes it does work out more or less that way). Think about what you have to offer that would enrich your host’s life in some small way—it can be something as simple as a story of your experiences or something as complicated as taking them skydiving with you or teaching them how to home brew beer.

If you are still a bit nervous, go to a few local meetings before you jump into the deep end. CS is a very active community, so there are certain to be various meetups and gatherings going on in your area. Hearing stories and advice firsthand will no doubt inspire you to go for it!
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Old 04-23-2014, 06:32 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia
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I've had several couchsurfers at my house and met some in Puerto Rico-never had a problem and it can be a pretty cool experience.
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Old 06-17-2014, 09:43 AM
 
Location: Murfreesboro, TN
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I'm going to try couchsurfing on my New England trip this August. I'll be sure to check back with a review of my experiences!
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Old 06-17-2014, 09:54 AM
 
Location: Viña del Mar, Chile
16,411 posts, read 26,235,031 times
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I'd absolutely never do it because I hate sharing any type of rooms. Sounds like complete hell to me.

I know people that have done it and they haven't had any issues. I'm a guy, I'd do it without worries. I don't think it's something a female traveler should do alone though.
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Old 06-17-2014, 10:29 AM
 
26,590 posts, read 54,595,142 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burgler09 View Post
I'd absolutely never do it because I hate sharing any type of rooms. Sounds like complete hell to me.

I know people that have done it and they haven't had any issues. I'm a guy, I'd do it without worries. I don't think it's something a female traveler should do alone though.
A couldn't agree more. I want my privacy, I don't want to share a bathroom, I want to come and go as I please, and I don't want to feel obligated to anyone. Additionally there is the safety issue.

We regularly rent flats and homes through reputable agencies, but these are private rentals, not shared space.
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Old 06-17-2014, 11:31 AM
 
Location: Viña del Mar, Chile
16,411 posts, read 26,235,031 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annerk View Post
We regularly rent flats and homes through reputable agencies, but these are private rentals, not shared space.
I do the same thing when I travel. I get better prices by renting out an apartment than I do by going to a hotel. A hostel might be cheaper, but then we run into that sharing a space problem.. and then add to the type of people in hostels.. just not my type of crowd.

To be 100% honest, I get a little annoyed by the couchsurfing attitude. The whole "cultural exchange, you teach me about your culture I'll teach you about mine". Blah, it's just annoying to me. It's a free room, quit making it to be more than what it is.
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Old 06-17-2014, 11:53 AM
 
26,590 posts, read 54,595,142 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burgler09 View Post
I do the same thing when I travel. I get better prices by renting out an apartment than I do by going to a hotel. A hostel might be cheaper, but then we run into that sharing a space problem.. and then add to the type of people in hostels.. just not my type of crowd.

To be 100% honest, I get a little annoyed by the couchsurfing attitude. The whole "cultural exchange, you teach me about your culture I'll teach you about mine". Blah, it's just annoying to me. It's a free room, quit making it to be more than what it is.
If I only need a room for a night or three, it's not worth going through the hassle to find a suitable flat when I can pull up the web sites for Hilton, Marriott, IHG, etc. and have a room booked in five minutes or less without having to wait for someone to get back to me to see if the flat is available, get the price, find out the exact location, etc. The cut off is five or so days, depending on where we are traveling to.

Agreed on the cultural exchange thing. If I want to learn that much about someone's culture, I'll get a foreign exchange student for six months. At least they are screened and there is an agency involved to screen both parties.
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Old 06-21-2014, 09:29 PM
 
3,308 posts, read 2,765,053 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StAcKhOuSe View Post
anybody ever do it? i like travelling to new places, but dont want to spend the money for lodging. plus it would be more fun to meet some new people and do things. i want to break out of my comfort zone. i know there are lots of creeps out there, but many consider me to be a creep too, so it should be great!
My sister has hosted couch surfers, she really likes it. She likes meeting people from different countries and creating connections.

She has made friends from all over the world. We are in Southern California but also have lived in Tijuana, so she also takes them down there and they have loved this. They get to see a normal city hosted by a local vs what uninformed people tell them about the city.

I would do it but my husband isn't as open minded as I am about this.
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Old 06-21-2014, 11:03 PM
 
Location: North Dakota
7,738 posts, read 9,030,452 times
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I've never heard of this site. Interesting way to travel.
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