Couchsurfing for Rookies; 5 Tips for First-Timers

I’m not claiming to be an expert on Couchsurfing. It would be enormously presumptuous of me to think that I can speak with authority on something I’ve done only a couple of times. But although my first couple of Couchsurfing experiences were very positive ones (as I hope all my further ones will be), I know that not everyone is so lucky, and so based on my stories and those of others, I’ve compiled this little list to make your first Couchsurfing experience as great as mine was!

I first used the Couchsurfing website when I was in Germany, and stayed in Munich for a couple of nights before flying home after my first Workaway placement (post on this to come later). I found my host about a week before I was due to arrive in Munich at the end of March, and everything went very smoothly! I then used the site again to find a host in New Delhi towards the end of my travels in India.

In Munich, I stayed with a young couple, and my host was lovely and very accommodating; she came and met me at the bus stop after my late-night train to Munich, which saved me a lot of faffing around and probably getting lost! Not only was she a great host, but she also came with me on my trip to Neuschwanstein Castle with some other international friends living in Munich!

With my lovely host, Sabrina, in Fuessen after our trip!

Without further ado, here are some tips to make sure your first Couchsurfing stay is the best it can be!

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The ones you left behind; friends, family and travel

I haven’t written anything personal for a while; I feel like most of my blog entries do skate on the surface somewhat and you’ll have to forgive that if you can; I’m still new to this and am probably still developing my style of writing. So it’s time for a more introspective, and maybe advisory article?

Missing the people back home has never really been that much of an issue for me whilst travelling. Whilst my travel experience is probably considerably less than many other people, my time at camp in Maine last year and the subsequent road-trip across the USA, and my month so far in Asia being the first long-term travel experiences I’ve taken alone, I’d say I’ve probably done quite a bit more than many other young people my age.

I’m often taken to be older, the usual guess is mid-twenties. On the one hand, YESSSSS. On the other hand, why? Apparently I look a bit older, but I’ve always felt a little bit more mature than many others my age and I’m sure it comes across in my interests and conversation. Eighteen going on nineteen is a normal age for gap-year tourists, but not so much for longer term backpackers or longer term volunteers. So, people are often a little surprised at my age. However, I never feel like being so young disadvantages me.

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