Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Couch surfing: a guide

Visiting other cities, whether for work or play can be somewhat daunting. You can feel like a complete outsider when you have to leave the local parts of a city in order to sleep in an impersonal hotel. There is a way of undermining this, however, which is called couch surfing, and it’s where strangers meet online and arrange for each other to sleep on their respective couches, or stay in their space rooms. What follows is a brief look at what couch surfing is, and why anyone would want to do it.

The idea is that, people who want a cheaper or more homely accommodation while travelling join a couch surfing online community. That way they can arrange to stay on someone’s couch, or their spare room, in whichever place they want to visit. But they can’t just do this without offering something in return. The deal is, the person whose couch you stay on, is free to come and stay on your couch, too. But why would anyone want to do this?

The benefits are plenty. First of all, it is cheaper. The only thing you offer in return is your own hospitality, meaning you don’t spend a cent on accommodation while you are staying at your couch surfing partner’s house. Also, you have access to local resources, such as internet connection and telephones, which I’m sure your host will not mind you using. This is a much more homely way to stay in a foreign place.

Those people whose couch you are staying on are likely to know a lot more about the local area than a guide book or a hotel assistant. For a start, there is no vested interest in you going anywhere, or buying anything, so you’ll get an honest and reliable opinion about where to go and what to do. They can help you have a good time, without getting ripped off.

The benefit of making friends in other cities is another benefit. If you and your host really get on, then you may end up with a friend in a nice place that you can come and visit on future occasions. Couch surfing is a sociable, cheap and fun way! of doin g accommodation.

For cheap holidays to Ibiza, look no further.

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