Buzzword Bingo: Couchsurfing (2011)

related: sharing on the social web
flickr: couchsurfing

Couchsurfing = Temporarily lodging with a stranger free of charge

Couchsurfing Stats

Participate in Creating a Better World, One Couch at a Time

The CouchSurfing Project is a free, Internet-based, international hospitality service, and it is currently the largest hospitality exchange network. The project began in 2003 and formally launched on January 1, 2004.

As of November 2014 Couchsurfing is a global community of 9 million people in more than 120,000 cities who share their life, their world, their journey. Couchsurfing connects travelers with a global network of people willing to share in profound and meaningful ways, making travel a truly social experience.

Members use the website to coordinate contacts and home accommodation (or "surf" others' "couches") with other network members around the world. The website allows the creation of extensive profiles, and uses an optional credit card verification system, a personal vouching system, and personal references to increase security and trust between members. The site offers other features such as discussion groups, events and meetings, and live chat.

The CouchSurfing project was originally conceived by Casey Fenton in 2000. According to Fenton's own account, the idea arose after finding an inexpensive flight from Boston to Iceland. Rather than stay at a hostel, Fenton randomly emailed 1,500 students from the University of Iceland asking if he could stay. Fenton ultimately received more than fifty offers of accommodation. On the return flight to Boston he began to develop the ideas that would underpin the CouchSurfing project.

Visit people, not places

Show me a tourismportal that acknowledges or promotes couchsurfing

Not-for-profit Couchsurfing becomes a company (with a conscience)
Are couchsurfing networks legitimate local travel?
Couch Surfing: Social Networking Opens Doors for Travelers
Couch-surfing the globe - New Yorker
Travel Smarter 2012: New approaches to sustainable travel
Nice cartoon, explaining couchsurfing: Couchsurfing what???
Couch surfing a cave in southern Jordan



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Be found by the right people. We’ve simplified searches and statuses so that it’s easier for CouchSurfers to find each other based on their preferences.

In fact, all CouchSurfers will now be able to find you for coffee, a drink, or a day of exploring by using the “Locals” search. We just need to know one more thing to put you in the right search results:
Can you host?
  • Yes – I accept requests frequently.
  • Maybe – I sometimes accept requests.
  • Not Right Now
    (but I can hang out) – No thanks, I’ll send invitations if I want to host.
  • I'm Traveling – I’m on the road, so messages only please!


Is Couchsurfing legal?

Couch Surfers

CouchSurfing - Participate in Creating a Better World, One Couch At A Time (20100227)