How to Find a Host When Couch Surfing

Knock Knock

So, you’ve made the decision that you want to join the couch surfing community – to travel, to share your own experiences and find new ones – and all off the back of your own adventurous spirit. But you’ll need a couch for the night and finding a reliable, appropriate host can be confusing, especially when you’re just starting out. So, to begin with, where are all these lovely hosts to be found?


Pleased To Meet You

Without a doubt, the original couch surfing website – – is your first port of call. Boasting more than ten million members in more than 200,000 cities, it really is the best place to go to find your first host. It takes just a couple of moments to register and once you are, you can begin to explore who, what and where is available. You can’t send a message or a request to a potential host until your profile is at least 50% complete, and you earn these percentage increases through connecting to Facebook, adding a photo, verifying your email and writing what’s known as a ‘profile essay,’ – your preferences, ambitions and interests. It also asks you what you can share, an ethos which is very much at the heart of couch surfing; while no money changes hands between host and surfer, life-skills, talents and generosity of spirit all very much do, so don’t be shy in boasting about what you can do well, whether it’s playing the guitar, cutting hair or cooking up a delicious meal from scratch.

When your profile is ready and you’ve decided where you’d like to go, this is when you can start approaching potential hosts, sending out a message which is also known as a ‘Couchrequest.’ recommend that you send out five of these to begin with and above all, make your message personal. There are few things ruder than a generic request, and by reading a potential host’s profile and then tailoring a message to suit, you’ll be showing that you’ve taken the time and consideration to find out about them – not just their couch! Remember, as a surfer, you’ll be fitting into the lives and homes of other people, so try to look for people whose worlds will compliment what you want to do and again, convey this in your Couchrequest.

When a potential host contacts you back, take time to read their message and make sure you’re comfortable with it. Don’t be shy to rely on your instincts if anything seems amiss and always read the reviews of fellow surfers who can vouch for the host. If time permits, it’s best to build up a rapport via message before committing to a booking. When you’ve made the arrangement, it’s also good practice to send a quick message a couple of days before you’re due to arrive – this acts as confirmation of the arrangement and any last minute details which need to be conveyed can be.

When you’re staying with them, remember to be clean, tidy and respectful. While it’s an informal set-up, the tenets of trust and respect are central to a successful couch surf, so keep your own space neat and adhere to any rules that there might be.

Do Come Again

Like all communities, word of mouth matters and as such, if you’ve had a great time with a host, do the decent thing and write a review saying as such. They can also leave you feedback, too, and the more positive it is, the easier couch surfing will become. Alternatively, if you’ve had a negative experience or have any serious concerns about your host, you can flag it up to the team at via a confidential link.

And that’s it – you’re done! You’ve found your couch surfing host and are setting out into a world of informal adventures hosted by fellow like-minded travellers. Happy couch surfing!

How to Plan a Couch Surfing Trip

See The World For Free

If you want to see the world but are on a strict budget, the latest trend is to try couch surfing. What exactly is couch surfing you ask? Well, it’s an online forum, like social media, where like minded people get together and arrange to sleep on a fellow member’s couch for free while traveling. It’s an exciting idea, and allows people to travel the world and see exotic locations, big cities and tourist resorts at a fraction of the cost of a regular vacation. Of course couch surfing isn’t for everyone, but if you’ve decided to give it a go, here are some helpful hints to assist you in planning your couch surfing trip.

see the world for free

Sleep On A Stranger’s Couch

It does sound like a crazy idea, but there are over a million people registered with the website, and countless people choose this style of vacation time and again. There are many benefits as well as the low cost, including having the advantage of knowing some locals who can help you find the best places to visit and give you guided tours, and of course, the social benefits of making new friends. Here are some planning tips to get you started on your adventure.

choose a destination

Choose A Destination

Where would you like to visit? The world really is your oyster as there are registered couch surfers in over 200 countries worldwide.

Write personal profile

Write Your Profile

Create a truthful profile, making sure you include plenty of information about yourself as this will help you when it comes to finding a suitable host. Remember to add photos of yourself so that you can establish visual contact be   fore arriving on your host’s doorstep, they are more likely to trust you if they know what you look like.

Find A Matching Host

Find A Matching Host

Search for a host that is a good fit with you. There are plenty of search criteria that you can use to hone down possibilities until you find the ones that are likely to work well with you. Think about their age, where their home is located, whether they are male or female and any other keywords that you find relevant.

Read Profiles Thoroughly

Once you have narrowed down your selection, read through the host profiles very carefully to make sure that their lifestyle fits in well with yours. Remember, you will be living in close proximity to these people so it is essential you both feel comfortable with the situation.

Request A Hosting

Once you have found a host and location that suits you, send a polite message asking if it would be acceptable for them to let you stay on particular dates. In some areas, you need to send a message well in advance as demand is high, for example in capital cities like London. In others, it would be best to wait until about three weeks before you plan to travel in case your host forgets that you are going to be arriving! Remember to include personal information in your message, telling your potential host something about yourself, pointing out anything you have in common and why they would be a good match for you. Once you have established contact, share phone numbers or email addresses to use to communicate in future.

Have A Wonderful Free Vacation

Once you have arranged your couch surfing host, you simply plan the rest of your vacation as you would for a traditional hotel stay. Book your travel and any activities that you have planned, and enjoy saving money on accommodation costs! Have a great couch surfing trip!