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How to search for a couch on CouchSurfing

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This is a step-by-step guide aimed at beginners and first-time users of CouchSurfing. In this guide we will show you how to search for a couch, or a place to stay with a host on the CouchSurfing hospitality exchange network.

Step 1: Fill out your Profile.

Fill out your Couchsurfing profile. Tell your potential host who you are, and what you are about! Write about your interests, your experiences, and your motivations. It doesn't have to be an essay - the important thing is to give it a try. Upload a profile picture, preferably one which shows your face. You are unlikely to find a place to stay without a fully filled in profile page. If you need more information, see How to fill out your profile.

Step 2: Where would you like to go?

  • At the top of every page you will should find a search bar with the words "Where would you like to go?".
  • Type your destination into the search bar, then click Surf or hit Enter.
  • In this example we have used Paris, France as an example.

Where would you like to go? Where would you like to go?

Step 3: Find a place to stay

The CORRECT way ✔

  • Searching for your destination takes you to the place page associated with your destination. In this example, we are taken to the place page for the Paris area.
  • At the top of the place page for your destination you will find a box with the text Find a place to stay for [ ] traveler(s)


Find a place to stay


  • Select the number of people that require a place to stay and click Go! or hit Enter.
  • You will be taken to the Couch search results page.

The WRONG way ✘

  • The place page also acts as a hub for the local community. To the bottom of the Find a place to stay section is the conversations section.
  • The conversations section is a public forum where locals and travellers can discuss the local area, for example, to arrange meetups or discuss events that may be happening.
  • Do not post a request for a couch in this section.


Don't do this


  • For more details see community guidelines.
  • Why? Safety: by posting in a public forum, you are inviting strangers to contact you.
  • Why? Simple courtesy: it is more polite to ask people directly for their hospitality. You will be more successful finding a place to stay through personalized messages.
  • Why? Spam: Thousands of people are looking for hosts. Filling up the conversations forum prevents the local community from using the forum for legitimate uses.
  • If you still decide to go ahead: your post will most likely be flagged and then deleted.

Step 4:

  • You now arrive at the Couch search page. Here you can browse the available hosts, and click through to visit their profiles.
  • This is the most important part of your search. Look through the list of available hosts and decide who you would like to stay with.
  • A brown couch (right of the username) symbolises that the member has a couch available.
  • You can use the filters (bottom left corner) and the sort these people by: menu (top) to further refine your search.
  • Visit the profile of a potential host and read their profile thoroughly.


Couch search results page

Step 5: Read a profile!

Step 6: Send a Couch Request

Step 7: