So there’s this awesome app/website called Couchsurfing. Andrew told me about it years ago; I just never gave it much thought. Until now.
Couchsurfing is unique in that you can sign up and be a host or a surfer and it’s free to do both! Hosts welcome people in to their homes for free and surfers enjoy a free place to stay and hopefully nice company.
I am from the South, so I was raised with the “make yourself at home” hospitality towards others. I just never believed others would be the same way. When I tell someone they’re always welcome, I always mean it. People value perceived value (and I’m one of them.) If something is free you imagine something is wrong with it, or something just isn’t right. No one invites strangers to stay with them for free! We are doing this trip as frugal as possible. That means no luxury hotel stays or fancy dinners, so I signed up for Couchsurfing!
After I signed up…
When I signed up I put in our trip details and fell asleep. I woke up to offers from nice people all over the world! Most of them, honestly, were offers from Cairo, Egypt. After a lot of hesitation and messaging back and forth we decided to stay with a kind person who has great references and reviews. I’m so nervous. It may wind up being a terrible idea, but I’m praying it goes well. Originally I wanted to book a tour that included housing, transportation, and tours to all the places we’re interested in going.
The more time I spent on Couchsurfing, the more I started to feel comfortable with the idea. I talked myself in to it by reminding myself we hosted AirBnb guests for a while and overall it was pretty easy and fun. I kept thinking that this whole trip feels out of my comfort zone, so why not jump in to the deep end on our first adventure around the world? Let’s see how far we can rely on the kindness of strangers in other countries and other cities.