Couchsurfing is a community that a lot of people in the world are not aware of. This community basically connects travellers across the world. You can register with Couchsurfing and find a host that’s willing to accommodate you in their home when you travel to their city or become a guest for someone who is travelling to your city. This is a great concept for people who love to meet new people, who wish to know about the different kinds of culture that prevails and also those who travel a lot and cannot afford to stay in a hotel or a hostel. It is very important to be a good guest or a good host. Wondering how can you be one? We will tell you how; these tips sure will sound very little right now, but these are the tips that will do wonders for you to be a good host or a good guest.
Tips to be a Good Couchsurfing Guest
Yes, It is important to be a good guest, here’s how
When you register with Couchsurfing, you need to make sure that your profile is honest. You do not want your host to have an image about you that is not you. So the least you can do is build a profile that is totally you and when your host selects you, they shouldn’t be surprised after meeting you. Also, when you send a request to the host, be completely honest about the reason you liked their profile as a host and why you want to actually live with them.
Keep your Host Informed
The house of your host is not a hotel that you can check-in whenever you wish to. Keep your host informed about your arrival because they have a life outside being your host. You can keep them informed over an email or drop a text message or give them a phone call. This way they can plan their day accordingly and you will also be taken as a polite, well-mannered person. This doesn’t get over here. Once you reach their place, keep them well-informed about your plans during the stay. Also, try sticking to their schedule if they are hosts who like to have their meals together. During rare instances, it happens that the host doesn’t have an extra key to spare, in that case, co-ordinate with them so that you guys can leave and come back together.
Duration of your Stay
Make sure the duration of your stay is not too long, a maximum of three days sounds good. There can be instances where you might not be comfortable with the host or the vice versa and in this case if you stay for longer, you will be in an awkward situation. So it is best that the duration of the stay is shorter. This way you can stay in different localities and meet more people as well.
Give More than You Receive
Though you must be thinking that Couchsurfing is free, let me tell you something. Nothing is for free. If you think that you are not costing them a huge bill then do electricity, water and food come for free for the host. Yes, the host is never going to ask for money and it might offend them if you offer money in return for your stay. But there are ways to give back the host. Be a good guest by bringing a gift that is actually useful for the host (thoughtful gifts are always a better choice). The host will love this gesture. Apart from this, offer to pay for their fuel when you are out with them, or for the food or cook a meal for them, help them clean up. It would be really nice if you could take them out for a dinner on your last day.
The best thing you can do as a guest is, write an honest review about the host. Do not make them request you to write one. Writing an honest review will help the other couchsurfers as well. Also, you can recommend your host to your known circle.
Do Not Bring Guests Home
However good your hosts are, it is not your house towards the end. If you make friends outside, finish the business outside their house. Do not bring guests home and make it awkward for your host. Also, if you ask them they will be in a situation where they cannot deny. So it is always better to not bring guests home.
How to be a Good Couchsurfing Host
You have guests coming to your house; you need to make sure you are a good host. Here are few tips that will come in handy for you to be a good host.
Make Them Feel Like Home
Your guests must have had a long journey and might be in no mood to engage in a long conversation as soon as they enter but they might feel they are obliged to. Here, you step up and make them feel comfortable. Show them to their room and access to the bathroom. You can ask their preference if they wish to have something to drink or eat or would want to crash for the night. Also, give them the internet access before they ask for it.
If you are a host who has a daily job and few errands to run after that, feel free to let the guest know. Few guests would love that they have the whole time for themselves.
Do Not Expect
Guests are usually good and they do little things for the guests. But expecting the same from the guests is not a good thing. If they do help you, then it is good for you, but if they don’t, be okay with that as well.
Give Them Their Space
Having guests at home is awesome. But do not expect them to be around you all the time. They might want to stay alone for some time or sleep or work on something or even talk over the phone and connect with their friends and family. So give them space and it will be much appreciated.