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Although staying at a stranger’s place may sound unsettling, Couchsurfing provides unique experiences that are difficult to obtain when traveling as a typical tourist.

First, you get insider information that the majority of tourists wouldn’t know about, and you can bet it’s more trustworthy than that 2015 Tripadvisor review! Second, it goes far beyond providing free lodging. You get a cool look at real life in the area. Last but not least, it’s a neat way to spice up any trip.

The “travel experience” can also be brought to you by hosting visitors at your own location. In exchange for your kindness, surfers frequently have fascinating travel tales to share and may even prepare dishes from their home country.