When Traveling on the Cheap, Check in with the Couchsurfing App
For backpackers traveling on a budget, hostels are always an easy solution, especially when proper planning takes a backseat to spontaneity. But if you do have your sights set on a destination, don't forget about Couchsurfing, the poor man's AirBnb. For those unfamiliar, it's a system where you arrange, typically for free, to stay on someone's couch.
Couchsurfing recently releases its newest app, which allows you to search for places to stay on the go. Some hosts simply offer a place to crash, and others note that they're willing to go grab dinner or drinks. There's a bit of work to do upfront, though, in that you have to create a reasonable profile on the site and reach out to hosts in advance. Basically, between your profile and correspondence, you have to convince the host that you're not a total psycho.
All kidding aside, it's hard not to love the concept of Couchsurfing. Staying in a hotel is comfortable, but often isolating. Staying in a hostel allows you to make friends, but they're usually from out of town. Couchsurfing truly connects in-coming travelers with locals, and even though it might not offer the most appealing sleeping situations, the person-to-person connection cannot be overlooked.
Next time you are looking for a new experience, we recommend giving it a try. You can download the app for free on the iPhone and Android.