Claire Burgess’s Blog

The Couchsurfers

Posted in Claire Burgess, Fun, Travel by Claire Burgess on September 11, 2011

Since moving to Peterborough I have met some amazing people though a website called Couchsurfing. It’s like Facebook but for people who travel. If you move to a new place or are going somewhere new on holiday I totally recommend it.

I stayed with my first Couchsurfer for New Year in 2009 in New York, CJ. Having sent out lots of messages we finally got a reply. My sister and I turned up at his apartment just off 5th Avenue for a week staying on his couch. initially, a totally terrifying experience not helped by the fact that most of my friends thought he was probably going to turn out to be an axe murder or smoother me with a pillow in my sleep. As it turns out he was totally amazing. He didn’t seem to mind having English Twins sleeping on his sofa for 10 days…funny that?! and showed us all around his city. Including how to work out the ridiculously complicated subway, a Japanese karaoke bar and some of the best pizza the city has to offer. It was so much more than a free place to stay. CJ even had a long-term Couchsurfer who would stay regularly when she was passing through…she even had her own closet!

CJ shared his tips for how to pick out if a Couchsurfer was ok to stay on your couch.
1. They must wear a shirt in their profile photo
2. They must be small enough so they can’t take your tv

In fact, Couchsurfing is quite safe because you leave references for people you meet and stay with.

Peterborough has a really active Couchsurfing community, maybe because lots of people who live here are from elsewhere? I joined their group on the site and said hello when I first arrived here and had loads of friends ever since. I don’t know if it’s because we are all people who realise that Couchsurfers aren’t axe murders that brings us together or that it’s just we are all interested in meeting new people from all over. Whatever it is, they all seem like very cool people to me.

A Couchsurfer's trip to Skegness

Punting with some Couchsurfers in Cambridge

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One Response

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  1. sophabroad said, on September 11, 2011 at 9:41 pm

    I’ve never used Couchsurfers before, but I have friends who have and they had a great experience. I think the kind of person willing to let a stranger stay in their home (other than axe murderers) is always going to be interesting and friendly. I’ll definitely have to try it out at some point.


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