My favorite travel apps: AIRBNB and Couchsurfing!

The Old Pomegranate House I stayed at while in Mirsini, Greece

Both of these apps offer unique lodging options and use reviews (from hosts and travelers) to keep things honest and safe. You usually get to meet the host and learn some local knowledge of the area with the best (and often not-so-touristy) places to see, visit, dine, etc. Some hosts offer bikes, boats, breakfast, or whatever else they may want to share!

Airbnb

How it works:
People rent out whatever extra space they have…. rooms, cabins, campgrounds, RVs, tree-houses, mansions, igloos, and everything in between!  This is a great option for groups. Instead of a few hotel rooms, you can rent out a whole house!

I like to find places that have a kitchen so I can cook healthy meals and cut down on spending by not having to eat out so often.  I always look for places with great outdoor spaces so I can relax outside in my own private area πŸ™‚

How’s this for outdoor space? πŸ˜‰ Traveled around the coast of Portugal in Bianca, the campervan! What an experience! We were invited to a delicious home cooked dinner by the couple who rented us the van when we picked it up- one of the many benefits of using Airbnb.

Sign up is free and even if you aren’t planning a trip, its fun perusing the site and checking out all the different places listed.

And…if you sign up using my link, you’ll get $60 off (sometimes they change the amount) your first trip and I’ll get a referral bonus!  So… if you used my link… Thank you so much!!  πŸ™‚
I love referral bonuses! Good for everyone…you, me, and Airbnb! (I’m a poet and I didn’t even know it! πŸ˜‰

Couchsurfing!


This app is similar to Airbnb but the places are free! The couchsurfing community is made up of people who want to travel on the cheap and those who want to help others travel on the cheap.  Most people fall into both categories over time πŸ™‚
People list thier extra rooms or couches on the site. This app also has a review system in place and, as a women traveling alone, I only stay with people that have a bunch of great references.

My first CS experience was about 10 years ago. My bf (at the time) and I decided to head to Costa Rica and rent a place for a few months. We didn’t know exactly where we wanted to be so we started off by requesting a two nights’ couchsurf at a sweet lady’s home in Cocoa beach. These two nights turned into a two week stay a new friend πŸ™‚ She kept offering for us to stay longer so we did!  We bought groceries, helped with things around the house and doggiesat for a few days while she went to San Jose to visit friends.

Recently CS added a hangout tab to connect with people locally without staying with them. Post what you want to do; coffee, explore, hike, catch a show, etc. and other people can join if they want. So great for when you are in a new city and just want to meet some cool peeps and hang out. Locals and travelers both use the hangouts so you never know who will pop up!

I love connecting with people from all of the world…we learn so much from each other!

Enjoying Venice beach with some people I met on the hangout tab on the couchsurfing app…. instant friends all over the world!
Thanks couchsurfing.org!

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