17 people found this article useful

9 Things You Need To Know About Couch Surfing in New Zealand

Pexels

Couch surfing Guide for New Zealand.

The concept of couch surfing is a dream for any backpacker, right? Stay the night somewhere for free, meet awesome locals, save some cash for more travel… What’s not to love? Sure, couch surfing can be a great option for accommodation in New Zealand but there are a few things about couch surfing that you need to know about.

Taking the main points from our Couchsurfing in New Zealand guide, we’ve made this quick digestible list of the things you really need to be aware of when couch surfing in New Zealand. We have some tips for couch surfing, as well as some dos and don’ts.

New Zealand's Biggest Gap Year on YouTube

1. GEt a free account with couchsurfing.com

There are a few ways to seek couch surfing opportunities, however couchsurfing.com is the go-to source. We recommend getting a free Couchsurfing account, rather than becoming a member straight away, as you will want to figure out if couch surfing is for you. However, if you want an alternative way to find couches to surf, search “couch surfing” in Facebook Groups.

Pexels

2. Couch surfing is free

Or at least, it should be free! The concept of couch surfing is hosts providing free accommodation, so if someone claiming to be offering couch surfing accommodation asks for payment, then make sure to notify the admins for where ever you found the couch surfing opportunity, whether it’s couchsurfing.com, Facebook group or what ever. Having free accommodation is the most obvious pro for couch surfing in New Zealand!

Pexels

3. You’re likely to meet awesome people

Most of the time, couch surfing hosts offer up space in their homes to travellers just out of the kindness of their hearts. It’s really not uncommon to have strangers to stay over in New Zealand if they need a place to stay. For backpackers, couch surfing is a great way to meet awesome people that usually want to be social (you can usually tell by a vibe of a host when you first meet them), so take the time to chat with them.

Pexels

4. But you need to understand the risks

Obviously staying at a stranger’s house does involve an element of risk. There are ways to reduce the risk of ending up in a nutjob’s home that we outline in 8 Safety Tips for Couchsurfing in New Zealand. Just remember, you are not obligated to stay somewhere if you feel unsafe.

Pexels

5. Couch surfing stays are usually short

Hosts usually offer free accommodation for one or two nights. It’s not a long-term accommodation solution by any means. Couch surfing is a good idea when just passing through the area, but if you are looking for somewhere to stay for a few days of exploration, we suggest you choose a hostel, campground or these 10 Damn Good Alternatives to Hostels. If you really don’t want to fork out any cash, then consider working for accommodation instead (if you have a work visa for New Zealand).

Pexels

6. You will need your own transport

Unless you are looking for couch surfing opportunities in the centres of major cities like Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin, etc. (which are usually fully booked anyway) then you’ll need to have your own transport to really make the most of couch surfing. Couch surfing hosts are spread out far and wide across New Zealand, most of them not being that easy to reach from bus stops or on foot.

BackpackerGuide.NZ

7. Have a back up plan

Cancellations happen regularly with couch surfing. For this reason, it’s best to have a back-up plan, such as scouting out the nearest accommodation options and how to get there.

Pexels

8. Read reviews

Getting back to safety issues, be sure to read reviews of couch surfing hosts on couchsurfing.com. If there are no reviews available for a host that seems legit and safe, open up a dialogue with them to get a feel for what the host is like. Ask them a few questions about your stay, what you will need, etc.

Pexels

9. House rules apply

As your host has been so gracious to invite you into their home, make sure you respect their rules. Ask if there’s anything you need to know and just be the typical polite house guest your mother brought you up to be. It’s common sense, but just in case you need a reminder…

 Marco Verch on Flickr

Take our survey
Was this article useful? Useful Useless
Help other travellers, share this article now:
Pin
Working Holiday New Zealand

Most Popular Videos

Video Thumbnail
Video Thumbnail
Video Thumbnail
Onuku Farm Hostel
South Island Hostels

5 Best Backpacker Hostels in Akaroa

Where to stay on a budget in Akaroa. With a stunning harbour [...]

Tourism NZ
Planning your trip

When is the Best Time to Go Backpacking in New Zealand?

When is a good time to go backpacking in New Zealand? With [...]

HiFX - Money Transfer
Hot on Backpacker Guide
Packing & Gear Lists
Pexels

10 Items You Should Definitely Not to Pack for New Zealand

Things you don’t need to pack for a trip to New Zealand. […]

Work Tips & Essentials
Pixabay

How to Open a New Zealand Bank Account

Opening a New Zealand bank account. For many backpackers and working holidaymakers, […]

Nightlife
BackpackerGuide.NZ

9 Great Backpacker Bars in New Zealand

Backpacker-friendly bars in New Zealand. Got some spare time to fill on […]

We use cookies to understand how you use our site and to improve your experience. This includes personalizing content and advertising. To learn more, click here. By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies, revised Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.
I accept

Menu