A brief history of hospitality exchange networks

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Hospitality exchange networks have been around for a while.

Non-profit networks

Commercial general networks

  • CouchSurfing was started by Casey Fenton in 2003 and is currently the largest hospitality exchange network. Also the term "couch surf" has been around for decades, it used to mean staying on friends' couches. CouchSurfing is credited with changing the meaning to include international hospitality exchange. read more
  • Hospitality Club is the successor to Hospex and Travelhoo, founded in 2000 by Veit Kühne and grown after merging with the Hitch Hikers Database, a global site based in Lithuania which originally had a dispute with Veit who copied parts of their website. read more - Hospitality Club
  • BeLodged
  • Stay 4 Free
  • Tripping
  • Horizon [1] - Hospitality Exchange within your own networks (friends, friends of friends, and people in your communities)

Specialized networks


Organisational critique

Comparison lists

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