December 03, 2010

I Love Couchsurfing

Our Couchsurfing Hosts

Mathias and Nia Lindstrom in Jonkoping, Sweden
Gerard and Karin Muguet in Montignac, France
Jean-Marc and Juliette Lagniel in Boulazac, France
Casey and Asier Ruiz in Bilbao, Spain
Rodrigo Lobo in Burgos, Spain
Martin in Pontevedra, Spain
Rety and Bruce Fuller in Porto, Portugal
Miguel in Vilamoura, Portugal
Elena Munoz in Jerez, Spain
Jean Pierre and Pat in Barcelona, Spain
Catherine and Etienne Daure in Beziers
Sylvie and Christian Loeillet in Aix-en-Provence, France
Philip in Venelles, France

Let me begin by saying THANK YOU to all of our hosts in Europe. And I convey a special THANKS to our couchsurfing hosts, who knew nothing of us and yet they kindly made space for us in their homes and lives. You can see a list of them on the right side of this page with links to their couchsurfing profiles. I encourage you to look at the profiles of these wonderful people.
While your are at looking at these profiles, take a look at our profile too.
Just click HERE to view our profile.

And I want to thank my friends and family who let us stay with them: my cousins Birgitte, Per-Erik and Anders Amnèus; my friends, Heike and Björn Günther, Pinu and Nilu Swami, Guille and Javier Burgos, Kurt and Ulla Simonsen, Niels and Bet Simonsen.

I LOVE and here is why.

Couchsurfing brings you much closer to the culture and people when you are traveling. When we stay with someone and their family, we get a special insight into who the people of a region or country are. We learn about their daily lives, from the food and wine they consume to what they think of their government and the region they live in. We learn about their families and often their histories. Often we find so much in common that we depart as friends.

Cousurfing hosts are a fount of information. They can tell you were the most interesting sites are, where to find fun places to spend a day or an evening, where to find good places to eat, and where there might be a good cultural event to see. Sometimes they bring you to a party. If you decide to settle in a town, they know where to look for an apartment. Information is gold when you are traveling and they have all the information that you could ever want - or know where to get it.

Couch surfing can make travel possible for those without lots of money. A place to sleep is often the most expensive part of travel. Of course, couchsurfing can reduce travel expenses greatly. For example, we have just spent three months in Europe and we have spent just $1000 for accommodations, where the average cost for a room is well over $60 per night or $1800 per month. This opens the door for many more people to see the world. The rich experiences of travel can be shared with a much wider circle of people.

These positive experiences are not just limited to the traveler, or - as we call ourselves, surfers. We have met many a couchsurfing host that never surfed themselves. We asked about what motivated them to host. The answers were clear: visiting surfers provided them a chance to get to know folks from the world over and very often they provided an opportunity to practice their English.

I encourage all my friends and readers to consider joining the couchsurfing collective. It is easy and it is free.
You can sign up for couchsuring by clicking HERE.
If you cannot bring yourself to join, please, tell your friends, who might like to join, about couchsurfing.

Posted by bill at December 3, 2010 09:19 AM

I love it too!

Posted by: Mariana at December 3, 2010 10:18 AM

Thanks for sharing all of your insights about couchsurfing. I'm heartened to know there are so many folks out there willing to provide a real cultural experience for the traveler.

Posted by: Mickie Turk at December 3, 2010 08:50 PM