How to Do Budget Travel on Couchsurfing and Hitchhiking

Couchsurfing and Hitchhiking

Couchsurfing and hitchhiking are two great ways to see the world on the cheap. They also give you the opportunity to meet and stay with locals, immersing yourself in the culture of your host country rather than simply visiting as a tourist would. The only catch? In order to hitchhike or couchsurfing, you need to have the courage to do it! This guide will give you all the advice you need to plan your budget travel adventure successfully.

The Case for Couchsurfing and Hitchhiking

If you’re planning on traveling long-term, or even if you just want to save money during a short vacation, it makes sense to consider couchsurfing.

Sometimes referred to as hospitality exchange, couchsurfing is a non-profit organization that helps travelers find free accommodation with people who host in their home. Hosts are often willing to show guests around town or let them borrow their car, too. One of our favorite sites for finding housesitting opportunities—where travelers can live for free in exchange for caring for pets and plants.

Tips for Getting Approved

Getting approved for couch surfing or hitchhiking is pretty simple. When filling out a host’s profile, leave short but honest answers about who you are, where you’re from, what you do for work/study/travel, how long you plan to stay, etc. Then make sure that your public profile is updated with your travel information; a lot of people have their profiles set so only other travelers can contact them. Finally, don’t be afraid to simply message hosts directly! If they have an open couch request or profile description inviting interested travelers to message them directly then there really isn’t any harm in sending a quick note saying hello and asking questions.

A Guide to Hitchhiking

Hitchhiking is an adventure. It’s exciting and liberating, but it can also be dangerous. Your chances of encountering violence are minimal, however, if you follow some rules. First off: Always hitch at daybreak or in broad daylight, even if you need to wait for hours.

There’s safety in numbers — people are less likely to pick up a stranger they think might be a psycho at 6 p.m., when they’re driving home from work by themselves. And look trustworthy! The last thing you want is for someone to feel like he or she needs your help getting into a vehicle with your creepy-looking self riding shotgun.

Checklists For Road Trips

Road trips are a fun way to get away from it all, but they also entail quite a bit of planning. You need to make sure you’re prepared for any type of weather, which means packing clothes that can go from hot summers days in Death Valley to a chilly night at Lake Tahoe.

Couchsurfing and Hitchhiking
Couchsurfing and Hitchhiking traveler

And if you’re driving down south for some sun, remember to pack sunscreen. Of course, no matter what time of year you take your trip, there’s always road construction. To make things easy for yourself on your next road trip, here are some checklists for popular travel destinations

Some General Tips

No matter what travel style you prefer, planning is always your best bet. It’s okay if you have a limited time frame or have to go in with little funds: help of (Couchsurfing and Hitchhiking)

You can still do awesome things! Even small trips often don’t cost much—the issue is more that people plan too far ahead, then end up paying top dollar when they don’t use their vacation days. Look for cheap alternatives at home before planning anything too extravagant. If you need some inspiration, try traveling around an area where you already live —or find a local version of somewhere expensive to visit (like New York City during its DUMBO Arts Festival). There are also tons of creative sites for places within biking distance , so get out there!

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